Programs & Services

Margaret Marino to Head New Mexico Museum of Natural History & Science

October 26, 2015

(Albuquerque & Santa Fe, NM) – Margaret M. Marino has been appointed to lead the New Mexico Museum of Natural History & Science (NMMNHS) in Albuquerque.  The NMMNHS is a division of the NM Department of Cultural Affairs and is one of the most highly visited museums in the state, serving more than 250,000 people annually and offering extensive education programs for children. 

Ms. Marino will commence her duties as Executive Director beginning November 23rd, NM Department of Cultural Affairs Cabinet Secretary Veronica Gonzales announced today. The selection of Ms. Marino is the result of an extensive national search process.  The search committee recommended top finalists to Secretary Gonzales and Governor Susana Martinez for their consideration.

“Margaret Marino started her museum career at the (NMMNHS) as an evaluator and has since, served in key professional positions elsewhere, building an outstanding career in the museum field.  She brings a wealth of natural history museum experience in management, fundraising, grant-writing, community collaborations, programming, and exhibitions,” said Secretary Gonzales. “From planning to strategy to implementation, Ms. Marino has an established track-record as an outstanding administrator, and we are thrilled to have her join the Department’s executive team.”

Ms. Marino has 30 years of experience as a museum professional, with leadership experience in natural history museums all over the country.  Most recently Marino served a decade as Executive Director the North Museum of Nature and Science in Pennsylvania, managing a $3 million dollar capital improvement campaign, collaborating with regional academic and social service organizations, and sharing leadership responsibility on two award-winning National Science Foundation projects, with an exceptional track record for obtaining grant money and as a highly effective fundraiser.

Ms. Marino is nationally known in the field of exhibit development and evaluation. She was co-principal investigator on two major National Science Foundation grants involving multiple museums, and was awarded the international Noyce Foundation fellowship from The Noyce Foundation in collaboration with the Association of Science Technology Centers. The Noyce Foundation was created to honor Dr. Robert N. Noyce, co-founder of INTEL.

“I am eager to return to New Mexico to assume the role of executive director of the New Mexico Natural History and Science Museum,” Marino said.  “The Museum is an incredible resource for the community, and I am eager to work with the museum foundation and staff to deepen the Museum’s relationships to its audiences.  Being familiar with the region, I have a good sense of the Museum’s competitive advantage as a destination venue for education, enlightenment, and adventure for Albuquerque residents and all New Mexicans.”

Ms. Marino has a Master’s Degree in Cultural Services, and a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree, both from the University of Oregon.

While commending Ms. Marino’s appointment, Secretary Gonzales also acknowledged the outstanding work and dedication of Gary Romero, the museum’s deputy director, who has served as interim director of the NMMNHS for the past year, and the museum staff’s commitment to a job well done and their willingness to assume additional responsibility. 

The Department of Cultural Affairs is New Mexico’s cultural steward and is charged with preserving and showcasing the state’s cultural riches. With its eight museums, eight historic sites, arts, archaeology, historic preservation, and library programs, the Department is one of the largest and most diverse state cultural agencies in the nation. Together, its facilities, programs, and services support an annual $5.6 billion cultural industry in New Mexico.

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