CEO of EdVenture Children's Museum in Columbia resigns

Karen Coltrane, president and CEO of EdVenture Children's Museum in Columbia, is resigning to accept the position of CEO for the Leadership Center for Excellence in Arlington, Va.

Coltrane has led EdVenture since January 2015. During her tenure, she merged the Columbia museum with the Children's Museum of South Carolina in Myrtle Beach. She also is preparing for the opening of a satellite museum in Hartsville. She also expanded the permanent gallery space in Columbia to include the cockpit of a Boeing 757 as part of the new "Flight" exhibit, made possible with a grant from NASA.

“EdVenture is brimming with potential," Coltrane said in a statement. "But what most excites me is the success we’ve had in expanding access to the museum. Admission funded by our Yes, Every Child Initiative (for children and families on public assistance) has increased from 5,600 people in 2014 to over 24,000 this year. EdVenture offers wonderful museums for families, and it is important that all families can enjoy them.”

Coltrane came to Columbia from the Children's Museum of Richmond, Va., where she was president and CEO.

James Becker, EdVenture's incoming chairman of the board of trustees, said the board will work over the summer on a leadership transition.

EdVenture will begin celebrating its 15th anniversary later this summer.