Michael A. Rice

Michael Alan Rice, (born March 4, 1955) is an American professor of fisheries and aquaculture at the University of Rhode Island and former state representative from South Kingstown, Rhode Island. A Democrat, he served in the Rhode Island House of Representatives, representing the 35th district, encompassing the village of Kingston and West Kingston, and parts of the neighborhoods of Tuckertown, Wakefield and Peace Dale. Rice was first elected in November 4, 2008 and served from January 6, 2009 to January 4, 2011.

Michael A. Rice
Member of the Rhode Island House of Representatives
from the 35th district
In office
January 6, 2009  January 4, 2011
Preceded byJohn Patrick Shanley, Jr. (D-35)
Succeeded bySpencer E. Dickinson (D-35)
Personal details
Born (1955-03-04) March 4, 1955
San Jose, CA
Political partyDemocratic
Spouse(s)Rufina Delizo Rice
ChildrenMaria Isabel Rice
ResidenceWakefield, R.I.
ProfessionProfessor of Fisheries & Aquaculture at University of Rhode Island
Alma materUniversity of San Francisco,
University of California, Irvine
Known foraquaculture of bivalves
Scientific career
FieldsAquaculture, Environmental physiology
InstitutionsUniversity of Rhode Island
Doctoral advisorGrover C. Stephens

Education and early career

Rice was born in San Jose, California, to Richard Eugene Rice and Marilyn Joyce (Cardoza) Rice. He is a descendant of 19th-century Azorean settlers in California and a direct patrilineal descendant of New England colonist Edmund Rice.[1][2][3]

Michael Rice earned the rank of Eagle Scout in 1972 in Garden Grove, California. Rice attended Servite High School in Anaheim, California before attending the University of San Francisco, and graduating with a B.S. in Biology in 1977.[4][5] While working in the laboratory of physiologist Grover C. Stephens at the University of California, Irvine, he earned both a master's degree in biology in 1981 and a PhD. in comparative physiology in 1987.

Rice served in the U.S. Peace Corps in the Republic of the Philippines from 1981-85 working with the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources.[6][5] During that time, he worked to improve the sanitary quality of farmed oysters.[7][8][9] In 1982, while working with José Maria DeGuzman of Value Trading Company Inc. in Dagupan City, he helped establish the first commercially successful farm for serranid grouper fish in the Philippines.[10][11]

Academic career

Rice has spent most of his career in academia, first appointed to the faculty of the University of Rhode Island (URI) in October 1987.[12] His academic research interests are in the area of environmental physiology and ecology of bivalve molluscs,[13] and he has further research interests in the field of aquaculture.[14] His major contributions have been the demonstration that bivalve mollusks have the ability to absorb amino acids directly from seawater as a nutrition source, and that bivalves serve an important role in mediating the cycling of nitrogen and other nutrients within marine ecosystems. Additionally, he has studied the effects of shellfishing on the population ecology of bivalves. His research has led to refinements to the practice of managing shellfishery resources in coastal waters, estuaries and marine protected areas.[15]

Rice has made contributions the science of shellfishery management and to the growth of the aquaculture industry in Rhode Island,[16] and internationally,[17] including the Philippines,[18] Tanzania,[19] Georgia, Indonesia [20] and The Gambia.[21][22] Working with Enrico Beridze of the Iberian Pontomarine Aquaculture Company, he introduced mussel farming to the Black Sea coast of Georgia.[23] Rice has been the recipient of three Fulbright Scholarship awards: Republic of the Philippines 1996-97;[24] Indonesia 1997; and Republic of the Philippines 2006.[5]

At the University of Rhode Island he served as Chairman of the Department of Fisheries, Animal and Veterinary Science from 2000–04, and Chairman of the URI Faculty Senate from 2005-07.[6][25]

Civic involvement and politics

Rice has served from 1999 to 2000 as the president of the Tavern Hall Club, a not-for-profit organization in Kingston, RI dedicated to the preservation of the historic (1738) Elisha Reynolds House as a community meeting place and social center.[6][26] He has also served as the President of the University Club of URI from 1995 to 1996.[27] He was elected in 2007 to the board of directors and in 2008 as treasurer of the Edmund Rice (1638) Association, a genealogical and family history association that meets annually in Sudbury, Massachusetts.[28] In 2011, Rice was nominated by Bruce Sundlun and appointed by Lincoln Chafee as a Rhode Island Commodore.[6]

Prior to election to the Rhode Island House of Representatives in 2008, Rice served as an appointed member of a number of governmental commissions, including the Conservation Commission of South Kingstown from 1992 to 2008.[29] He chaired that commission from 1998 to 2008.[6] Also prior to election, he was appointed by the Speaker of the RI House of Representatives, to the Legislative Commission on Aquaculture Development (1995–1998),[30] to the Legislative Commission to Develop and Coordinate a Collaborative Effort to Formulate a Restoration Plan for the North Cape Barge Oil Spill (1999),[31] and as Legislative Commissioner proxy delegate to meetings of the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (1999–2000).[32]

In 2008, upon the decision of incumbent Rep. John Patrick Shanley (D-South Kingstown) not to run for a fifth term in the Rhode Island House of Representatives, Rice ran and was challenged by Republican James K. Haldeman for the open seat. In the election held on November 4, 2008, Rice defeated Haldeman by 57.5% to 42.5%, carrying each of the district's five precincts.[33]

During the 2009 legislative session, Rice served on the House Committee on Separation of Powers and Government Oversight. In the 2010 session, he served on the Committee on Environment and Natural Resources, and the House committees on Separation of Powers, Government Oversight, and Constituent Services, as well as the Special House Commission to Study the Structure and Workings of the Rhode Island Department of Transportation.[4][34][35]

Rice was defeated for reelection by Spencer E. Dickinson in the September 14, 2010 Democratic Primary by a margin of 52.8-47.2%.[36][37] He was targeted for defeat by the Rhode Island Labor Movement after voting to cut pension benefits for workers.[38]

In 2011, Rice was appointed to the Rhode Island Democratic Party State Committee representing at-large Rhode Island's 2nd congressional district, serving until 2017.[39] In 2013 he was appointed by Governor Chafee and received confirmation by the Rhode Island Senate to serve a two and a half-year partial term on the Rhode Island Marine Fisheries Council,[40] and reappointed for a first full term by Governor Raimondo.[41] He has been active with the American Association of University Professors.[42]

Selected publications

  • Rice, M.A., P.D. Rawson, A.D. Salinas and W.R. Rosario. 2016. Identification and salinity tolerance of the western hemisphere mussel Mytella charruana (D'Orbigny, 1842) in the Philippines. Journal of Shellfish Research 35:865-873
  • Rice, M.A. 2010. A brief history of the American Fish Culture Company 1877-1997. Rhode Island History 68(1):20-35.
  • Marroquin-Mora, D.C. and M.A. Rice. 2008. Gonadal cycle of northern quahogs, Mercenaria mercenaria (Linnaeus, 1758), from fished and non-fished subpopulations in Narragansett Bay. Journal of Shellfish Research 27:643-652.
  • Peitros, J.M. and M.A. Rice. 2003. The impacts of aquacultured oysters, Crassostrea virginica (Gmelin, 1791) on water quality and sedimentation: results of a mesocosm study. Aquaculture 220:407-422.
  • Rheault, R.B., Jr., and M.A. Rice. 1996. Food-limited growth and condition index in the oyster Crassostrea virginica (Gmelin, 1791) and the bay scallop Argopecten irradians (Lamarck 1819). Journal of Shellfish Research 15:271-283.
  • Rice, M.A., R.B. Rheault, Jr., M.S. Perez and V.S. Perez. 1994. Experimental culture and particle filtration by Asian moon scallops, Amusium pleuronectes. Asian Fisheries Science 7:179-185.
  • Rice, M.A., C. Hickox, and I. Zehra. 1989. Effects of intensive fishing effort on the population structure of quahogs, Mercenaria mercenaria (Carl Linnaeus 1758) in Narragansett Bay. Journal of Shellfish Research 8:345-354.
  • Manahan, D.T., S.H. Wright, G.C. Stephens and M.A. Rice. 1982. Transport of dissolved amino acids by the mussel, Mytilus edulis: Demonstration of net uptake from seawater by HPLC analysis. Science 215:1253-1255.
  • Rice, M.A. and P.K. Chien. 1979. Uptake, binding and clearance of divalent cadmium in Glycera dibranchiata (Annelida:Polychaeta). Marine Biology 53:33-39.

Selected legislation as enacted

  • 2009-H5690a. An Act Relating to Agriculture and Forestry—Diseases and Parasites. This act established the Asian long-horned beetle and emerald ash borer beetles as nuisances. It also established penalties for unlawful importation and transportation of these invasive beetles and infested logs.[43]
  • 2009-H6226aa An Act Relating to Fish and Wildlife -- Recreational Saltwater Fishing License. This act created a recreational saltwater fishing license and made it unlawful to fish in the marine waters of the state without first obtaining a license. Funds derived from licenses are for enhancing recreational marine fisheries.[44]

See also


  1. Ancestry.com. California Birth Index, 1905-1995 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2005.
  2. "RI House Portuguese Caucus" (PDF). RI House of Representatives Journal Volume 137, No. 57. p.91. June 8, 2010. Retrieved February 15, 2018.
  3. "Nathaniel N. Rice" (PDF). Edmund Rice (1638) Association Newsletter 91(1):9-18. Retrieved February 15, 2018.
  4. "Michael A. Rice Legislative Biography". Rhode Island Secretary of State. Retrieved March 22, 2012.
  5. "Guide to the Michael Rice Papers 1984-2014". University of Rhode Island Special Collections. Retrieved February 15, 2018.
  6. "Archived version of About Michael A. Rice". Archived from the original on November 21, 2008. Retrieved July 8, 2012.
  7. Rosario, W.M., N. Poquiz and M.A. Rice. (1982). Oyster depuration: one answer to polluted estuaries. International Center for Living Aquatic Resources Management (Manila) Newsletter 5(3):14. FAO Agris Depository
  8. Rice, M.A. (1992). "Bivalve aquaculture in warm tropical and sub-tropical waters with reference to sanitary water quality monitoring and postharvest disinfection", Tropical Science 32:179-202.
  9. Willie Lomibao (November 26, 2018). "Legacy on Footprints". Dagupan Sunday Punch, Dagupan, City, Philippines. Retrieved November 30, 2018.
  10. Rice, M.A. and A.Z. DeVera. (1998). Aquaculture in Dagupan City, Philippines. World Aquaculture 29(1):18-24. Web Access
  11. "Crab Cakes at the University of Rhode Island". www.bcfishmonger.com. Archived from the original on June 28, 2012. Retrieved March 28, 2013.
  12. p. 318 in University of Rhode island General Catalog 2011-2012 Archived July 22, 2012, at the Wayback Machine
  13. Rice, M.A. (2007). Bivalvia. pp. 141-44 In: Vol. 3, McGraw-Hill Encyclopedia of Science and Technology, 10th Edition. McGraw-Hill, New York. Web Access
  14. "University of Rhode Island: Michael A. Rice biography". Retrieved November 7, 2014.
  15. Rice, M.A., A. Valliere, and A. Caporelli. (2000). A review of shellfish restoration and management projects in Rhode Island., Journal of Shellfish Research 19: 401-08.
  16. "Rhode Island Aquaculture Situation & Outlook Report" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on July 20, 2011. Retrieved March 31, 2009.
  17. Rice, M. A. (2003). Aquaculture, pp. 372-417, in B. Hazeltine and C. Bull (eds.), Field Guide to Appropriate Technology. Academic Press-Elsevier Science, New York. ISBN 0-12-335185-5
  18. Emily Gowdy-Backus (April 23, 2018). "URI Philippine fisheries project receives $25M grant, largest in school's history". Providence Business News. Retrieved April 27, 2018.
  19. Rice, M.A., A. J. Mmochi, L. Zuberi and R.M. Savoie. (2006). Aquaculture in Tanzania. World Aquaculture 37(4):50-57 PDF Archived February 15, 2010, at the Wayback Machine
  20. "University of Rhode Island Gadeng UNCEN Buka Facultas Perikanan dan Ilmu Keluata". Papua Times. May 9, 2019. Retrieved September 23, 2019.
  21. Brett Warnke (January 27, 2011). "Rice studies aquaculture and water in The Gambia". Narragansett Times. Archived from the original on September 12, 2012. Retrieved July 8, 2011.
  22. Abdou Rahman Sallah (January 12, 2012). "Shoreline Water Quality Survey: Gambia's water relatively clean". The Point: Gambia. Retrieved January 15, 2012.
  23. Rice, M.A. (2009). Aquaculture in the Republic of Georgia. World Aquaculture 40(1):26-29. PDF Archived July 19, 2011, at the Wayback Machine
  24. Brian Gormley (December 27, 1999). "Michael A. Rice". Providence Business News. Retrieved November 30, 2018.
  25. "Senate Resolution R05-06-4 in appreciation of Chairperson Rice". University of Rhode Island Faculty Senate. Archived from the original on May 30, 2010. Retrieved May 31, 2012.
  26. Tavern Hall Club and Preservation Society Presidents. p.20. In: Tavern Hall Preservation Society 100th Anniversary. Tavern Hall Preservation Society, Kingston, RI 21pp.
  27. "URI University Club". Retrieved May 1, 2009.
  28. "Edmund Rice (1638) Association". Retrieved May 1, 2009.
  29. "South Kingstown Conservation Commission". Archived from the original on April 18, 2010. Retrieved June 5, 2009.
  30. "1997H-6929 Aquaculture Commission". Archived from the original on February 24, 2012. Retrieved April 12, 2009.
  31. "1999H-6460 Oil Spill Commission". Archived from the original on February 24, 2012. Retrieved April 12, 2009.
  32. Minutes of meetings of Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission, Atlantic Beach, NC (April, 1999); Portland, ME (June 2000); Portland, ME (October, 2000); and Atlantic City, NJ (December, 2000). ASFMC, 1440 Eye St. NW Washington D.C. ASMFC.
  33. "Rhode Island Board of Elections: Representative in General Assembly District 35, 2008 general election". Retrieved January 27, 2009.
  34. "Rhode Island House Journal 1-7-2009" (PDF). Rhode Island House of Representatives. Retrieved January 9, 2010.
  35. "Rhode Island House Journal 1-5-2010" (PDF). Rhode Island House of Representatives. Retrieved January 9, 2010.
  36. "District 35 2010 Primary Results". Rhode Island Board of Elections. Retrieved September 15, 2010.
  37. "A Rough Night for RI House Democratic Incumbents". WPRI.com. Retrieved November 20, 2011.
  38. Elk, Mike. "Look to Rhode Island for How to Target Anti-Labor Democrats". September 21, 2010. In These Times.
  39. "2013 RI Democratic State Committee Membership" (PDF). RI Democratic State Committee. Retrieved May 29, 2014.
  40. "p.14 Senate Journal 11 June 2013" (PDF). Rhode Island Senate. Retrieved June 22, 2013.
  41. "p.6 Senate Journal 16 June 2016" (PDF). Rhode Island Senate. Retrieved April 4, 2017.
  42. "URI-AAUP Political Action Committee". Retrieved April 28, 2015.
  43. "2009-H5690a" (PDF). Rhode Island General Assembly. Retrieved September 14, 2014.
  44. "2009-H6226aa" (PDF). Rhode Island General Assembly. Retrieved September 14, 2014.
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