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About the Zoo

The Houston Zoo is made up of many moving parts. We have over 6,000 permanent residents (our animals) for whom we provide housing, meals, medical care and, yes, even education! There are over 2 million guests each year who come to experience our incredible variety of animals and ecosystems, as well as attend special private and public events and entertainment. Our dedicated staff works around the clock to ensure that the Zoo is always running smoothly for the safety and well being of our residents and guests.


Our Mission

Houston Zoo connects communities with animals, inspiring action to save wildlife.

Our Vision

Houston Zoo will be a leader in the global movement to save wildlife.

Guiding Principles

  • Be a Zoo for all.
  • Provide exemplary animal care, assuring outstanding animal welfare.
  • Provide engaging animal experiences.
  • Deliver a smart, fun, inspiring guest experience.
  • Be the leading environmental education resource in Texas.
  • Inspire broad community support and collaborations.
  • Change behaviors to help protect wildlife.
  • Create a workplace culture that embodies respect, empowerment, teamwork, and personal development.
  • Employ best business practices and sound financial management.
  • Ensure safety for guests, staff and the animals in our care.
  • Operate sustainably; set an example for others.

Information for Donors

Privacy Policy

IRS Form 990

2016 Financial Statements

2016 Annual Report

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Board of Directors

Roxanne Almaraz
Philip Bahr
E. William Barnett (Director Emeritus)
Monica Benton
Joe Cleary
Roberto Contreras
Josh Davidson
Joseph Dilg
Jeff Dudderar
Anne Duncan (Director Emeritus)
Robert (Bob) Edwards
Jenny Elkins
Kathleen “Kat” Gallagher
Dr. Amy C. Garrou
Dr. Cullen Geiselman
Marty Goossen
Robert Graham
Winell Herron
Gillian Hobson
Tandra Jackson
Jill Jewett
Myrtle Jones
Peggy Kostial
Neal Manne
Stacy Methvin (Chair)
Bruce Niemeyer
Suzanne Nimocks (Immediate Past Chair)
Jim Postl
Tim Roberts
Brent Smolik
Bas Solleveld
Macey Stokes
Stephen Trauber
Molly Voorhees
Randa Duncan Williams
Austin Young

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Contacting the Houston Zoo

Main Phone: 713-533-6500

Contact Us Via Email

  • Lee Ehmke, Chief Executive Officer
  • Rauli Garcia, Chief Administrative Officer
  • Sheryl Kolasinski, Chief Operating Officer
  • Leslie Forestier, Chief Financial Officer
  • Lisa Marie Avendano, Vice President of Animal Operations
  • Peter Riger, Vice President of Wildlife Conservation
  • Nick Espinosa, Vice President of Development
  • Kristin Finney, Vice President of Human Resources