president + ceo
Named President + CEO in June 2017, Crystal R. Bowyer led National Children’s Museum to its historic reopening in downtown DC in February 2020. In this role, Bowyer oversaw all aspects of the Museum’s redevelopment and planning. Bowyer has dedicated her career to serving children with nearly 20 years of experience in government and nonprofit administration. She came to National Children’s Museum from the Museum of Science and Industry (MSI) in Chicago, the largest science and technology center in the western hemisphere. At MSI, Bowyer managed individual philanthropy and membership during the $380 million capital campaign, as well as supported board development and strategic planning for the organization. Previously, Bowyer held leadership roles for the Chicago Children’s Choir and the Boys & Girls Town of Missouri, where she was awarded the Employee of the Year Award for Outstanding Innovation.
A Missouri native, Bowyer received her Bachelor of Science from the University of Missouri and a Master of Nonprofit Administration from University of Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business, earning the Dean Woo Fellowship for Leadership. She is a member of the Board of Trustees for the Association of Children’s Museums, and she has served as adjunct faculty at North Park University. Bowyer also previously served on the boards of The Cradle Adoption Agency and The Driskill Foundation. In 2020, she was named “40 Under 40” by the Washington Business Journal, and she was appointed to the Coalition for Women’s Appointments in Arts and Humanities for the Biden-Harris Administration. Her work has taken her around the world in service to children, and she has been featured as a business leader in The Chicago Sun-Times, Crain’s Chicago Business, Modern Luxury DC, Washington Life Magazine, Northern Virginia Magazine, NBC Chicago, and WJLA. Bowyer resides in Washington, DC with her husband, eight year old son, and one year old daughter.