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Board, Staff and Explorer's Council


Board and Staff

Executive Staff

Carter Arnot Polakoff
President & Chief Executive Officer , Port Discovery Children’s Museum

When Port Discovery Children’s Museum was in the planning stages, preparing to create and open the doors to Baltimore’s first destination designed specifically for children and families, Carter Arnot Polakoff was so inspired by the mission, vision and potential that Port Discovery held for the families in her hometown that she transferred from Denison University in Ohio to Goucher College in Baltimore, Maryland just so that she could pursue an internship at Port Discovery and become a part of the team that helped open the doors to playful learning and magical memories. 

Carter’s commitment to children and families, her passion for her community, and her eagerness to learn, grow and dream alongside colleagues and community members led her become a permanent part of the founding Port Discovery team that helped design, create, test, and present hands-on programs, exhibits and experiences that have inspired the imaginations and dreams of millions.

In 2020, this same commitment led Carter back to Port Discovery Children’s Museum to assist with fundraising, operations, and advancing the Museum after spending more than 20 years at Baltimore School for the Arts growing from a Development Associate to becoming the Foundation Director for this leading institution.

Today, Carter is proud and delighted to serve as Port Discovery’s President & CEO, a title she earned in the Fall of 2021. She’s always had a special place in her heart for Port Discovery Children’s Museum, and her passion shines through as she works to lead Port Discovery’s teams of educators, dreamers, planners, and play experts to create powerful, memorable experiences that bring communities together.

Carter believes strongly in the power of childhood memories and the impact that a day of play can have – and she wants every child and family to experience the joy, the happy memories, and the magic that can come from children and their caregivers spending time together playing, learning, dreaming and connecting with others.

Carter’s goals – of which there are many – include inspiring people near and far to benefit from the magic that play can bring to people’s lives. She also is passionate about leading Port Discovery’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion work, building relationships with community members to help develop programs, experiences, resources and places where community can connect through play, and inspiring staff members, partners, and donors to help fuel initiatives that will create magical memories that children and families will carry with them throughout their lives.

Carter lives in Baltimore City with her husband Sam, her teenage sons Nate and Samson, and dog Hogan. She is a graduate of Goucher College and is also a 2019 graduate of Baltimore's flagship civic engagement program, The Leadership. Carter has more than 20 years of experience planning and coordinating collaborative education and artistic programs and creating deep relationships with civic organizations and nonprofits, and is recognized as one of Baltimore’s top fundraisers, leaders and mentors. When Carter isn’t working, you’ll often find her playing at Port Discovery, enjoying time with friends and family at community events and festivals, or relaxing near a riverbank.


Board of Directors

Dennis F. Rasmussen – Chair
President –
The Rasmussen Group

Monica Brandes – Vice Chair
Senior Vice President –
Bank of America

Carim Khouzami – Vice Chair
Chief Executive Officer - 

Mark Pollak, Esq. –Secretary
Partner –
Ballard Spahr, LLP

Gordon M. Stetz, Jr. – Treasurer
Retired Chief Financial Officer - 
McCormick & Co., Inc.

Holly Carnevale 
Partner - 

Stephen Canaras
Partner, Growth Markets - Assurance - 
Ernst & Young LLP 

Angela Celestin
EVP and Chief Human Resources Officer - 

William S. Corey, Jr.
Board of Directors –
Stewart Title, GSE Systems and Fundbox

Sal Dhanani
Vice President, Corporate Strategy –
T. Rowe Price

Daniel Fulmer
Administrative Vice President - Retail Senior Sales Strategy and Planning Manager - 
M&T Bank

Robert E. Gabrys, Ph.D.
Chief Educational Program Officer -
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

Jeffrey Graham 
Director, Commercial Finance - 
Pandora Jewelry 

Randy Guttman 
General Partner & CFO - 
JMI Equity 

Kathleen S. Hardway
Partner –
Venable, LLP

Charlie Hatter
Owner -
Prime Building Advantage & Monument Sotheby's International Realty​

Dana Henson
Vice President –
The Henson Development Company

Anthony V. Imbraguglio
Vice President Finance, US Consumer Products Division - 
McCormick & Company

Dominique Kelly
Senior Medical Director –
BioMarin Pharmaceutical Inc

Matthew D. Klaiber
Principal –
Miles & Stockbridge P.C.

Chad Lane
President –
Allegis Global Solutions

Clarke Langrall, Jr.
President –
Forecast Strategic Advisors

M. Gay G. Legg

Brooke Lierman
Maryland State House of Delegates

Jennifer B. Litchman, MA
Senior Vice President for External Relations
Special Assistant to the President -
University of Maryland, Baltimore

William Palmer
Executive Vice President –
Flavor & Fragrance Specialties, Inc.

Melanie Perreault
Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs –
Towson University

Brice Phillips
Vice President - Business Development & Sustainability -
 Phillips Foods, Inc.

Thomas S. Pilkerton III
Partner -
DLA Piper

Teresa Payne-Nunn
Vice President and Chief Member Officer -
Executive Leadership Council

Christopher S. Ripley
President & CEO –
Sinclair Broadcast Group

Shantell Roberts
Founder and Executive Director –
Touching Young Lives, Inc.

Daniel T. Russell, CPA.ABV.CFF, CVA, CFE, MSA
Partner -
HeimLantz CPAs & Advisors, LLC

Barbara Tachovsky

Morry Zolet
Executive Director -
The Zolet Lenet and Fink Group at Morgan Stanley

Douglas L. Becker
​Chair Emeritus
Founder and Chairman –
Laureate Education, Inc.
Founder and Partner –
Sterling Partners

President’s Advisory Council

Kurt Schmoke – Chair
President –
University of Baltimore

Anirban Basu
Chairman & CEO –
Sage Policy Group

Nancy Grasmick, Ph.D
Co-Director –
Kennedy Krieger Institute

Aris Melissaratos
Former Secretary –
Maryland Department of Business & Economic Development 

Janet Marie Smith
Sr. Vice President, Planning and Development - 
Los Angeles Dodgers

Michele Whelley
Economic Alliance of Greater Baltimore


Rick Williams
Vice President, Finance

Kelli Coffman 
Vice President of Sales & Operations

Rachel Demma
Vice President of Education and Learning Innovation

Abbi Ludwig
Vice President of Marketing & Communications

David Berman
Director of Exhibits

Sonja Cendak
Director of Development

Segrid Pearson
Creative Director


Explorer's Council

Explorer's Council Members  

The Explorers Council is an auxiliary board that serves to further the mission of Port Discovery Children's Museum by engaging the next generation of patrons and volunteers to promote awareness of the Museum's service and impact in the greater Maryland area. Council members dedicate their time, resources, enthusiasm and social connections to achieve the goals of increasing public awareness, contributions and visitor attendance at Port Discovery Children's Museum. This Council provides networking opportunities for members as well as opportunities for "fun"draising. The Council allows socially responsible individuals the chance to give back to their community in a meaningful, enjoyable, and mutually beneficial way.

Elizabeth Greenblatt, Chair
Portfolio Manager – M&T Bank

Ben Ballard
Sr. Manager Investment Product Marketing 
T. Rowe Price 

Katie Beltz 
General Manger & Owner – Snug Books LLC

Brian Bourne 
Global Federal Account Director – Century Link 

Christopher Burns 
Associate – Saul Ewing Arnstein & Lehr 

Zachary Bussey 
Senior Account – Eureka Strategic Consulting 

Stanley Carignan 
Attorney – State Farm

Jessica Chernyavsky 
President – Xander Government Solutions 

Ciera Gallub
HorizonWALKS & Horizon on Wheels Coordinator 
Horizon Day Camp

Kyle Goodwin
Director of Technology Solutions 
Terrapin Pharmacy 

Tim Hartnett 
Client Advisor – JP Morgan Chase 

Wendy LeNoir 
Chief of Staff to CEO - BGE

Sean Sutherland 
Director of Accounts – Kapowza 

Debra Temple
Director, Human Resources and Global Talent Management 
GP Strategies Corporation 

Maja Tokic 
Project Designer – Moseley Architects

Lea White Young 
Director of Sales & Business Development 
Better Business Bureau 

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