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TOOTRiS CEO Alessandra Lezama Joins San Diego Children’s Discovery Museum Board To Help Fuel STREAM Initiative

Science, Technology, Reading, Engineering, Art & Math Critical to Early Childhood Learning

The San Diego Children’s Discovery Museum has named TOOTRiS CEO Alessandra Lezama to its Board of Directors to help the nonprofit fulfill its mission to promote fluency in science, technology, reading, engineering, art, and math (STREAM) among young learners.

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While STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Math) has been at the forefront of education to prepare the future workforce, the San Diego Children’s Discovery Museum is focusing more broadly on STREAM content to serve a broader need in the community.

“Since we serve the littlest of learners, reading must be part of every aspect of their learning; we incorporate art as a platform to teach science, technology, engineering, and math concepts,” said Krishna Kabra, the Museum’s Executive Director. ”It is essential that all young children see themselves as capable of learning and understanding these fundamental concepts. Our goal is to help them build a lifelong interest in these areas. We believe we can, and we will reduce inequities in early childhood STREAM education.”

Originally founded in 1999 in Escondido as a traveling education program in science and art, the Museum now provides hands-on educational exhibits and programs focusing on science, art, and world cultures for over 100,000 annual visitors, including children, families and school groups.

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Since being named Executive Director in August 2020, Kabra – who has more than 20 years of experience in the corporate world – has reconfigured the Museum’s programs as virtual and distance-learning formats due to the pandemic.  By offering free, online activities, the Museum reached over 900,000 people from around the world via social media; distributed 3,200 free, hands-on science and art activity kits to local library branches; and served 4,378 local students through virtual workshops.

The Museum also established partnerships with the Oceanside Unified School District, San Diego Public Library Branches, and the Humane Society through virtual and distance-learning program offerings. The Museum is in the process of reopening safely onsite, and, in the fall, will resurrect its Mobile Museum that visits communities throughout the San Diego region. The Museum plans to continue offering virtual programming to reach more children and families.

“I applaud Krishna’s leadership and her ability to pivot the Museum’s programs and offerings to ensure our children continue to have an innovative and fun learning platform and experience,” said Lezama, who founded TOOTRiS in 2019 as a first-of-its-kind SaaS platform for on-demand Child Care. “I am honored to join the San Diego Children’s Discovery Museum Board and support its mission to make sure every child has an opportunity to blossom and succeed.”

Lezama, a seasoned technology executive, joins a Board of Directors that includes local business leaders and entrepreneurs who serve as advocates and ambassadors for the Museum.

“We are incredibly fortunate to have Alessandra on the team,” Kabra said. ”She is the ultimate passionate leader and powerhouse, and brings a tremendous amount of vision, expertise, and ambition. The Museum is at a critical point of inflection, and as we embark upon our next phase of growth, we need exemplary leaders like Alessandra to join us at the helm. She is courageous and committed, willing to lean in, roll her sleeves up, and do what it takes to guide the Museum to the next level. We have big, bold, audacious goals as an organization.”

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