Retirement Party and Gifts

Marine Biological Laboratory
Policy No. C.2.1

Communications Office

Initiated by:Special Events Coordinator
Approved by:MBL Director/CEO
Date:May 23, 1989
Revision:#2, November, 2001
Distribution:MBL Senior Staff

1.0Policy Statement:
At the time a staff member leaves the employment of the Marine Biological Laboratory, the Laboratory wishes to acknowledge the service of staff in an appropriate and equitable manner.


2.1For staff members who have more than 10 years of service at the MBL, the Human Resources Manager should inform the Assistant Director of Communications (ADC) at least one month in advance of an employee’s retirement. The ADC will coordinate the party and gift selection with the retiree’s supervisor or department head. The retiree’s department is responsible for developing a guest list, sending out invitations, handling RSVPs, and giving the ADC a final guest count a week prior to the party.

2.2The Department is responsible for functions for staff who have worked at the MBL less than 10 years using the general guidelines below. For staff who have been at the MBL less than 5 years it is appropriate to host a small informal departmental gathering at the end of the final work day and present the departing staff member with a card and best wishes, etc.

3.0Employees with 5-10 years of service:
An informal gathering of co-workers in the MBL community should be arranged by the staff member’s department for 4 PM on the last day of work. Food and beverages should be arranged by the Department as well as an appropriate gift paid for from departmental funds. If individual co-workers would like to give the staff member a gift, this should be done privately.

4.0Employees with 10-20 years of service:
A wine and cheese “toast” or similar informal gathering should be held at 4 PM in the Swope Center or some other appropriate meeting area at the MBL. All employees, family members, and appropriate members of the local community should be invited to attend. The Director should be encouraged to speak briefly and present the gift, as should appropriate supervisors or employees. Departments and friends should be discouraged from giving other gifts at the party. This should be done privately, if at all.

4.1The gift should be a matted and framed print.

5.0Employees with 20+ years of service:
The general party guidelines are the same as in 4.0

5.1In addition to the matted and framed gift, the retiree should also be presented with a more personal gift. General budgetary guidelines for this additional gift should be discussed with the ADC and the Supervisor. The gift should be chosen carefully with the help of close friends, spouse, etc.

Each Department is responsible for the expenses associated with a retirement party. The Assistant Director of Communications will discuss budgetary guidelines for the reception and the gift for 20+ years of service.

7.0Policy Clarification and Updates
Policy clarification and updates are available from the Office of Communications.