June 20th, 2018 marks 5 years since GMGI was formally launched.
To help us celebrate, we asked our four Founders to reflect on the first 5 years of the journey…

It is hard to believe that GMGI is celebrating its fifth birthday!

To see how GMGI and Gloucester Biotechnology Academy are already having an impact on the lives and careers of so many young people is incredibly gratifying. We have attracted some amazing talent to work at the Academy, GMGI, and to serve on our advisory committees. But the best is yet to come!

We are already learning about the cod and lobster genomes and the diversity of the microbes that live in the sediments at Stellwagen. The GMGI Research Institute building will be the site for so many interesting discoveries about the oceans and marine life. These discoveries and others will enable biotechnology businesses to start up and thrive in Gloucester and the greater Cape Ann region. The ocean is truly a rich source for all sorts of scientific insight that will be applicable to both the marine world and human health.

David Walt

Professor of Pathology, Harvard Medical School and Howard Hughes Medical Institute Professor

The founders of Gloucester Marine Genomics Institute and Gloucester Biotechnology Academy challenged ourselves to find a way to use our knowledge and capabilities as educators, scientists, and entrepreneurs, to give back to the community that has given so much to us.

In particular, we focused our attention on providing career opportunities to the youth of Cape Ann in technologically advanced areas of life science, and on creating a platform for the creation of a new economy in Gloucester that would be in synch with the historical strengths of the city in maritime science and in pragmatic innovation.

Over the past five years, we and the entire GMGI and Gloucester Biotechnology Academy team have made tremendous progress toward realizing the founders’ grand challenge -- as evidenced by the successful graduates of the Academy, the deciphering of the Atlantic lobster genetic code, and the creation of a beautiful new addition to the Gloucester skyline, GMGI’s future headquarters.

I am very proud to have led GMGI through its inception and early phase.

Greg Verdine, PhD

Erving Professor of Chemistry, Harvard University

The Gloucester Marine Genomics Institute (GMGI) is turning five years old this month, a big birthday, and well worth celebrating.

The co-founders of GMGI, along with friends and colleagues who provided tremendous help during the preparation phase that preceded our incorporation as a non-profit enterprise in June 2013, envisioned the creation of an environment that would include a triad of three interconnected strategies: establishing a “marine research institute powered by genomics”; developing a “science learning environment that would, among other things, train local high school graduates for scientific careers”; and promoting “conditions that encourage the development of a science hub in and around Gloucester.”

Thanks to an amazing staff of nearly a dozen brilliant, hard-working and dedicated scientists, teachers and administrators -- and the extremely generous donations of numerous philanthropists and various Institutions from the Commonwealth -- we can safely say that critical milestones have been achieved for all three strategies.

GMGI is now a well-grounded community, which should be very proud of its achievements. The future of GMGI looks bright with a new building on the horizon combined with the high quality of its current staff.

Incidentally, GMGI will turn 10 years old on the 400th anniversary of America’s first seaport. I am convinced there will be many more accomplishments to celebrate by then. In the meantime, Happy Birthday GMGI!

Marc Vidal, PhD

Professor of Genetics, Harvard Medical School and Founding Director of the Center for Cancer Systems Biology at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

I am proud of the accomplishments GMGI has made in just five years. Our vision to catalyze the regional economy by promoting biotechnology research in our beautiful city of Gloucester has become a reality.

To bring biotechnology to this region -- particularly through the Academy -- is beyond exciting. I love to see the students getting involved in the science community.

GMGI has also brought a solid presence of science, innovation and research to Gloucester, that in the future will be synonymous with our name -- and a big part of our local economic development. I am proud to bring forth our vision that started many years ago in Joe and Maggie Rosa’s kitchen. Greg Verdine, David Walt, Marc Vidal and I had a vision to grow biotechnology and bring this science into Gloucester. It is exciting to see our dream come true.

GMGI has diversified since its founding and brought our community together respectfully around the strategy of bringing genomics to marine science.Going forward I am excited to see GMGI grow and expand into our waterfront facility. I thank the Board for their continued vision.

I am beyond proud of this accomplishment and our passion going forward.


Sheree Zizik

Founder GMGI
Owner, Beauport Hospitality Group

Our mission is to conduct world-class marine biotechnology research which expands the regional economy.

Gloucester Marine
Genomics Institute

417 Main Street
Gloucester, MA 01930

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