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GMRI Hires First Chief Operating Officer

Aug 21, 2011
Summer 2011

The Gulf of Maine Research Institute (GMRI) announced on Thursday that it has recruited Ellen Grant as its first chief operating officer.

Grant served as executive director of the Institute for Civic Leadership (ICL) from 1998-2008. During her tenure at ICL, Grant was well known for her work developing leadership capacity in Greater Portland's corporate, non-profit, and public sector communities. During the past three years, Grant has served as a consultant to The Nature Conservancy and its local partners in Micronesia and the Eastern Caribbean. Grant is a graduate of Colby College.

GMRI has tripled in size since opening the doors to its marine research and education lab on Portland Harbor six years ago. When GMRI moved into its lab in 2005, it had 15 staff members and a $3.5 million annual budget. GMRI has grown to 60 staff members, including joint appointments with the University of Maine's School of Marine Sciences, and a $9.5 million budget.

Don Perkins, president, GMRI, commented, "Given our growth over the past several years, it was time to increase our senior management capacity. Ellen will focus on operational excellence as we prepare to pursue the next phase of our strategic plan."

Looking to the future, GMRI is committed to deepening understanding of the ocean ecosystem, supporting effective management of the Gulf of Maine, including both traditional uses such as fishing and new uses such as ocean wind power, and catalyzing Maine's emergence as the nation's science-literate state.

"I've watched GMRI over the past decade as it evolved from an inspired vision to an internationally regarded research and education institution. I'm excited and honored to join the GMRI team," said Grant.