The Donald Palladino Fellowship

The Donald Palladino Fellowship

The Donald Palladino Fellowship is offered by Friends of Herring River in memory of Donald J. Palladino. Don was a leader in the community’s efforts to restore the Herring River estuary to its natural tidal flows and was a founding member and President of the Friends of the Herring River, working with the Herring River Restoration Committee of the Cape Cod National Seashore, the Town of Wellfleet, and Town of Truro. Don was a kind, generous, considerate, selfless, unflappable man and a champion for the environment. Friends of Herring River is incredibly fortunate to have had him as our leader.

The purpose of Friends of Herring River is to promote education, research and public awareness of the Herring River estuary as one of critical environmental concern, to preserve the native environmental integrity of the river and estuary, to ensure habitat protection and retention of the native biological diversity and productivity of the river and estuary, to retain and enhance public access to the river and estuary, to preserve natural and historic sites, and to promote public awareness.

Friends of Herring River is pursuing this mission by undertaking the following activities:

  • Informing and educating the public on the progress and key issues in order to build community-wide support for the project.
  • Implementing outreach activities to ensure timely and effective public involvement in the restoration project.
  • Supporting restoration objectives and worthy scientific, environmental, historical, educational and recreational programs by fundraising, volunteering and other useful activities.

Friends of Herring River is actively engaged in the planning for the implementation of the project, fundraising, public outreach and education as well as conducting the herring run count each spring.

About the Fellowship

Proposals will be accepted in the areas of natural science, environmental science, environmental studies and engineering with the focus on Wellfleet Harbor and its estuaries, especially the Herring River.

Funding requests will be considered up to a maximum of $3000.  Only one Fellow will be selected each year.  Funding will be reserved for a project or part of a project that is not funded by other sources.

The fellowship is open to anyone, regardless of student or professional status. Research fellows must be self-directed individuals whose work will contribute to the scientific knowledge of the natural resources of the estuaries of Wellfleet Harbor.  The fellow must be able to complete the proposed project within one year, and provide a final report, even if the project is part of a larger thesis project. Recipients may apply for an additional Research Fellowship in subsequent years, but project proposals will be evaluated independently of the previous year’s work.

Funds may be used for a variety of purposes, including salary support; room, board, and travel directly associated with fieldwork; supplies; and analytical costs. Funds may not be used to support indirect costs (overhead).

Some Additional Research Considerations

Researchers who are working within the Cape Cod National Seashore must obtain permits from the National Park Service (NPS).

Provisional Acceptance Pending Research Permit

If working within National Seashore boundaries, acceptance into the Palladino Fellowship Program is provisional until a Research and Collecting Permit from NPS is approved and issued. Initial acceptance as a Fellow is not a guarantee that a Research and Collecting Permit will be issued for the work as written in the proposal. Modification of methods or sites may be necessary. Information on applying to conduct research in any national park may be found at the NPS website

Important Dates

The deadline for fellowship applications is March 1, 2021. Late proposals will not be considered. Awards will be announced as soon as possible (hopefully by end of March). Awards will be disbursed in two payments:

  1. 80 percent at the outset of the field work (on approval of Research Permit);
  2. The remaining 20 percent when all specified project deliverables (see requirements below) final report, presentation/poster at Wellfleet Harbor Conference, summary, photos with captions, significance) have been received by the Friends of Herring River. These deliverables are due within six months after the completion of field work.

Application Process

Individuals wishing to apply for the research fellowships should submit an Application Cover sheet and the following documents electronically to Friends of Herring River, c/o Barbara Brennessel, Clerk:

  • A Cover sheet with:

Investigator Name, affiliation, mailing address, phone, email, Project Title, budget and amount of funds requested. Dates and duration of the project.

  • A Research Proposal that contains the following sections, with headings:
    1. Project title
    2. Research objectives
    3. Statement about the significance of this project to environmental knowledge and/or management of Wellfleet Harbor
    4. Methods
    5. Project budget for Fellowship funds
    6. Project timeline, including tentative dates for fieldwork
  • A Curriculum Vitae or Resume that lists background, qualifications, and research experience, manuscripts or published papers, presentations, etc.
  • For current students, a letter of support from an academic advisor or principal investigator is required. This may be submitted with the proposal or sent electronically by the reference directly to Friends of Herring River. Palladino Fellowship and your name should appear in the subject line.

Proposals will be evaluated by Board members of Friends of Herring River.

The following criteria will be used to determine which project is funded.

  1. Completeness of proposal (Are all the items listed above included?)
  2. Technical merit (Does the project have scientific or scholarly merit? Are the study questions and methods clear?)
  3. Feasibility and ability of investigator to complete the work (Is it realistic for the timeframe suggested? Does the researcher have some experience or credentials to be able to competently do this research?)
  4. Potential of the work to boost Fellow’s professional development (Will the work provide new/unique opportunities?)
  5. The significance of the project to the understanding and management of Wellfleet Harbor, especially its estuaries and/or the Herring River.

Requirements of Award Winners

Each fellow is required to provide these items to the Friends of Herring River within six months from completion of field work. Exceptions need to be arranged with the FHR Education Committee.

  1. Poster or presentation of the research at the annual State of the Harbor Conference in Wellfleet. This event is usually scheduled for the first Saturday in November.
  2. Electronic copy of the final report (title, key words. abstract, intro, methods, results, and possible practical applications).
  3. A copy of any thesis, dissertation or publication resulting from this work.
  4. Several digital photos (jpg or tiff) of research/field work in progress, with captions for photos in a separate word document
  5. A statement of how this funding was useful in enhancing the research program/ career path of the recipient.
  6. Researchers who are working in the National Park must also fulfill all conditions of the Park research permit, such as submitting an Investigator’s Annual Report and complying with guidelines for collections.

Contact Information

Direct questions to: FHR Education Committee member and Clerk, Barbara Brennessel.


The Donald Palladino Fellowship Cover Page