Erika Eng Thumbnail
Executive Director

Erika Eng joined the Discovery Team in 2016, and since then has worn many hats within the organization, from Business Operations Director, to COO, to her most recent role as Executive Director. After graduating from SUNY New Paltz in 2004, she pursued a career in the Aerospace industry as a sales executive until the birth of her son in 2012. Now a mother of 2, her passions lie in community, inclusivity, and education. As a child, she attended a museum magnet school in Yonkers, NY, and notes that experience as something she draws on, giving a unique perspective to her current role. She is honored to work in that space now, and to be able to offer those same opportunities to students in the Bridgeport region.

Contact Erika

Sarah Tropp-Pacelli Thumbnail
Director of Education and Strategy

Sarah Tropp-Pacelli joined the Discovery team in 2015 after graduating from Brown University. She began as a science educator and now serves as Director of Education and Strategy. She holds a master's degree in education from Fairfield University. Sarah is thrilled to be a part of Discovery’s mission to inspire wonder in all visitors and create a community that is passionate about and literate in STEM.

Contact Sarah

Elliot Severn Thumbnail
Planetarium and Technology Director

Elliot Severn joined Discovery as a science educator in 2016 and now serves as the Planetarium and Technology Director. He attended the Trumbull High School Agriscience program and Alfred University, earning a Bachelor's degree in Environmental Science in 2013. Since the end of the Space Shuttle program, he has worked as a freelance photojournalist documenting NASA, military, and commercial space missions. He also has a passion for amateur astronomy and is an active member of the Boothe Memorial Astronomical Society in Stratford.

Contact Elliot

Eileen Bakos Thumbnail
Director of Development

Eileen joined Discovery in February, 2020, as Director of Development. Previously, she spent 13 years working with Habitat for Humanity of Coastal Fairfield County. Eileen is excited about the opportunity to bring new educational experiences to children from the Bridgeport neighborhoods where she has built affordable homes. “I consider the families I’ve partnered with at Habitat as part of my own family and being able to expose them to quality STEM programs at a young age is the next step on the road to a stable and secure future.”

Contact Eileen

Tana Barnes Thumbnail
Director of Guest Services and Administration

Tana joined Discovery in 2018, after working in the veterinary world for 20 years. She is excited to work with the Discovery team to create an amazing experience for visitors, whether they are here for a regular STEAM filled visit or renting the space for a party!
Tana moved to CT to attend college at University of Hartford where she received a degree in Psychology.

Contact Tana

Alex Young Thumbnail
Director of Exhibits

Alex Young joined the Discovery team in 2021 as the Exhibits and Facilities Manager. After graduating from the University of Connecticut with his Bachelor's in Pathobiology, Alex spent several years as a special education paraprofessional and STEM tutor. Following his work in education, he worked as a Prop and Set Designer, specializing in immersive shows that focused on inclusivity and accessibility for their guests. He is excited to bring his love of STEM education and his experience in immersive ventures together to create amazing new educational experiences for all young scientists!

Contact Alex

Michelle Lewis Thumbnail
Director of Community Science

Michelle Lewis joined the Discovery team full time in 2016. She worked as a part time educator for several years prior to that, both at Discovery and at the Maritime Aquarium. Michelle has a degree in Marine Biology, but loves science of all kinds and is loves sharing her knowledge with people of all ages.

Contact Michelle

Jillian Wyckoff Thumbnail
Director of Finance

Jillian Wyckoff joined the Discovery Team in 2016 as a science educator, and now serves as the Director of Finance. She is excited to apply her passion for working with data and systems to the benefit of Discovery, and to helping to bring STEAM education to life.

Contact Jillian

Linda Smith Thumbnail
Executive Assistant

Linda joined the Discovery Science Center in April 2016 as a part time receptionist after retiring as an Office Manager/Executive Assistant for 20+ years from a local environmental engineering firm. She was later put in charge of Memberships and Donation Requests. She is now Executive Assistant to our Executive Director and Director of Development. She oversees our database entries, as well as the needs of her two Directors, and helps in the administration of the State of Connecticut bond improvements. Linda has been a Bridgeport resident for 45 years and is very excited about the direction in which the Science Center is moving and the improvements being made to Bridgeport’s hidden jewel.

Contact Linda

Board of Trustees Thumbnail

Michael P. Alfano  - Board Chair
Mary Servino  - Vice Chair
David Zieff  - Treasurer
Antonietta M. Cotton  - Secretary
Vance Hancock
Jamie Moss
Jani Pallis
Daniel D. Thomas
Jennifer Mahoney
Peter Ward


Lifetime Trustees Thumbnail

Jeffrey M. Clair
Mellie Cooper
Martha B. Gesswein
June Getraer
Guy Hatfield
Bruce A. Hubler
Edward Lahey
Pat Matteson
Alice V. Meyer
Patrick J. Regan
Mrs. John Stokes
James Tice
William Wallace