MAPS 2020 Board of Directors Elections

As a member of the Middle Atlantic Planetarium Society, you have the privilege to vote for colleagues who will serve as your representatives on the MAPS Board. This year we have many wonderful candidates to choose from that will take three seats that are available.

MAPS members – check your inbox for your online voting invitation. Invitations will be sent on February 15, 2020. All votes must be submitted by February 29, 2020. We thank you for your participation in this election and in MAPS overall.

Review the candidates’ bios in the table below.


Candidate Bio

Tim Collins

Dear Friends and Fellow MAPS Members:

Having spent over 30 years at the great institutions I have been serving for so long now. I believe we must remain focused on delivering the awe of the stars and surroundings of our cosmic neighborhood. In addition, I have spent many years on the MAPS Web Committee, and almost as many as Chair, where I have strived to ensure that information is current and relevant to our organization, its members, and vendors. I am indebted to the quality and quantity of experiences and lessons, and always wish to do my best to repay each and every one of you for all of your wisdom and kindness.

With MAPS as an invaluable resource for educators, and with the path of totality during the 2024 eclipse in my region, I find myself in a rather unique position. I will be contacting all the planetariums within three hours of my location, discussing how we can share information with this great and rare eclipse. As I do so, I will also be able to suggest the networking opportunity they can receive by aligning (or in some cases re-aligning) their respective facilities with MAPS.

Having served so long as Web Committee Chair, I wish to take on a further leadership position with the MAPS Board of Directors, further adding to my service to our great organization.

Best Regards,
Tim Collins

Stephen Dubois

Greetings, MAPS Members. As most of you know I have served in the past as your Secretary on the Executive Board for two terms and hope to earn your vote to re-join the organization as Board Member for the upcoming term. I bring with me 33 years of experience as a planetarian both at the Whitworth Ferguson Planetarium as well the Williamsville Space Lab Planetarium. Throughout my years I have used both opto-mechanical and digital equipment as well as many outreach opportunities teaching under the authentic sky at local summer camps. An advocate of both new technology and traditional educational values, I believe that, first and foremost, a planetarium should replicate the experience of viewing the night sky under perfect conditions. The stars should always be central focus of any planetarium thus enriching the lives of the visitors, through deepened understanding of the skies above.

I have been around my hometown Planetarium for my entire life. As a young teenager, I began to learn the night sky and, after the summer of 1983, I set my goals on seriously studying astronomy. When I began my first semester of college, at Buffalo State in 1986, I joined the Astronomy Club and held many key positions including Vice President and President. In 1987, I was formally trained as an operator/educator and I have been working at the planetarium ever since. I have created curriculum, authored and directed several multi-media presentations while also working as production designer and illustrator. My greatest passion associated with this field, though, is music/soundtrack scoring and I have served as music director on most every show with which I have been involved. I have also composed original music for 8 planetarium productions, both locally and abroad, and always welcome the challenges associated with bringing diverse space science topics to life sonically.

For the last six years, I have co-chaired the MAPS subcommittee for our grant program with Kristen Chon and Sue Button. We evaluate the grant submissions and decide upon the level of funding to offer.

To me, being on the Executive Board is an opportunity to be a part of something where I can make a difference as well as getting to know the delegates. I have enjoyed learning from you in your talks and presentations, conversing with you at banquets, meeting with our ever-supportive vendors and also sharing with all of you over these past years (while both on and off the Executive board) my presentations such as "Are We Obsolete?", "Props in the Dark" and "Scoring for Science." I hope that you elect me so that I may continue my inolvement with MAPS: an organization which I care about so deeply. I feel that I have a lot more to give to this team and hope you will feel the same way. I will represent well the mission statement of the Middle Atlantic Planetarium Society and you, the membership. Thank you in advance for your support!

Lee Ann A. Hennig

I have had the honor of being a MAPS member for many years. My service includes holding several offices: Secretary, President Elect, President, and Board Member, as well as serving on various committees. I have attended, presented, and participated in many of the MAPS conferences. I also served as IPS Secretary for over 20 years, a position which provided new ideas, opportunities, and interactions with colleagues around the world. I retired from my planetarium last year and am now able to devote more time to making MAPS a more effective force for our members. We realize our organization can benefit from long term planning and goal setting specifically for improving services to the membership.

Through my work on the Board, I have attempted to improve the stature of MAPS as an organization and to extend and expand its benefits to the membership. My past experiences have underscored the importance of a Board that can work as a group, cooperatively, for the good of the organization and for the growth and in the best interests of its members and their concerns.

The opportunities and experiences I have gained from my past position as Secretary of the International Planetarium Society, experience in national associations for the advancement of astronomy education, and from serving in other organizations have provided critical skills and tools which also reinforce my service as a Board member in MAPS.

Although the technology of our field is evolving we still need to be inclusive and supportive of our entire planetarium community. Through the transition of my facility a Spits A3P to a SkySkan Definiti Digital System, I have learned how to deal with all the growing issues that come with that transition as well as the exciting possibilities. It is critical for MAPS to support strong leadership to face the challenges of our profession at all levels.

I have confirmed my impression of how crucial it is to have dedicated and motivated committees as a good base for our Society. As Education Chair it has been an honor to work with the other productive members of our committee in their quest for providing a service for our community.

The strength and soul of our organization is its membership and I will do my best to promote the goals and objectives of MAPS toward that philosophy. Thank you for the privilege of allowing me to be a candidate for office.

1. Director of Astronomy and Astrophysics Research at Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology (Fairfax County Virginia)
2. Director of the TJHSST Planetarium (SkySkan Definiti -30 ft Dome)
3. Coordinator of Research and Technology Labs at TJHSST

Francine Jackson

I have been in the planetarium field since 1973, and a MAPS member since going to my first meeting in 1978. Since then, I have been at several facilities, including Newport News, VIrginia, Manhattan, where I not only did planetarium shows, but taught adult classes and kids' program for twenty years. My last planetarium was on the campus of the University of Rhode Island, where I did programs for the astronomy classes, local schools, and the general public.

I have been staff astronomer for Brown University's Ladd Observatory for decades, where I write a weekly email on astronomy for close to 2,000 readers; also, as a member of the state's astronomical society, Skyscrapers, Inc., I write a monthly column on sometimes unique associations of life and astronomy. I am also Chair of my town's Conservation Commission, Secretary of the local historical society, and a member of my town's Technical Review Committee, where I am working to introduce the planner to the importance of light in a town such as ours.

In addition to astronomy, which I have loved since I was eight, I am now working on committees related to climate change, especially important for a state fairly surrounded by ocean.

Paul Krupinski

Greetings fellow friends and colleagues of the Middle Atlantic Planetarium Society! I am appreciative, once again, for a nomination to the Board of Directors of the MAPS Executive Committee. As an incumbent, I’ve had the opportunity to work with the Executive Committee since 2010. Our Board is always striving to serve and benefit YOU our valued membership.

I’ve served MAPS as your President Elect, President, and Past President from 2000-2006, which was truly an outstanding and rewarding experience. I’ve been apart of the ad hoc MAPS Strategic Planning Committee and with the committee I’ve collaborated on the following documents: the MAPS Executive Committee Calendar and Procedures, Conference Guidelines and Vendor Policy, as well as the MAPS Executive Handbook. In addition, I am currently the Chair of the Audit and Memorial Committees, as well as a member of the Elections Committee.

For those who are new to our planetarium community, I’m Paul J. Krupinski from Cheektowaga/Buffalo, New York. I’ve been a member of MAPS longer than I can remember, attended my first planetarium conference in Wheeling, WV in 1990. I’ve been so fortunate to meet new people, spend precious time at conferences with life-long friends, share some terrific ideas, as well as collaborate with the finest Planetarians this business has to offer.

The year 2020 marks my 27th year as Director/Owner of Mr. K.’s Mobile Dome Planetarium and my twenty five (25) year as show presenter
of the world renowned Strasenburgh Planetarium of the Rochester Museum & Science Center. In addition, it’s my 4th year teaching with a digital planetarium system for Intermidate and Middle school students at the Maryvale UFSD planetarium of my hometown in Cheektowaga, New York.

Finally, as many of you know, time doesn’t always allow the Board to complete the task or tasks at hand, which inadvertently improve our organization. Many ideas to improve value and benefits to membership are work-in-progress and need time to be brought to fruition! Therefore, I’d like the opportunity, once again, to continue with the Executive Committee to re-visit and complete unfinished business, while cultivating new innovative ideas, which will provide the Middle Atlantic Planetarium Society an even brighter future going forward. Thank you for the opportunity!


Paul J. Krupinski

Patty Seaton

I can’t believe that I’ve been in the planetarium business for 30 years now. I used to be one of the younger members! Now it is my joy to work with MAPS members who are both older and younger than me. I’ve seen a lot of great innovations thanks to MAPS over the last 30 years, and have remained active by attending most of the annual conferences during that time! I’ve hosted two conferences myself, in 2003 and 2009, and served twelve years in a row as President-Elect/President/Past-President (repeat). After I stepped down, I realized how much I missed being part of the decision-making process of the organization, so I ran again for Board. As the end of that two-year term approaches, I realize that there is so much more that I feel I can offer in terms of experience and creativity. As I am also currently serving as the Executive Secretary of the International Planetarium Society (IPS), I can continue to bring some of their innovations and ideas to MAPS. I can strength the relationship between IPS and MAPS, which is beneficial to both organizations. And honestly, I just love to serve the MAPS community. MAPS has provided me invaluable relationships and resources that all these years. It’s only fitting I continue to pay it forward!