Princeton Administrator Marc Dashield, who has held the Municipality of Princeton’s top administrative post for six years, will retire early next year.
Dashield will be retiring effective April 1, 2021, capping a 27-year career in public service in which he has served in various capacities in towns and cities across New Jersey. He came to Princeton from Montclair, where he was the township manager and chief operating officer.
“I find now is the time for me to move to a new chapter in my life, where I can spend more time with my family and explore other personal interests,” he said.
Dashield took over from former Municipal Administrator Bob Bruschi. Bruschi was the consolidated town’s first municipal administrator, and the former Princeton Borough administrator. The Town of Princeton was formed when the former Princeton Borough and the former Princeton Township consolidated in 2013.
During his 27 years in public service – first in the U.S. military and then in local government – Dashield said he has had the opportunity to lead two of the state’s top communities as the municipal administrator in Princeton and the township manager in Montclair. In both towns, he was the first Black to be appointed to those posts.
Earlier in his career, Dashield held several positions in Franklin Township. He was the township’s municipal clerk, finance director and assistant township manager. He was the city administrator for the City of Plainfield and the executive assistant for the City of Elizabeth.
Looking back on his six years in Princeton, Dashield said the accomplishments that he is most proud of are the ones that have a long-term impact on the Princeton community and that have a direct impact on the lives of residents.
“With that said, I am most proud of my stewardship of the Princeton Fire Department as it transitions to a combination fire department,” Dashield said.
The Princeton Fire Department, which had been an all-volunteer fire department since it was organized in 1788, moved to become a combination fire department this year. A combination fire department has a blend of paid firefighters and volunteer firefighters.
In its new configuration, the Princeton Fire Department is staffed around the clock by two-member teams of paid firefighters and is supplemented by volunteer firefighters. A crew of firefighters is ready to leave the Princeton Fire Department’s headquarters immediately upon being dispatched.
“The transition to a combination fire department has already demonstrated a significant increase in the safety of our residents,” he said. There is a shorter response time because there are firefighters ready to leave the firehouse at all times.
Dashield said he is also proud of the work that has gone into developing two units of affordable housing on Lytle Street, next to the Mary Moss Playground.
The project involved working with Habit for Humanity and community groups to develop an opportunity for new affordable housing in the Witherspoon-Jackson neighborhood.