Paolo Parravano

Co-Director, Office of Government and Community Relations
Office of the Executive Vice President and Treasurer
Award presented by
President Reif

The MIT Staff Award for Distinction in Service is given annually to a staff member at MIT whose service to the Institute results in positive lasting impact on MIT's community. For the award's first year in 2022, it was presented at the MIT Excellence Awards + Collier Medal celebration.


We have one final award this afternoon – the brand-new MIT Staff Award for Distinction in Service – and it celebrates an MIT icon.

In more than 30 years of service to MIT, Paul Parravano has won the admiration, affection, and respect of countless individuals, inside and outside MIT. Officially, Paul serves as co-director of the Institute's Office of Government and Community Relations. But you will have a better sense of his true role and his impact if I tell you that Paul is often referred to as the "Mayor of MIT."

On any given day, Paul might be representing MIT in vital discussions with local, state or federal officials, or improving science education in the local public schools, or greeting international dignitaries, or making sure that our Cambridge neighbors feel welcome on campus.

But no matter what else he is doing, Paul never stops thinking about the well-being of MIT students. He mentors them individually and advocates for them collectively, from MIT to Capitol Hill.

Paul's wisdom and experience are equaled only by his good humor and kindness. As one of his colleagues says, "Paul is an important person who doesn't act like an important person. He makes everyone feel they have an equal place at the table."

Paul, we are delighted to honor you with the very first MIT Staff Award for Distinction in Service.