Bay Area Discovery Museum Announces New Chief Executive Officer – Bay Area Discovery Museum

Bay Area Discovery Museum Announces New Chief Executive Officer

Kelly McKinley will succeed current CEO Karyn Flynn

Sausalito, CA – The Bay Area Discovery Museum (BADM) announced today that its Board of Trustees has appointed Kelly McKinley as the new CEO of BADM, effective January 2020. Ms. McKinley will succeed current BADM CEO Karyn Flynn, who announced in April that she would step down from the museum at the end of 2019. Following her departure from the museum in December 2019, Ms. Flynn will continue to advise on the museum’s BOLD campaign and on the on-site renovations, including the museum’s relationship with the National Park Service. 

“It’s an honor and a privilege to join the beloved Bay Area Discovery Museum at this moment of transformation. BADM offers our region a haven for imaginative play, creative expression, discovery, and community connection. I look forward to partnering with the staff and the Board to build on the museum’s extraordinary 30-year legacy of enriching the lives of young children and their caregivers.” 

Ms. McKinley’s appointment represents the culmination of a comprehensive national search conducted by the BADM Board’s Search Committee, in partnership with executive search firm Russell Reynolds Associates. 

“As a Committee, we took very seriously our responsibility to be stewards of the legacy that Karyn will be leaving at the museum,” said Search Committee Chair and board member Tina Bou-Saba. “Kelly stood out as an experienced and highly-regarded museum leader and we felt strongly that she would be the right person at the right time for the institution.”

Ms. McKinley joins BADM at an exciting time in the museum’s history. In February 2019, BADM announced BOLD: Spark Curiosity, Inspire Innovationits $18.5mm campaign for the Bay Area Discovery Museum. Renovations are currently underway on the first of four new, innovative exhibits to open on the BADM campus by the end of 2020. Additionally, BADM continues to experience significant growth in its school and community partnership programs, reaching more than 26,000 children around the Bay Area through its STEM Workshops and Try It Truck visits. On-site attendance exceeds 350,000 visitors annually, including 10,000 BADM member households and more than 80,000 visitors who receive free or reduced admission. BADM also recently announced the national expansion of its Reimagining School Readiness Toolkit, which will be rolled out to libraries in 18 states over the next three years. 

“As the museum begins its next chapter, we welcome Kelly’s deep museum expertise, experience with families and early learners in the museum context, and forward-looking strategic vision for the role that museums can play in the community,” said BADM Board Chair, Vijay Mohan. 

Ms. McKinley joins BADM from the Oakland Museum of California (OMCA) where she served as Deputy Director. Prior to her six years at OMCA, Ms. McKinley held leadership roles at the Art Gallery of Ontario in Toronto, Canada; and the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego. She serves on the Board of the American Alliance of Museums. 

About the Bay Area Discovery Museum
The Bay Area Discovery Museum is a children’s museum in Sausalito that applies the latest research to develop early learning experiences that inspire and build creative problem-solving skills in children, transforming the way they learn and the way they contribute to the world. As a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization, the museum provides STEM-focused, inquiry driven experiences that develop creativity and conceptual thiking, critical components of problem solving.


Scroll to Top