Dean Rizzo, Principal

Dean Rizzo - Dean Rizzo Head Shot

Dean brings over 25 years of experience as a public, private and non-profit administrator with the ability to effectively communicate a vision and build consensus among diverse audiences, broad interests and multi-disciplinary entities. 

Dean earned a dual Bachelors in Economics and Sociology degrees from UMass Boston followed by a Masters of Public Affairs degree at the McCormick Institute within the UMass system.  Additional certifications obtained by Dean include Non-profit Management from the US Chamber of Commerce Institute, Downtown Management from the National Trust for Historic Preservation, and Community Preservation from the Donahue Institute at UMass.

His most recent professional leadership experiences include his role as the Executive Director of the MassHire South Shore Workforce Board from 2016 to 2020, and President of the Quincy Chamber of Commerce & Executive Director of Quincy 2000 Collaborative (501c3 EDIC) from 2003 to 2016. Prior to 2003, Dean was a self-employed business owner for eight years; started and administered a non-profit community development organization in the Town of Cohasset; worked as historic and Preservation Planner for the Town of Plymouth, and served as the community Development Manager for the South Shore Chamber of Commerce. 

These various roles have provided Dean a great deal of experience in organization management, non-profit administration, entrepreneur development, regional planning, training, fundraising, budgeting, community engagement, volunteer management, small business creation and regional economic development.  Dean helped to create and administer the Life Sciences Corridor – a cooperative economic development initiative between the communities of Quincy, Cambridge, Boston, Somerville and Braintree to attract biotech and life science companies to the region.  In 2013 Dean created the vision and established the plan to design, fund and administer the Quincy Center for Innovation - a self-sustaining 20,000 sqft. co-working facility.   

As the Executive Director of the MassHire South Shore Workforce Board Dean administered state and federal programs to build a skilled workforce to meet the demands of businesses through Sector Strategy Initiatives.   One of the primary objectives was to establish equitable and sustainable career pathway opportunities for individuals of all ages and abilities through a collaboration of public, private and non-profit partners. 

Dean has directed numerous marketing and branding campaigns to promote and implement a vison on behalf of various public/private sector organizations and community development projects.  Dean has extensive community engagement experience, and is very comfortable managing within the public/private partnership organizational model.  He understands the many opportunities and challenges associated with operating non-profit and community-based organizations with a mission to address the needs of its clients through advocacy, educational programs, quality resources, professional management and responsive action.  Recognizing that the road to success is forging a common ground among diverging perspectives, Dean has built a successful track record of securing grant funding and financial investments through corporate foundations, private entities and public agencies.

Dean resides in the Town of Plymouth with his family where he remains involved as Board of Director with Plymouth Community Housing, Inc., a Trustee for the Church of the Pilgrimage and a Boy Scout Troop Leader.  Dean was co-founder of the Plymouth Farmers' Market with his wife Barbara and helped manage the market for ten years. Dean was an elected member of the Plymouth Redevelopment Authority for over eight years.  In his role on the Plymouth Redevelopment Authority Dean collaborated on a variety of redevelopment and affordable housing programs, including the 2016 conversion of a former Plymouth County Courthouse property into a new Town Hall in the center of Downtown Plymouth.

Dean and Barbara established Sand Dollar Strategies in 2016 as a dynamic and responsive consulting agency.

Dean and Barbara enjoy hosting an Airbnb located in the historic Plymouth waterfront area where they welcome travelers from around the world.  Click Here for details

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