KidZone Museum Board of Directors at AskEvent Fundraiser 2023


Mike Petersen is board chair. He grew up in Wisconsin and moved to California to obtain an economics degree from UCLA. Mike worked full-time in school, eventually managing IT support teams for the UCLA School of Medicine and Life Sciences departments. He then moved to the Bay Area to work for Apple for 13 years and then Google for 2 years. During his time at Apple, he obtained his MBA from Pepperdine with a specialization in Technology Management. Mike got his start in philanthropy during those years, donating to and volunteering for the Tech Museum in San Jose. He married Courtenay in 2016 and built their forever home in Truckee. Mike and Courtenay enjoy playing at the museum with their two young children Finn and Piper. Mike is an instrument-rated private pilot and enjoys the outdoors, especially skiing, soccer, boating and fishing. He is passionate about providing STEAM learning opportunities for young kids and honored to help create these programs for the Museum. Mike and Courtenay are Museum Visionary Circle Members.

Maria Snideman is the board secretary and on the Exhibits Committee. Her personal and professional focus has always been to support the healthy lives of children through education and play. After moving to Tahoe over 20 years ago and starting a family, Maria crafted school readiness programs for First 5 CA and volunteered to coordinate and create exhibits for the KidZone. Maria is an active member of the North Tahoe chapter of the AAUW and recruits, interviews and recommends middle school girls for Tech Trek  camps. Maria received her Bachelor’s degree from the University of Vermont and her Masters in Early Childhood Development and Developmental Psychology from Boston College. She studied Educational Therapy at UC Berkeley and earned her teaching credential at Dominican College. Maria taught in public and private schools grades K-5 and was a school Counselor for children ages 4-14 in the Bay Area while also managing her own private tutoring and educational therapy practice for children with learning disabilities. Maria joined the board to support children in our community so that they have access to innovative play that helps them reach their developmental milestones.

Joan Zappettini is the board treasurer. She moved to Truckee in 2014 to serve as the Director of Human Resources for the Tahoe Truckee Unified School District (TTUSD). She has a teaching credential and a masters in educational leadership and has been a school principal and teacher for many years prior to her role at TTUSD. Joan wants to ensure that our collaborative partnership with the school district stays strong and that our education strategies inspire a life-long love of learning for our children. Joan is the Museum representative on the Truckee Tahoe Airshow & Family Festival Planning Committee. Joan is a Museum Visionary Circle Member.

Leanna Jacuzzi is the governance chair and has been a full-time resident of Truckee for nearly 30 years. She worked for Tahoe Forest Hospital as a clinical dietitian for 20 years, specializing in diabetes for the last five years. She currently teaches nutrition at Sierra College. The KidZone Museum was an invaluable resource for Leanna and her children growing up. Leanna is excited to be a part of the planning process for the future of the Museum.


Chris Arth, MD, has dedicated 45 years to pediatric practice in Truckee. His wife, Christine (Chris), a seasoned early childhood educator, continues to delight children with puppet shows at KidZone Museum. Chris served as Chief of Staff at Tahoe Forest Hospital three times and was a member of the Executive Committee for a decade. He’s also been active on the Glenshire Homeowners Board. With a keen interest in preventative health, vaccines, and mental wellness, he’s passionate about organizations like KidZone Museum that foster creative free play and provide a safe, enriching environment for children. He is part of the Campaign Committee to ensure the museum is here for future generations of children.

Christina Baker, a member of the Campaign Committee, has a deep passion for child development. Her journey began at the Children’s Museum of Denver, where she served as an educator, overseeing the outdoor education exhibit and program. With a degree in Elementary Education from Wheaton College, she later became a teacher at the Logan School for Creative Learning in Denver. After the birth of her daughter, she founded a tutoring company before relocating to Truckee. Now, Christina is thrilled to contribute to the vital mission of fostering creative play for children in the Tahoe-Truckee community.

Stephani McGarry’s journey with the KidZone Museum is deeply personal, as she and her husband, Michael, raised their two children, Paige and Declan, in Truckee, where frequent visits to KidZone Museum during their formative years became a cornerstone of joy, exploration, learning, and friendship. With her prior non-profit board experience and over 25 years of diverse management experience, she brings a wealth of expertise to the board and museum strategic goals. Currently serving as the Chief Engagement Officer at SIG, Stephani oversees strategic direction, financial management, content curation, and daily operations involved in managing SIG’s events. She joined the board to support the hands-on learning experiences that support our children’s health and wellbeing. With her work on the fundraising team, she aims to build museum capacity so the museum is prepared to move to a larger facility, and serve a larger audience with innovative and dynamic interactive experiences.

Meagan Millar is on the Museum Engagement Committee and chair of the Table Captain Team. She moved to Tahoe from New Hampshire after graduating with a BA from St. Lawrence University in the fall of 2004.  She came for the skiing, but soon fell in love with the Northern California climate, recreation, and people, including her now husband, Jon. They have three children, Liam, Ryan and Delaney. As a new mom, the museum was an important resource for Meg to connect with other families in the area. As a board member she intends to sustain and expand this resource to reach more families and kids in the North Tahoe-Truckee region.

Suzanne Montgomery moved to Truckee in 2013 with her husband and two college-age children. Born and raised on the San Francisco peninsula, she ventured to Southern California to pursue a degree in drama from UC Irvine. As a philanthropist with a passion for community service, she has held several officer positions on various nonprofit boards and looks forward to helping the KidZone Museum reach its full potential in the Truckee/Tahoe community. Suzanne is a member of the Museum Exhibits Committee and is chair of the Campaign Planning Committee. She and her husband, Scott, are Museum Visionary Circle Members.

Larissa Swalander is the chair of the Museum Engagement Committee. She has lived in Truckee for over three decades with her two children and husband. She is a wealth management banker at the local branch of US Bank. Her experience in the financial industry started in 2016 and she became a Wealth Management Banker in 2019. Larissa was on the KidZone Museum board when the museum was founded. Now that her kids are older, she came back to make sure the museum her children loved so much is here for future generations.

Shana Wapstra Scott is chair of the campaign committee. She is a licensed marriage and family therapist and has extensive experience with youth programs. Shana moved to Truckee with her husband Eric in 2000. They have three kids, ages 14 to 20. The KidZone Museum played a vital role in their growth and development, offering a place for playful discovery and community connection. As a board member, Shana is excited to be in the position to help the Museum thrive and reach other families in the Truckee-Tahoe region. Shana and Eric are Museum Visionary Circle Members.