MBL Society


The Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL) invites qualified scientists to become members of the MBL Society. From its inception in 1888, the MBL Society has been guided by scientists who are invested in the MBL and its future.  Under authority established by the Board of Trustees, members of the MBL Society serve in an advisory capacity and as a resource to provide scientific and other guidance at the request of the MBL leadership.

The MBL Society has hundreds of Members and Emeritus Members, who comprise scientists, dedicated alumni, and committed and informed friends with a history of discovery at, commitment to, and interest in the MBL and its programs.

Members of the MBL Society are led by a Speaker of the Society who is appointed by the MBL President/Director.  The current Speaker is Colleen Cavanaugh and she is guided by an MBL Society Steering Committee.

“Our Society’s role is to provide good will and support for the MBL’s mission, contribute to the ongoing sustainability of the Laboratory, and provide helpful advice to the leadership of the MBL. As active members of the MBL Society, we are the vibrant network of scientists and supporters that make up the MBL family.”
Colleen Cavanaugh, Speaker, 2016





Why Join the MBL Society?We look forward to growing our Society by encouraging scientists and students who have participated in the educational or research programs to embrace their history with the MBL and apply for membership directly.

Benefits of becoming a Member:

  • Join a thriving, active, and life-long network of fellow “MBLers”!
  • Invited to participate in the MBL Society Annual Meeting and reception
  • Year-round access to the MBL Lillie Library
  • Eligible for nomination to Science Council (Note: Student members cannot serve on Science Council)
  • Eligible to serve on MBL Committees
  • Free online subscription to the Biological Bulletin
  • Discount at the MBL Gift Shop
  • Receive MBL publications

Annual Dues

To remain a Member in good standing, Members must pay annual dues. Reminders are sent prior to the beginning of the fiscal year. For July 1, 2018-June 30, 2019, the dues are: Regular Investigators, $100; Beginning Investigators, $50; Student Members, $25; and Emeritus Members, $0.

Dues can be paid with cash, check or credit card by returning the dues payment form included with your annual reminder or online.

Applying for Society Membership

A complete application includes: 1) a filled-in application form, 2) a CV, and 3) two endorsements by current Society members. To use the form, you must have the latest version of Acrobat Reader installed on your computer. Click here to download Adobe Acrobat Reader.

The application form should be filled out, saved, and e-mailed with your CV as an attachment to MBLSociety@mbl.edu. Endorsements may be e-mailed separately to MBLSociety@mbl.edu. The Science Council will review applications for approval at their meetings during the year.

MBL Society Annual Meeting

The Speaker of the MBL Society presides over an Annual Meeting each summer for Members and Emeritus Members in good standing (2019 date: July 23, 2019).  The MBL President/Director and the Chair of Science Council provide annual reports during the Business Meeting.  The meeting emphasizes transformative ideas and cutting-edge research being conducted by scientists throughout the MBL, and the highlight is a scientific symposium, bringing renewed emphasis and engagement of the MBL Society in the MBL’s scientific mission and new strategic directions.

Science Council

The MBL Science Council is an advisory group consisting of not more than 15 scientists elected by Members of the MBL Society. Science Council is one of the major advisory groups that provide their support, knowledge, and experience to the leadership of the MBL.