After nearly 12 years in this role, Dr. Suzanne Mitchell will retire as Executive Director of the Arkansas STEM Coalition and be replaced by Hannah Vogler.
Mitchell was one of the group’s founding organizers in 2010 along with Jerry Adams, John Chamberlin, and James Hendren, business leaders advocating for supporting and improving STEM education and opportunities in Arkansas.
“The Arkansas STEM Coalition was founded on the principle that STEM MATTERS and the study of STEM subjects is essential to the state’s competitiveness in this knowledge-based economy,” said Mitchell.
The Arkansas STEM Coalition Board of Directors includes 30 senior executives from companies and organizations that employ skilled STEM workers in Arkansas.
The Arkansas STEM Coalition sponsors leading programs, including the flagship Science Equipment program, funded through the sale of Arkansas educational license plates. The program provided funds for the Arkansas STEM Coalition to distribute more than $1.1 million in science equipment to 294 public elementary schools serving 61,600 students in grades 3-6.
Other activities include STEM Girl Leadership Lectures for girls in grades 7-12, Health Science Career Tech Days for grade 8 students, STEM Venture Academy for students in 10th grade and a laptop loaner program for educational and community organizations.
“Suzanne has provided leadership, collaboration and encouragement to the Board of Directors over the past 12 years of growth. We salute his incredible ability to imagine, explore, and spark the curiosity of community leaders in Arkansas and the United States,” said Paul Rich, Chairman of the Board.
New executive director Hannah Vogler took over in January. She has spent over 20 years in the nonprofit world. Most recently, she served as executive director of the Pulaski County Imagination Library and the Argenta Community Development Corporation. She also co-founded The Colon Club, a national nonprofit that educates young people about colorectal cancer after her cousin Amanda died of colon cancer at age 27.