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New MassDevelopment CEO rounds out top staff

Agency hires new VPs with experience in planning and economic development

February 24, 2021 : The Lowell Sun, by Jon Winkler

DEVENS – The new CEO of MassDevelopment, the state agency that oversees Devens, has hired two new top staffers, the agency announced earlier this week.

Theresa Park, the current executive director of the Merrimack Valley Planning Commission, will join MassDevelopment on March 15 as deputy director and senior executive vice president.

Then on April 5, Marcos Marrero, former director of planning and economic development in Holyoke, will join the agency as executive vice president of community development.

This comes mere months after Tania Hartford came on as chief operating officer and chief of staff in early January with the agency’s President and CEO Dan Rivera, the former Lawrence mayor who was tapped by Gov. Charlier Baker to oversee the agency earlier this year.

“This team reflects the organization’s mission of being an elite economic and community development agency focused on stimulating business, driving economic growth, and helping communities thrive across Massachusetts,” Rivera said in a statement. “Theresa Park, Tania Hartford, and Marcos Marrero each bring a lifetime of professional experience, pedigrees as subject matter experts, and stellar reputations across the commonwealth. As the state’s finance and economic development authority, MassDevelopment has played and will continue to play a critical role supporting the commonwealth’s economic recovery in partnership with the Baker-Polito administration. These leaders will bring a wealth of professional experience and fresh ideas to our capable executive team, and I look forward to seeing all that we will achieve together.”

Park’s background includes 25 years of regional and municipal planning experience. That experience includes high-level planning positions in Lowell, Lawrence and Newton.

Park has a master’s degree in urban and regional planning from George Washington University and a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Massachusetts Amherst.

At MassDevelopment, she’ll be focused on program effectiveness and development.

In the nearly nine years he spent in Holyoke, Marrero oversaw the construction of numerous public and private development projects worth well over $100 million that revitalized the community. Before Holyoke, Marrero served on Baker’s Economic Development Planning Committee, the New York City Economic Development Corporation, the Pioneer Valley Planning Commission, the Puerto Rico Industrial Development Corporation and the Governor’s Office in Puerto Rico.

He holds a dual master’s degree in public affairs and urban and regional planning from the Princeton University School of Public and International Affairs, along with a bachelor’s degree in economics and political science from the University of Puerto Rico in Río Piedras.

“MassDevelopment is an integral part of the Baker-Polito administration’s economic development team, with its many financing products and real estate services helping spur economic growth across the commonwealth,” Mike Kennealy, chairman of MassDevelopment’s Board of Directors, said in a statement. “With the additions of Theresa Park, Tania Hartford, and Marcos Marrero, I’m pleased to see president and CEO Dan Rivera add a leadership team that reflects Massachusetts’ diverse economy and whose insight and experience will help the agency meet its mission of creating jobs, housing, and opportunity in every community.”