Wayne Marquis

Wayne Marquis, a longtime Danvers public servant who set the “gold standard” for municipal management and dedicated his time to both the MMA and MIIA, died on June 8 at age 69 after a battle with cancer.

Marquis had served as the town manager in Danvers from 1979 until his retirement in 2014, which made him the state’s third longest-serving town manager at the time. Before becoming town manager, he had served for a few years as the assistant town manager, giving him a total of almost four decades of service to the town.

Marquis served as an MMA policy committee member and chair, was deeply involved in the leadership of the Massachusetts Municipal Management Association and the International City/County Management Association, and was instrumental in the success of MIIA, as a founding board member and chair of the board for many years.

MMA Executive Director Geoff Beckwith remembered Marquis for his kindness, his respectful and gentle approach to issues, and his effective leadership.

“Wayne will always be remembered as the gold standard for professional management, and for living his life following the Golden Rule, treating every person with dignity and respect,” Beckwith said. “He was a mentor, a life-long learner, a deeply skilled manager, and a true public leader who inspired his friends and colleagues to be their best selves at work and at home. The MMA, MMMA and MIIA are all better thanks to his longtime support and involvement.”

A lifelong Danvers resident, Marquis is also being remembered for numerous contributions to the town, including his leadership in modernizing the town’s municipal electric division, Danvers Electric; his role in the effort to transform the Essex Agricultural School into what is now the Essex North Shore Agricultural and Technical School; and his service to residents after a chemical explosion in Danversport destroyed or damaged dozens of homes just before Thanksgiving in 2006.

After retiring, Marquis continued to serve on the Danvers Retirement Board, and served on Salem State University’s board of trustees. He was also engaged with numerous other civic and community organizations.

Marquis leaves behind Nancy, his wife of 46 years, two children and two grandchildren.

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