Thinkery is Austin’s home for “why” and “how.” A place where science and families play side by side. Where people connect with ideas by doing, making and experiencing. It’s a foundry for a new generation of innovators and creative problem solvers. And it’s a heck of a good time.
To create innovative learning experiences that equip and inspire the next generation of creative problem solvers.
A creative community with a passion for lifelong learning and discovery.
We will be INCLUSIVE by making every facet relevant and accessible to all.
We will promote EXCELLENCE as a dynamic standard for which we serve at the very best of our ability.
We will amplify RESPECT by treating people with honor and dignity.
We will spark INNOVATION by embracing risk and seeing failure as lessons learned.
We will encourage PLAYFULNESS with the confidence to let go and enjoy.
We will foster COOPERATION by working together to form a collaborative best.
We will unleash CREATIVITY by exploring the path between what is and what can be imagined.
Austin Children’s Museum was founded in 1983 by a grassroots group of parents and educators who wanted local children to have more educational and cultural opportunities. At that time we were a “museum without walls”—our founder drove tabletop exhibits around town in her station wagon and presented activities and programs in schools, parks, libraries and even malls.
In 1987, we settled into our first brick-and-mortar home – a 5,000 square foot building on West 5th street. For the next ten years we presented exhibits, experiences, and educational programs for local kids and families. During this time, we developed exhibits that traveled to other children’s museums around the country, gaining quite a reputation.
West 5th Street Location
By the mid 1990’s, Austin was booming and we had outgrown our home. Fortunately, the community recognized the importance of our organization and supported an expansion campaign. The result was our 1997 move to Downtown Austin’s warehouse district. Relocating to our 2nd Street facility through a 10-year, rent-free lease was a huge step for Austin Children’s Museum, but we knew when we opened the doors that Austin was growing and we’d eventually need to expand.
In December 2013, Austin Children’s Museum became Thinkery and opened at its new location – a 40,000 square foot facility in the Mueller community. Thinkery delivers its mission through a variety of exhibits and programs that focus on science, technology, engineering, art and math (STEAM). Museum activities revolve around educational experiences led by staff, so each visit is different from the last.
Thinkery, at the Meredith Learning Lab. Architectural and building
design by Koning Eizenberg and STG Design. Exhibit design by Gyroscope, Inc.
2016-2017 Executive Committee
Jessica Palvino, Board President
Susan Espinoza, President Elect
Richard McDonell, Treasurer
Mint Builders, LLC
Mollie Butler, Secretary
Butler Nonprofit Consulting
Members at Large
HR Executive Services, LLC
Lisa Henken Ramirez
Rachel L. Irvin
Cypress Point Wealth Management
Amy Clark Meachum
Judge, 201st District Court
West Austin Youth Association
Carla Piñeyro Sublett
the number lab
2015-2016 Yuen Yang
2014-2015 Peter Donovan
2013-2014 Carla Pineyro Sublett
2012-2013 Russell Young
2011-2012 Rosalind George
2009-2011 Jed Buie
2008-2009 John Graff
2006-2008 Sylvia Maggio
2005-2006 Judy Corder
2005-2006 Shannon Ratliff, II
2004-2005 Susan Engelking
2003-2004 Juan Garcia
2002-2003 Kirk Dando
2001-2002 Gerald Torres
2000-2001 Gregory A. Kozmetsky
1999-2000 Marla Bommarito-Crouch
1998-1999 Jim Susman
1997-1998 Lynn Meredith
Patricia “Trish” Young Brown, Chief Executive Officer, joined Thinkery on January 17, 2017. Trish has over 20 years of experience leading multiple healthcare and community based organizations, most recently as President and CEO of Central Health, the Travis County Healthcare District created by the voters of Travis County in May of 2004. Trish is a long time member of the Austin Area Research Organization, a nonpartisan group of 100 community committed business leaders that champion regional solutions to regional challenges. She is a Certified Public Accountant and holds a BS in Accounting from the University of Denver. She is currently a part-time student at the Episcopal Seminary of the Southwest pursuing a Masters in Spiritual Formation (MSF) degree.
Dr. Robin Gose, Director of Education, earned her doctorate in Educational Leadership from the University of California, Los Angeles. Dr. Gose has served as a STEM educator for 16 years, both in classrooms and in museums. Her previous work experience includes Austin Nature and Science Center and the California Science Center in Los Angeles, where she managed public programs, professional development, volunteers, and school tours. Dr. Gose has been with Thinkery since 2014.
Adrienne Longenecker, CFRE, Director of Development & Marketing, has a BFA from the University of Texas at Austin. Adrienne was formerly associated with Austin Pets Alive!, EMANCIPET and the Capital Area Food Bank, where she was the Chief Development Officer. She has her Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE) certification, one of only 3,500 in the nation and more than 15 years as an executive team member of complex for profit and nonprofit businesses. Ms. Longenecker also held numerous leadership positions with the Association of Fundraising Professionals, Greater Austin Chapter, and with Leadership Austin. Ms. Longenecker has been with Thinkery since 2014.
Devin Thomas, Director of Finance, has been working with nonprofit organizations across the country in the areas of finance and operations for over fifteen years. Before he began working at Thinkery in 2014, he was the Director of Operations for Artspace, a visual arts center and artist studio building in Raleigh, NC where he led the organization to develop benchmarking and analytic tools for measuring performance and designed a three-year budget process. Prior to that position, Devin was the Business Director for InsightLA, a mindfulness meditation center in Los Angeles. Trained as an orchestral musician, Devin has a BS degree from Indiana University and began his career working in the administrative offices of symphony orchestras, serving for several years as the Executive Director of the Norwalk Symphony in Connecticut. When he is not at work, Devin enjoys cooking, listening to (and making) music and being a dad.
Thinkery is firmly commitment to your privacy. We do not collect personally identifying information about you when you visit our site, unless you choose to provide such information to us. Providing such information is strictly voluntary. This policy is your guide to how we will handle information we learn about you from your visit to our website and museum.
Use of Links
Within our website, we may provide links to other servers which may contain information of interest to our readers. We take no responsibility for, and exercise no control over, the organizations, views, or accuracy of the information contained on other servers. Creating a text link from your website to our site does not require permission.
Use of Text and Images
If you would like to publish information that you find on our website, please send your request to email@example.com. Where text or images are posted on our site with the permission of the original copyright holder, a copyright statement appears at the bottom of the page.
This website is designed to be accessible to visitors with disabilities, and to comply with federal guidelines concerning accessibility. We welcome your comments. If you have suggestions on how to make the site more accessible, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Reading or Downloading
We collect and store only the following information about you: the name of the domain from which you access the Internet (for example, if you are connecting via a Time Warner Cable network or AT&T network), the date and time you access our site, and the Internet address of the website from which you linked to our site. This is all information obtained through Google Analytics. We use the information we collect to measure the number of visitors to the different sections of our site, and to help us make our site more useful to visitors.
Contact Information and Donations
If you complete the online profile update form and share your personally identifying information, this information will be used only to provide you with more targeted content. We may use your contact information to send further information about our organization or to contact you when necessary. You may always opt-out of receiving future mailings; see the “Opt Out” section below.
In supporting Thinkery, whether through donations or membership, we will ask that you provide personal information to us, including name, address, email, and phone number. This information will be used to correspond with you regarding to your support. We will never sell your personal information. We will occasionally share Member information, specifically names and addresses (we will never share your giving history, phone number or email address) with like-minded non-profit organizations in Austin. To request that your name and address not be shared, please send an email request to email@example.com.
Sending us an Email
You also may decide to send us personally identifying information, for example, in an electronic mail message containing a question or comment, or by filling out a Web form that provides us this information. We use personally identifying information from email primarily to respond to your requests. We may forward your email to other employees who are better able to answer you questions. We may also use your email to contact you in the future about our programs that may be of interest.
We will not obtain personally identifying information about you when you visit our site, unless you choose to provide such information to us. Providing such information is strictly voluntary. Except as might be required by law, we do not share any information we receive with any outside parties.
If you sign up for one of our email lists, we will only send you the kinds of information you have requested. We won’t share your name or email address with any outside parties.
Opt-Out or Change Your Contact Information
You may choose to receive only specific communications (such as our newsletter) or none at all. You may also update your contact information previously provided to us through another online form. You can not remove yourself from our database, but you can prevent unwanted communication. To request that your name and address not be shared, please send an email request to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Periodically, Thinkery takes photographs and video of museum visitors and activities for use in promotional material. These photos and videos do not identify visitors (unless given expressed consent), and are used to highlight Thinkery exhibits and events as well as our museum mission and key values. Upon entering Thinkery, you give permission to the museum for the recording of photographs and/or video of yourself and your dependents. You grant the museum all rights to post these images on our social media and other purposes which advance the overall mission of the museum. All rights to the photographs and video belong to the museum. If you want a photograph or video removed of yourself or dependents on any of our web channels, please contact us at email@example.com.
Periodically, Thinkery takes photographs and video of museum visitors and activities for use in web and social media material. These photos and videos do not identify visitors (unless given expressed consent), and are used to highlight Thinkery exhibits and events as well as our museum mission and key values. With admission into Thinkery, you give permission to the museum for the recording of photographs and/or video of yourself and your dependents. You grant the museum all rights to post these images on our social media, and other purposes which advance the overall mission of the museum. All rights to the photographs and video belong to the museum. If you want a photograph or video removed of yourself or dependents on any of our web channels, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Questions about our policies
If you have any questions about this privacy statement, the practices of this site, or your dealings with this website, you can contact us at email@example.com.