Harold G. Marshall

Numbers tell the story of Harold Marshall’s success as an administrator and aquatic biologist.

He joined the Old Dominion faculty in 1963 and became chairman of the Department of Biological Sciences in 1969. During his 21 years of leadership, the department grew from a faculty of seven to 26, with expanded academic programs. He published 131 articles in scientific journals and made more than 150 presentations at professional meetings in the United States and abroad.

Marshall received more than $5 million in grants from state and federal agencies to study oceanic and Chesapeake Bay phytoplankton populations. He has used NASA satellite photos to identify phytoplankton populations in the ocean and bay and thus to measure the health and productivity of the waters.

Although Marshall retired in 1995, he still works full time at his campus office and receives more than $300,000 a year in grants to fund his research. In recent years, he has been much in the news for his role in a study of a fish-attacking microbe called Pfiesteria. In 1997 Pfiesteria killed millions of fish in North Carolina and hundreds of thousands in Maryland and Virginia.
The Richmond Times-Dispatch called Marshall “the state’s detective on the trail of the serial killer Pfiesteria.”


Quest Fall 2005 • Volume 8 Issue 2