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About the Zoo

The Houston Zoo has over 6,000 permanent residents (our animals) for whom we provide housing, meals, medical care, and even education! Each year over two million guests 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 well being of our residents and guests.

Our Mission

Connect communities with animals, inspiring action to save wildlife.

Our Vision

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.


Board of Directors

Roxanne Almaraz
E. William Barnett (Director Emeritus)
Joe Cleary
Roberto Contreras
Josh Davidson
Joseph Dilg
Jeff Dudderar
Anne Duncan (Director Emeritus)
Bob Edwards
Jenny Elkins
Kat Gallagher
Dr. Amy C. Garrou
Dr. Cullen K. Geiselman
Marty Goossen
Robert Graham
Gillian A. Hobson
Tandra Jackson
Jill Jewett
Myrtle Jones
Peggy Kostial
Neal Manne
Kimberly McKay
Stacy Methvin (Chair)
Clay Neff
Suzanne Nimocks (Immediate Past Chair)
Jim Postl
Tim Roberts
Brent Smolik
Bas Solleveld
Macey Reasoner Stokes
Molly Voorhees
Cynthia Walker
Randa Duncan Williams
Austin Young

Contacting the Houston Zoo

Main Phone: 713-533-6500

Contact Us Online

  • Lee Ehmke, Chief Executive Officer
  • Sheryl Kolasinski, Chief Operating Officer
  • John Trahan, Chief Financial Officer
  • Lisa Marie Avendano, Vice President, Animal Operations
  • Nick Espinosa, Vice President, Development
  • Kristin Finney, Vice President, Human Resources
  • Leslie Forestier, Vice President, Finance
  • Trazanna Moreno,Vice President, Marketing and Communications
  • Peter Riger, Vice President, Conservation and Education