This is administrative forensic science work at the second supervisory level, planning and directing through subordinate forensic supervisors or a program leader, the operations of a laboratory section or the Quality Services section of the Philadelphia Police Department’s Office of Forensic Science. Positions in this class are allocated to one of three assignments Biology, Chemistry or Quality Assurance.  All positions assist the senior executive team of the Office of Forensic Science in strategic planning, resource management, grant acquisition, procurement and other managerial tasks.  The positions allocated to the Biology and Chemistry assignments are responsible for planning, directing and evaluating operations of the Criminalistics or Chemistry laboratory section and providing administrative oversight for the forensic examination of a wide variety of evidence.   The position allocated to the QA assignment is responsible for managing and coordinating the Quality Assurance Program with oversight for each section of the Office of Forensic Science. Work includes planning, directing and  evaluating a wide variety of forensic examination services involving qualitative and quantitative analyses of chemical, physical and biological evidence, ensuring section compliance to quality assurance and accreditation standards, providing expert testimony in court and other laboratory management duties in support of criminal investigations.

            This class is differentiated from the next lower level by responsibility for planning and directing the comprehensive operations for a laboratory section and participating in the overall management of the Office of Forensic Science.  Developing new techniques and methods of forensic analysis, and evaluating new methods and techniques developed by others, are significant aspects of the work. All work is performed in accordance with national and international quality assurance standards in the accredited Office of Forensic Science.  Work is performed under the general supervision of an administrative or technical superior.


ALLOCATING FACTORS:  (The following conditions must be met for a position to be allocated to this class.)


  1. Three positions will be allocated to this class, one in each of the Biology, Chemistry and Quality Assurance assignments.
  2. Positions this class must be filled by a qualified forensic examiner upon appointment.
  3. Positions allocated to the Biology and Chemistry assignment class must perform work at the managerial level, planning and directing the operations of a laboratory section for the Office of Forensic Science of the Philadelphia Police Department through subordinate supervisors.
  4. The position allocated to the Quality Assurance assignment must manage and coordinate the Quality Assurance Program with oversight for each section of the Office of Forensic Science.
  5. Positions in this class must be located in the Philadelphia Police Department’s Office of Forensic Science.




Plans, directs, coordinates and evaluates, through subordinate comprehensive operations for a laboratory section consisting of two or more laboratory units; establishes operational performance goals; reviews and approves testing methods and procedures for routine analyses involving scientific research or adaptation of existing methods; plans complex testing methods and procedures for special investigations; develops and enforces laboratory safety procedures; acts as primary liaison to law enforcement, legal and other professionals regarding laboratory services and casework for the section.

            Plans, organizes and manages, through subordinate supervisors or a program leader, a high volume of casework  or quality assurance activities for a laboratory section that may include forensic scientists, technicians and/or clerical staff engaged in analytical procedures, research projects and the ongoing scientific analysis of confiscated materials, organic, inorganic, biological and DNA evidence in support of criminal investigations; reviews and approves the findings of a wide variety of physical, chemical and/or biological tests; directs the development and use of quality assurance methods to validate analytical data; interprets the findings of highly complex tests to law enforcement and other officials; develops and establishes archival procedures for test data, reports and analyses; prepares, reviews and presents technical reports on behalf of the Office of Forensic Science; implements laboratory accreditation and quality assurance protocols for a laboratory section; develops policies to ensure section compliance to all applicable standards and requirements.

            Contacts a variety of public and private agencies to gather information on various analytical techniques and to solicit samples such as testing standards; may prepare reports interpreting test results, indicating probability of crime or violation of statutes or ordinances; conducts research experiments to develop modern, efficient and precise laboratory methods, techniques and procedures; reviews national and international professional journals and technical reports concerning developments in forensic analysis; studies new scientific and professional developments related to forensic science; develops, tests and evaluates new methods, techniques and procedures to certify their efficacy and feasibility for use in forensic analysis and other police criminalistic work; reviews data and analytical reports to ensure that laboratory policies and procedures are followed; may conduct field work at crime scenes directing the collection and analysis of evidence in complex, sensitive or major investigations.

            Plans and directs, through subordinate supervisors or a program leader, the implementation of a professional training program for the preservation, examination, handling and comparative analysis of forensic evidence in the area of assignment.  Trains new laboratory personnel or directs their training by qualified forensic examiners; ensures that the scope and type of professional training in specialized forensic disciplines is appropriate to the volume and type of analyses conducted by the laboratory section; determines and coordinates advanced training for senior laboratory staff; may direct laboratory practicum applicable to the area of assignment; reviews and approves curricula, syllabi and other materials used by supervisors and other qualified examiners to implement professional training programs; reviews trainee progress and program outcomes; adjusts training program goals or structure as required.

            Ensures coordination between forensic scientists, investigators and legal professionals to ensure that appropriate laboratory services are provided in an efficient and timely manner; reviews reports including monthly and annual summaries of casework status and unit performance; analyzes and coordinates work processes to meet operational performance goals.

Testifies in court and directs the preparation of subordinates to provide testimony as an expert witness in civil and criminal cases to present evidence indicated by laboratory tests and examinations; explains forensic techniques and theory applicable to current or hypothetical cases; provides technical justification, through analysis of evidence, to establish a probable cause basis for warrant issuing; participates in Civilian Board of Inquiry hearings convened to examine Philadelphia Police Department civilian disciplinary cases.

            Provides input and makes strategic planning recommendations to the Director of Forensic Science; prepares annual laboratory budget and oversees related administrative functions for an assigned laboratory section; prepares grant applications for the purchase of specialized laboratory equipment; reviews professional journals, research papers, equipment specifications and vendor information to prepare grant applications; prepares ongoing reports about grant-funded studies and research projects; makes recommendations about procurement and contract specifications.

Develops and conducts professional trainings, with emphasis on evidence collection procedures, for forensic scientists, police detectives, police supervisors, police recruits, civilian investigators, interns, nurses and other civilian personnel at hospitals, City agencies and other agencies as required.

Acts as liaison to other units within the Philadelphia Police Department and outside agencies concerning the intake and analysis of evidence reporting and interpretation of analysis results and the testimony of subordinate personnel in court.

Manages and directs the comparison, examination and overall analysis of a wide variety of physical, chemical and/or DNA evidence. 

            Ensures that all instrumental and test data is consistent with reported results of analysis; performs statistical calculations to verify or validate analysis results as required.

            Reviews changes in local, state and federal legislation affecting the provision of forensic laboratory services and the analysis of controlled substances. Interprets legislation pertaining to evidence analysis, storage, handling, identification and control; develops and adapts related policies and procedures in conformance with legislative and other regulatory requirements.

            Advises law enforcement personnel about evidence collection, including relevant scientific, technical, legal or safety issues such as safe handling procedures for drug equipment and hazardous materials; arranges and directs the transport, intake, control and destruction of large quantities of evidence, such as controlled substance evidence; ensures that the destruction of any evidence is performed in compliance with quality assurance standards, policies and procedures.

Performs related work as required.


Biology Assignment:


Plans, directs, coordinates and evaluates comprehensive operations of the Criminalistics laboratory section; provides administrative oversight for the forensic examination of a wide variety of physical and biological evidence for trace materials to be tested with presumptive and confirmatory procedures, including but not limited to, those for the presence of blood, semen, saliva and other biological material.

Chemistry Assignment:


Plans, directs, coordinates and evaluates comprehensive operations of the Chemistry laboratory section; provides administrative oversight for the forensic examination of a wide variety of physical and chemical evidence for trace materials to be tested with presumptive and confirmatory procedures, including, but not limited to the collection and analysis of liquid, solid and gaseous materials, substances and compounds for quantitative and/or qualitative results.


Quality Assurance Assignment:


Manages the Office of Forensic Science Quality Program;  supervises a Forensic Scientist 4 responsible for performing  internal audits across disciplines of the FSB,  preparing and planning for external audits and coordinating external proficiency testing programs; provides direct oversight  to the Technical Services and Scientific Services Divisions on issues of Accreditation and Quality Assurance & Quality Control, to ensure all relevant forensic standards are met; coordinates with other Forensic Laboratory Managers to conduct internal audits; manages and participates in internal audits to ensure National accreditation and quality assurance standards are met, including but not limited to, laboratory goals and objectives, organization and management, personnel qualifications and training, facilities, evidence control, validation, analytical procedures and calibration and maintenance; documents quality assurance corrective actions; reviews changes and follows up to ensure corrective actions are completed; decides and initiates laboratory shut downs if accreditation standards are not met; determines proficiency test measurements and standards and protocols for the Office of Forensic Science; reviews and signs protocols submitted by other unit Managers;

Submits laboratory information and coordinates external audits with accrediting agencies; communicates with agencies to update accreditation requirements; communicates and advices the Office of Forensic Science Director on all quality assurance, accreditation and compliance issues.






·         the principles of analytical chemistry, with emphasis on the qualitative and quantitative analysis of drugs and/or other related organic compounds

·         related areas of chemistry and other physical sciences, such as drug toxicology and mathematics as applied to analytical chemistry

·         administrative and managerial practices, policies and procedures applicable to the PPD/OFS operations in the area of assignment







·      establish and maintain effective working conditions with associates, police personnel and outside agencies

·         apply information systems used for forensic analysis, data analysis and report generation


MINIMUM ACCEPTABLE TRAINING AND EXPERIENCE (The following statement represents the minimum training and experience standards which will be used to admit or reject applicants for tests. Applications submitted by candidates for this class will be reviewed based on training and experience requirements as approved on 3/14.)




            Completion of a bachelor's degree program at an accredited college or university with major course work in chemistry, biochemistry, biology, molecular biology, applied science, chemical engineering, physical or natural science, forensic science or a closely related field.





Six years of forensic science work, which has included three years as a qualified forensic examiner, at an accredited federal, state or municipal forensic laboratory.





Option 1:


One year of forensic science work, as a qualified examiner, equivalent to a Forensic Laboratory Supervisor at an accredited federal, state or municipal forensic laboratory, with responsibility for supervising the work of subordinate program leaders, forensic scientists or technicians.




Option 2:


            Two years of forensic science work as a qualified examiner, equivalent to a Forensic Scientist 4 with responsibility for planning, assigning, coordinating and reviewing forensic programs at an accredited federal, state or municipal forensic laboratory.


NOTE: The Biology and Chemistry assignments will be filled by a qualified examiner from the Scientific Services Division. The Quality Assurance assignment will be filled by a qualified examiner from any discipline who possesses one of the required degrees.    


NOTE:  Candidates must provide documentation, prior to appointment, to support their qualification as qualified examiner.  See below for details.


QUALIFIED EXAMINER DOCUMENTATION- Must be provided to the Police Department at the time of interview.


Proof of successful completion of a training program within an accredited forensic science organization, which resulted in qualification as an expert (forensic examiner) in the area of specialty.  Qualification must have included independent forensic casework, routine proficiency testing, and testimony as an expert in the area of specialty/discipline. External candidates must provide documentation to support their qualification as an expert.  Documentation should include:


1.     A certificate or letter from an accredited forensic laboratory that details the area and date of qualification.

2.    Proof of the laboratory’s accreditation from either ASCLD-LAB, FQS, or another ISO 17025 forensic accrediting body.

3.    Proof of successful completion of routine proficiency test may include copies of proficiency test results, a summary document from the laboratory’s quality assurance program, or other documentation that details scope and completion of proficiency testing.

4.    Proof of testimony experience may include a copy of a court transcript from one or more trials, or a letter from a court official detailing the expert’s experience testifying in court as an expert in a specific discipline.


NOTE:  Selective Factor Certification may be utilized, as needed, to fill specific positions.  In accordance with Civil Service Regulation 11.032 – Selective Factor Certification – the appointing authority may request certification of eligible candidates with one or more of the required degrees and/or specific experience to fill specific positions in this class.  Certification to fill such positions will be made from the two highest-ranking eligible candidates on the eligible list who possess the specified degree.




            Ability to physically perform the duties and to work in the environmental conditions required of a position in this class.

Ability to visually distinguish test results, which may include color changes, pattern recognition, and interpretation of electronic data (tables, graphs and charts).




Possession of a valid proper class motor vehicle operator’s license as issued by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania prior to appointment and during tenure of employment as a Forensic Laboratory Manager if required by work assignment.


Class Established - 9/85

Latest Spec Revision:

CSC - 2/14

Ad Board - 3/14