Board of Trustees

President Matthew Missias has a BA, MA, and PhD from Michigan State University, with his PhD in Curriculum, Teaching, and Educational Policy. He currently works as an education policy consultant. Matt’s background as an educator, along his with critical thinking skills, assists the Museum with educational theory, policy development, and solid strategic planning.

Executive Vice President Dan Smith is a Co-founder and the Business Development Director at Flight Path Creative, an advertising agency based in Traverse City, where it represents clients from across the country. Dan’s sound business sense, communication skills, and strong marketing abilities are all valuable contributions to the Museum.

Vice President Cecily Sanford holds her BA from the University of Toronto and completed post graduate studies in Cleveland, Ohio. She is an AMI-certified Montessori guide with many years’ experience, committed to advocating for education and encouraging children to explore the world in ways that inspire a deep appreciation for life. Cecily is also committed to addressing environmental concerns. She brings an educated and broad perspective that helps to guide the authentic experiences at the Museum.  She is a mother to two wonderful young boys and to a fine young man in college.

Treasurer Marissa Milliron has an MBA from Davenport University and is a CPA at Dennis Gartland & Niergarth with experience in organizational audits and tax preparation. She brings a keen eye and financial acumen to planning and reviewing the Museum’s financial position. Marissa is deeply committed to helping make our community better for all children.

Secretary Erica Mohr was born and raised in Traverse City and is a graduate of Western Michigan University. Erica has been a Pharmaceutical Sales Professional for the past 14 years.  She recently made a career change to pursue Real Estate and join her family business. Erica’s energy, creativity, and enthusiasm are all valuable contributions to the Museum, as is her commitment to use her networking skills for creative fundraising and team building.

Kate Flewelling is an attorney with Smith Haughey Rice & Roegge who practices in the areas of business and corporate law, construction law and real estate, and health law. She has been recognized for her service to pro-bono clients. Kate received a Bachelor of Arts degree, Cum Laude from Northwestern University, and her Juris Doctor (also Cum Laude) degree from New York University School of Law.  Kate thinks that it is especially important for parents with fewer resources to have a healthy, safe learning environment for their children.

Teri Gorsline is the founder/publisher and editor of the local lifestyle publication Baylife North Magazine, based in Traverse City. Her strengths are marketing, communications and sales. The magazine is adored by the community, and this gives her the opportunity to enjoy flourishing relationships with readers, business owners and organizations.  Teri has a “can-do” attitude, creativity, energy and passion. She believes wholeheartedly that raising children in the Great Lakes area is the best place on earth.

Sara Kime is a graduate of Fort Lewis College with a BA in Anthropology, and is a former museum and nonprofit professional, specializing in volunteer management and educational programs. As a former Americorps National Civilian Community Corps member, she is passionate about children’s issues and making a difference in her community.

Kristy Kurjan is the author of Nap-a-Roo children’s board book. Based out of Traverse City, Michigan she is a writer, stylist and creative entrepreneur. Mother to identical twin boys, the fun never stops! She is excited to be a part of the Great Lakes Children’s Museum Board of Trustees.

Genevieve Minor has 15 years of teaching experience and currently works at Traverse City West Senior High as the Media Specialist. She earned a Bachelor’s degree is in Speech Communication from the University of Utah and a Master’s degree from Michigan State University in Teaching and Curriculum Design. She is married and has two boys.

Kelly Mitchell majored in Community Parks and Recreation at CMU, focused in program development, with a minor in Public Affairs and Political Science. She and her husband own and manage 1250 acres of cherry orchards. Kelly’s recreation background, along with her agricultural business experience, brings unique and valuable assets to the Museum.

Ann Neuenschwander recently moved to Traverse City (our gain!)   She was the Director of Development at the Ann Arbor Hands-on Museum for more than ten years, where her portfolio included all aspects of fundraising.  The Museum benefits from her ability to develop fundraising efforts to complement an organization’s needs as identified through its strategic plan.

Beth Schmitt relocated from the Detroit area to Traverse City in 2010 and continues to work remotely as a Marketing Manager for Entertainment, the leader in fundraising over the last 50 years. She brings sales, marketing, and business development expertise and also the enthusiasm for community service.  After having two children of her own, she has developed a passion for child development and learning. She wants to help children become life-long learners and to find joy in discovering new things!

Marissa Wege is a Traverse City native, active community member, and committed volunteer who is involved with numerous local organizations supporting activities for education and children. Marissa earned her Bachelor’s Degree in English Language & Literature from the University of Kingston.  She is skilled in both fundraising and event planning, bringing those indispensable skills to her role as Trustee. Marissa is dedicated to bringing new ideas for the growth and development of the Museum.

Rachel White has a degree in Child Development and has worked with agencies and nonprofits whose missions are to improve the lives of children, especially those who have been abused or neglected. The Museum benefits from her understanding of children’s issues and early childhood development, and from her desire to devote her energies to doing good in the community.