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Emily Fox has headed the Discovery Center of Springfield for several years now. Find out about her part in making the center a reality and about growing up in El Paso, TX. Michele Skalicky reports.
The Discovery Center of Springfield opened to the public on January 25, 1998 with Emily Fox at the helm. Fox, who was instrumental in getting the Discovery Center started as a volunteer with the Jr. League of Springfield, took over as C.E.O. in 1996.
Last year, the center opened to the public a brand new addition that was unique in that it qualifies as a "green" building."
But it wasn't always planned that way. Fox says the Discovery Center's master plan was completed in 2000. Discovery Center staff and board members had since designed a building for where the old Trailways building stood. It had a cost on it and fundraising for the project was finished.
But plans were to change, thanks to Fox, who had just heard about "green" building
The building had to be totally re-designed and needs reevaluated, but Fox believes whole-heartedly that it was worth it
The new Discovery Center addition is green in many ways starting with how the old Trailways building was deconstructed to how the new building sits on the site to the materials, the construction waste plans, the HVAC system and the concrete, which allows water to filter through.
Fox has become extremely passionate about green building and is involved with the Heartland Chapter of the USGBC. The Discovery Center is a member.
Fox is pleased to see more and more projects in SW MO going "green." She hopes the Discovery Center is having an impact on that
Besides influencing the "green" building movement, Emily Fox hopes the Discovery Center is creating in kids an appreciation for life-long learning
The Discovery Center offers programs both in-house and off-site, a variety of hands-on exhibits and distance learning.
Fox explains why it's important to have a science center in a community
The Discovery Center relies heavily on its approximately 88 volunteers, and Fox wishes they had more. She's a strong believer in volunteerism—she's involved in a variety of organizations in Springfield—and says getting involved adds to the appreciation of where you live