New president for the Saint Louis Science Center | St. Louis Public Radio

New president for the Saint Louis Science Center

Nov 9, 2011

A former executive at the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago has been named president and CEO of the Saint Louis Science Center.

The St. Louis Business Journal reports that Bert Vescolani will replace Doug King, who left almost a year ago to head the Museum of Flight in Seattle.

Vescolani has been at the John Ball Zoological Garden in Kalamazoo, Mich. since 2006. He spent nearly 15 years at the Shedd before that. His selection ends a 10-month search process - Phil Needleman filled the position on a temporary basis.

In a statement, the chairman of the Science Center's board of commissioners, Theodore Hellman, called Vescolani a "talented and experienced non-profit executive.

"We are extraordinarily pleased to have him join our institutions as its president and chief executive officer. I look forward to working with Vescolani in the continued pursuit of our organization's mission, igniting and sustaining lifelong science and technology learning."


The Business Journal does not mention how much Vescolani will be paid. The Science Center had come under fire over the summer for being the only institution in the Zoo-Museum District that awarded performance bonuses to its top executives, and for having the largest percentage of its payroll devoted to top executives. The museum changed its pay structure in October.