Area of Focus:




Aurora Occo Logo

Division: Science & Innovation

Hours: 40 hours per week, Monday – Friday
Job location: Comox, British Columbia
Employment type: Full-time permanent, on-site at a facility


A little about us
We’re a global cannabis company with operations across Europe and North and South America. We’re driven by our passion to help people improve their lives and have a diverse team who bring their best every day, so Aurora can be the cannabis provider of choice for patients and consumers. We love our work, and we especially love our high quality, innovative brands that make up the Aurora family – from Aurora, Aurora Drift, San Rafael ’71, Greybeard and Whistler.
Our people combined with our collective passion for the industry is what makes Aurora a special place to work and defines what we call our “A-Team”. We are a high-performing team of cannabis experts, innovators, and champions, that work, learn and win together. We think BIG, act BOLD and execute with PURPOSE in all that we do, and will stop at nothing to cultivate the ultimate cannabis experience for our community.

About Occo Occo is a genetics licensing brand owned by Aurora, where our mission is Better Cannabis for a Better World. We take the world’s best cannabis germplasm and use cutting edge breeding and genomics work to develop elite, new cultivars for the cannabis industry. We use IP laws to carefully protect our innovation, then license the technology throughout Canada and the rest of the world. Our work drives continual improvement in customer experience and grower economics.

Job summary
We’re looking for an ambitious and hard-working professional to lead our breeding team in the role of Director, Breeding! Reporting to the Senior Vice President, Science & Innovation, you will have the opportunity to lead an applied research program that develops new cannabis cultivars. The breeding will focus on new, photoperiod-sensitive cultivars (clonally propagated) that meet the needs of Aurora and external customers, in addition to a hybrid seed program which will eventually replace the clonal efforts. All cultivars will be developed for our Occo genetics catalogue. From plant genetics to plants to cultivation, you will leverage all aspects of your technical skills and passion for the industry to make an impact at Aurora and here’s how you’ll do it…

As the Director, Breeding, you will…

  • Lead one of the largest cannabis breeding efforts globally, delivering both clonally and seed propagated new varieties
  • Lead the breeding team and work collaboratively with other parts of Aurora’s Science & Innovation team including operations, pathology, chemistry, genomics, and medical science
  • Continually improve the breeding process, building and maintaining a deep understanding of key traits and populations
  • Maximize the use of the space in the facility, keeping cycle turns tight
  • Coordinate evaluation and data collection of new cultivars at client sites
  • Develop populations for mapping novel traits, carry out phenotyping, development and validation of markers
  • Enable and use markers to increase the speed, efficiency, and accuracy of breeding efforts
  • Lead the constant improvement of Occo’s catalog of cannabis genetics by developing new cultivars that emphasize traits sought by both consumers and growers
  • Catalog and maintain Occo’s germplasm library, and where appropriate, lead the acquisition of new germplasm to expand the breeding program’s access to key traits
  • Team with Occo’s business development and operations personnel to help drive the successful adoption and monetization of Occo cultivars
  • Build and maximize the value of intellectual property, including utility patents, plant patents, plant breeders’ rights, and the like, with support of Aurora’s legal team
  • Perform administrative functions including budget and staff planning, goal-setting, and annual performance reviews
  • Stay abreast of scientific developments related to cannabis, including attendance at conferences, and share pertinent information with the science and management teams
  • Develop and sustain partnerships and collaborations with academic and industry partners that further Occo’s scientific and business objectives
  • Advise Aurora management on new scientific areas and technologies useful for Aurora’s science program
  • Actively promote compliance with all applicable regulatory and quality assurance systems
  • Travel to and liaise with Aurora Canadian production sites (Whistler - Pemberton, Thrive, River and Ridge – Southern Ontario) as well as provide technical support to Occo’s external clients when required

As an experienced professional you will have…

  • A Ph.D. in plant breeding or closely related plant science discipline
  • 3-5 years minimum of experience in a related role
  • Breeding experience with cannabis or hemp is not required, but is considered an asset

You’re the ideal candidate because…

  • You have strong strategic and technical skills in plant breeding
  • You are a curious professional, open and comfortable adapting to evolving priorities with the ability to lead through ambiguity
  • You have strong leadership, communication, and organizational skills to use science to enable Aurora’s new global vision
  • You possess technical skills in data management, statistics, genomics, and plant biology
  • You have demonstrated ability to succeed and lead in a high performing culture
  • You are a positive team player who can build cross-functional relationships to satisfy agendas and objectives

What we offer

  • Competitive compensation, performance bonuses, RRSP and stock options
  • flexible workplace equipped with flexible hours, vacation time, meeting-free-Friday afternoons and more
  • Robust benefits package with health, dental and medical cannabis coverage, life insurance and LTD policies and health and personal spending care accounts
  • Collaborative team of professionals with a collective passion for providing people better days with cannabis

Next steps

Apply today by submitting your resume through our website.

You can expect your application to be reviewed by our Talent Acquisition Team and we will contact you if we see a fit via email.

Think you’re the ideal candidate but you don’t meet all the requirements? Apply anyways. We would love to review your application to see if you’re the right fit or find you an alternative opportunity.

Not the role for you? Share this posting with your network while subscribing to our Talent Community to learn more about upcoming opportunities (hot tip: if you are an Aurora employee, take advantage of the employee referral program by sharing this posting with someone in your network! If they are the successful candidate, you may be eligible for a bonus!).
Diversity and inclusion
At Aurora, we are proud to foster and celebrate a diverse community of professionals! We take pride in nurturing an inclusive culture that empowers our people to be their authentic selves, celebrate their differences and love where they work.

 Our diverse community combined with our inclusive culture, is what sets us apart in the industry and equips our A-Team with superpowers – and this is why, we encourage all candidates to apply for job opportunities regardless of race, national origin, colour, religion, age, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, marital and family status, disability, or any other identifying characteristic. If you require accommodation (including, but not limited to, an accessible interview site or alternate format of job posting) during the recruitment and selection process, please do not hesitate to let our team know!

Health and safety
Our mission at Aurora has always been to improve the health and wellness of our core community. We strive to create a safe, healthy, and inclusive environment for our team and strongly believe introducing a mandatory COVID-19 vaccination policy will help us achieve this.

As of February 2022, Aurora has introduced a mandatory COVID-19 vaccination policy for all employees and as a condition of employment, all candidates must provide proof of vaccination against COVID-19 or receive an approved medical or human rights accommodation prior to commencing employment with Aurora. If proof of vaccination is not provided or a request for accommodation is not approved, the offer of employment will be rescinded.

If applicable, Aurora Human Resources will contact you via your email address provided. We do not contact candidates over Facebook or other Social Media apps. You will never be requested to provide confidential information such as banking information or your Social Insurance Number in the interview process.