President, Discovery Science Center
2003 – Present
Joe Adams became President of Discovery Science Center in 2003. Known for his creativity, strategies and focus on operational excellence, Adams has grown Discovery Science Center’s museum and outreach attendance to over 720,000 students and parents combined annually.
This year, First Lady Michelle Obama presented to Mr. Adams the National Medal of Service from the Institute of Museum of Library Services. The Medal is the highest honor achievable for a museum. Discovery Science Center is the only Science Center in California to ever receive this prestigious recognition and one of only six science centers in the nation.
Mr. Adams enjoys the creative process as he was the inventor of several educational attractions including Dino Quest, Eco Challenge, the Boeing Rocket Lab, and the Science of Hockey to name a few. He now looks forward to the next phases of expansion in Santa Ana and opening a new science center in Los Angeles’ San Fernando Valley in 2014.
Before joining the Center, Adams worked for the Walt Disney Company as Program Manager in their Theme Park Development Division. He was involved with the design and construction of several attractions, restaurants and shops throughout the Disneyland Resort including Paradise Pier, the Tower of Terror, Bugs Land, and California Screamin’ Rollercoaster. California Screamin’ is the 8th longest rollercoaster in the world and the fastest coaster in the Disney collection.
Adams holds a Master of Business Administration from the University of California, Irvine, and a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering with an Energy Concentration from the University of Notre Dame. Adams’ motto is that success comes by dreaming and then chasing after it. He lives in San Juan Capistrano with his wife Mechelle, daughter Lisa, and sons Dylan and Jack.