Joel Bartsch

HMNS Doubles Attendance, Thanks to the Leadership

For more than 15 years, Joel A. Bartsch has served as the president of CEO of the Houston Museum of Natural Science (HMNS). In this capacity, he is responsible for coordinating the creation of immersive exhibitions for guests, managing the museum’s growing membership, and developing educational programming. Moreover, Joel A. Bartsch oversees the institution’s philanthropic initiatives and promotes volunteer opportunities throughout Greater Houston.

During his tenure as the president and CEO of HMNS, Mr. Bartsch has prompted significant growth. When he began, annual attendance at the museum was around 1,300,000. He has almost doubled this number to 2.5 million annual attendees and increased the museum’s annual earned income from under $15 million to nearly $40 million, thanks to his restructuring efforts.

With a specific focus on facility renovations and the creation of engaging and educational programs and exhibits, Joel Bartsch has twice expanded the museum’s operating space. In 2012, he oversaw the addition of over 200,000 square feet that the museum uses for public exhibitions and educational support. Another expansion in 2017 saw HMNS add its interactive energy science education center.

Houston, TX, US

Work Experience

Jan 1, 2004 - Present

Houston Museum of Natural Science  

Jan 1, 1991 - Jan 1, 2004

Curator & Director of Earth Sciences/ Project Manager
Houston Museum of Natural Science  

Jan 1, 1988 - Jan 1, 1991

Director & Curator
California State Mining & Mineral Museum  


Jan 1, 2003

Rice University 
History/History of Science 

Jan 1, 1986

Concordia University 
Seminary Studies