Breakthrough Energy Ventures Portfolio Company Career Opportunities

Director, Engineering

Nature’s Fynd

Nature’s Fynd

Software Engineering
Chicago, IL, USA
Posted on Saturday, July 29, 2023
Nature’s Fynd is a groundbreaking food tech company born out of NASA-supported research on extremophiles in the geothermal pools of Yellowstone National Park. Our novel fermentation technology produces a sustainable source of complete protein using only a fraction of the resources required by traditional agriculture. As the challenge to feed the world’s expanding population grows, our mission is to create amazing foods and materials that provide sustainable choices and nurture the planet.
We’re looking for passionate, driven, and ambitious people to join our fast-growing team.
As Director of Engineering at Nature's Fynd, you will be a pivotal thought partner, collaborating closely with the CTO to devise and execute capital projects across the Fynder Group. Your expertise in capacity master planning and budgeting, supported by Techno-Economic assessments, will be essential in driving successful project outcomes. Leading the Project Engineering team, both internal and external, you will play a key role in team development, ensuring their professional growth and the achievement of our strategic objectives. As a member of the Tech-Ops Leadership Team, you will contribute to shaping the company's technological vision and direction.
This position is located in Chicago, IL and reports to the Chief Technology Officer.

Production of our Fy Ingredient:

  • Existing Facilities, Greenfield, JVs, or CMOs:
  • Collaborate with Process & Technology, Automation, and Capacity & Supply management teams to generate Order of Magnitude Estimates (FEL 1) to +/-50% cost accuracy, considering essential techno-economic factors
  • Oversee the design development of Concept Designs (FEL 2) to +/-25% accuracy through 3rd party engineering sources, with a focus on techno-economic considerations
  • Manage the design development of Basic Designs (FEL 3) to +/-10% accuracy, utilizing 3rd party engineering sources while considering techno-economic aspects
  • Secure project approvals and development of project execution plans
  • Ensure the smooth execution of projects, encompassing detailed design, construction, commissioning, and qualification, with key performance measurements based on safety, cost, schedule, and quality
  • Determine suitable execution contract scenarios, such as EPC, EPCm, and Procurement management
  • Oversee upgrades of JV or CMO plants, defining the scope of work, developing PFD & P&ID, specifying equipment, and managing procurement, expediting, execution, and qualification
  • Identify and establish relationships with 3rd party engineering resources/partners, as well as key process equipment vendors to leverage existing technologies
  • Effectively manage engineering partners, vendors, and contractors, with a strong focus on commercial terms and IP protection
  • Stay abreast of process technology breakthroughs and identify suppliers of equipment for specific process applications in collaboration with Process & Technology and Automation teams

Finished Good: Food Manufacturing (CMOs):

  • Collaborate with the Food Processing External Manufacturing team to oversee CMO plant upgrades, defining the scope of work, developing PFD & P&ID, and providing execution oversight
  • Lead commissioning and qualification efforts for CMO plant upgrades
  • Manage project cost control and budgeting, ensuring effective cost management
  • Conduct engineering audits to identify risks and opportunities for improvement, with a focus on Opex
  • Provide technical support and troubleshooting expertise
  • Support new product introductions in coordination with relevant teams

Existing Operations and facilities:

  • Manage CapEx, including portfolio management and budget management for minor capital projects
  • Oversee end-to-end CapEx planning and execution, including permitting and license to operate
  • Ensure seamless project handover to the Manufacturing & Maintenance teams
  • Provide engineering support for specific topics, such as CMMS, calibration, and equipment troubleshooting
  • Collaborate with Process & Technology and Automation teams to support process development efforts.
  • Support engineering projects for R&D, laboratory, and pilot plant scale facilities

Build and lead Engineering team:

  • People management current project engineering team
  • Build and develop team to match needs of an increasing capex portfolio
  • Develop, implement, and maintain Project Engineering Management Manual
  • Develop and implement engineering guidelines and standards for process, utilities, and GMP facilities


  • Engineering degree/masters, ideally in Chemical or Mechanical discipline
  • Project Management certification, e.g., PMP
  • 10-15 years of experience in the process manufacturing industry, ideally with expertise in Fermentation, Food, Nutrition, or pharmaceutical sectors
  • Demonstrated experience in project management and execution of multi-million dollar greenfield and brownfield projects
  • Proficiency in Project Management, Greenfield project experience, Food Safety, GMP knowledge, and Master planning


  • Participation in Employee Stock Ownership Program
  • 100% paid employee benefits (medical, dental, vision)
  • Generous Parental leave policy
  • Opportunity to join a company with an aggressive growth trajectory that will revolutionize multiple industries
  • Engaging and dynamic work culture full of innovation and collaboration with your fellow Fynders

Commitment To Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, And Belonging:

  • Nature’s Fynd views equity, diversity, inclusion, and belonging as the pathway to achieving inclusive excellence and fostering a culture where everyone can thrive. We strive to create a community that draws upon the widest possible pool of talent to unify excellence and diversity while fully embracing individuals from varied backgrounds, cultures, races, identities, life experiences, perspectives, beliefs, and values

EEO Statement:

  • We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, gender identity, sexual orientation, pregnancy and pregnancy-related conditions, or any other characteristic protected by law