Michael Marino, Assistant Dean of SMAST, is the recent recipient of the 2020 Citation for Outstanding Performance from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. The award distinguishes employees who have gone above and beyond ordinary expectations to play a major role in the Commonwealth’s successful delivery of quality services to its citizens.
Marino is specifically recognized for providing effective administrative leadership of SMAST during the COVID-19 emergency, as the School’s leadership transitioned to an interim dean, and the University transitioned to an acting chancellor and acting provost. He also led the transition of staff and facilities operations to primarily remote operations, while maintaining essential onsite functions during the emergency closure. He was at the forefront of efforts to establish safe protocols for research and vessel operations to allow essential research and educational activities at SMAST to continue during the pandemic, while also managing the administrative budget and staff to implement reduced spending plans.
“Asst. Dean Marino’s accomplishments have allowed SMAST to maintain mission-critical research and education during the COVID-19 emergency, including the technical support of online classes, and safe resumption of student and faculty research in the lab and in the field,” said Steven Cadrin, Professor & Chair of the Department of Fisheries Oceanography at SMAST. “Because of his leadership, SMAST led the UMass Dartmouth campus in resuming research activities in a safe and responsible manner, and thus established baselines for many protocols in other academic units.”
“In addition to these administrative accomplishments, Marino’s professionalism, sense of accountability, and respect for subordinates, peers, and supervisors offer leadership by example that will help our School to survive this crisis. He has planned, managed, and executed COVID-19 emergency protocols in a sensitive and responsive manner and the outcome has been successful,” said Cadrin.
“I was extremely grateful for the nomination,” said Marino who has served in his role as assistant dean of SMAST since 2009. “I wish that I could share this award with the rest of the SMAST administrative and operations team because a number of the areas mentioned in the nomination were truly team efforts and would not have come to fruition without the entire team’s support and assistance. This has been a challenging time for everyone but I was glad that we were able to find ways to keep our researchers safe and productive.”