New Museum President Brings Track Record of Vision and Success
Worcester, Mass. – July 23, 2018 The EcoTarium museum of science and nature enthusiastically announces the selection of Lucy Hale as its new President. The EcoTarium Search Committee chose Hale based on her breadth of experience as a nonprofit leader in the science, nature and wildlife fields, having assumed progressively more leadership responsibility at the Dallas Zoo & Children’s Aquarium at Fair Park, Perot Museum of Nature and Science, and most recently, as Executive Director of Trinity River Audubon Center in Dallas, Texas. The museum welcomes Hale at a pivotal moment of continued record-breaking attendance and membership, amid the final phase of the Third Century Plan campaign that has reinvigorated the campus, garnered national recognition for the collaboratively-produced City Science exhibit, and built a reputation as an educational asset in the Commonwealth and beyond.
“After a seven-month international search, Lucy emerged as our top candidate due to her expertise, results-orientation, and collaborative approach to leadership. Her background is the ideal mix of educator, programs/exhibits developer, curator, and fundraiser,” shared Paul Belsito, Chair of the EcoTarium Board of Trustees and President of Hanover Insurance Group Foundation. “We are excited about what the future holds and believe that Lucy is the right person to guide the museum into its third century.”
Hale brings vision, enthusiasm and a track record of collaboration to the museum as it prepares to celebrate its upcoming 200th anniversary in 2025. In addition to her professional work, she serves on a number of boards with an emphasis on informal education, including with the Informal Science Education Association of Texas, Village Tech Schools and the John Bunker Sands Wetland Center. She gives back to her community by serving as a mentor in the University of North Texas Professional Leadership Program and has spent time as a hotline volunteer and trainer with the Dallas Fort Worth wildlife coalition.
As Executive Director of the Trinity River Audubon Center, Hale leads one of the National Audubon Society’s flagship nature centers, successfully restructuring and rebuilding the center and securing grant funds to sustain key programs, expanding them across Texas through collaborative efforts with other nature centers, funders, and formal education partners. Earlier in her career, she shepherded education and program teams at both the Perot Museum of Nature and Science and Dallas Zoo, and curated the living collection at the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History. She was part of the curatorial team at the Museum of Science in Boston, MA, when the institution received accreditation from the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, the first science museum to achieve this status.
At the EcoTarium, President Hale’s leadership efforts will focus on advancing the nation’s second oldest Natural History Society’s continued commitment to developing engaging, inquiry-based experiences for visitors of all ages. “I am honored to be a part of this vibrant and historic institution,” shared Hale. As a passionate advocate for informal education, and science education in particular, she understands the role environments like the EcoTarium play in a young person’s life. “I am impressed by the EcoTarium’s leadership in the design and delivery of programs and exhibits that excite and engage students and support the important work of STEM educators,” she added. “We have similar core values – to cultivate natural curiosity and lifelong learners from an early age. It is thrilling to join this institution at an important time for education in the Worcester community as well as the Commonwealth.”
Hale will join the EcoTarium on August 20, just in time to support two highly successful events: Countdown to Kindergarten on the same day and Free Fun Friday on August 31. She will oversee the completion of Wild Cat Station, scheduled to open in the spring of 2019, and launch the final phase of the Third Century Plan campaign.
About the EcoTarium
EcoTarium is New England’s leading museum of science and nature, an indoor-outdoor experience dedicated to inspiring a passion for science and nature in visitors of all ages. Founded in 1825, it has been a leader in informal science and nature education for nearly 200 years, and today welcomes more than 175,000 visitors per year. Highlights of the 45-acre campus include a museum building with three floors of interactive exhibits, the Alden Digital Planetarium: A National Geographic Theater, daily Science Discovery programs, live animal habitats, nature trails through forest and meadow, seasonal narrow-gauge railroad Explorer Express Train, and its expansive interactive outdoor exhibit, Nature Explore®. It also offers a variety of sponsorship, membership, and giving opportunities for businesses and organizations.
The EcoTarium, located at 222 Harrington Way in Worcester, Mass., is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.; Sundays 12 noon to 5:00 p.m. General admission is $18 for adults, $14 for children 2-18, $14 for seniors 65+ and students with ID, and children under 2 are free. Planetarium shows and Explorer Express Train require additional ticket. Parking is free. For more information, visit ecotarium.org.