Antonio M. Calcado has served as the Executive Vice President for Strategic Planning and Operations and Chief Operating Officer at Rutgers since 2016. In this two-part oral history conducted by ROHA Director Shaun Illingworth and History Professor Dr. Paul Clemens, Calcado discusses his family's roots in Portugal, childhood, education, career and experiences during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Calcado grew up in the Ironbound section of Newark and earned his undergraduate degree in political science at Seton Hall and Master of Public Administration at LaSalle University. In a career at Rutgers spanning more than thirty years, Calcado has held a number of leadership positions, including Vice President of Facilities and Capital Planning, and Senior Vice President of Institutional Planning and Operations. He is a leading expert on deferred maintenance. As the Emergency Management Coordinator, Calcado directs the University's responses to crises.
Topics discussed in the interviews include preventative maintenance, involvement in professional organizations, Hurricane Floyd, Y2K, the merger of Rutgers and the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey and subsequent establishment of Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences, Hurricane Sandy, public safety issues, development of the College Avenue and Livingston campuses, emergency preparedness, and the 2030 master plan.
In the second session, Calcado delves into the Covid-19 pandemic. He traces the opening of the Emergency Operations Center and mobilization of the Rutgers COVID-19 Task Force during the early days of the pandemic in February 2020. Having contracted the virus in March, Calcado discusses his own experiences battling Covid-19, during which time he was hospitalized. He explores the University's response to the pandemic, highlighting considerations that have factored into decision-making involving a number of topics, including switching to remote instruction, repopulating campuses, and dealing with the impact of the financial crisis.