L.A. Zoo Director John Lewis Elected to AZA’s Prestigious Board of Directors

CONTACT: L.A. Zoo Press

September 29, 2015

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

LOS ANGELES ZOO DIRECTOR JOHN LEWIS ELECTED TO ASSOCIATION OF ZOOS AND AQUARIUM’S PRESTIGIOUS BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Gardens Director John Lewis

Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Gardens Director John Lewis

The membership of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) has elected John Lewis, Director of the Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Gardens, to the AZA Board of Directors.

“John’s strong leadership and extensive experience will benefit AZA-accredited aquariums and zoos as we continue our commitment to protecting wildlife and engaging visitors to join us in these initiatives,” said AZA President and CEO Jim Maddy.

Beginning October 1, 2015, Lewis will serve on the AZA Board of Directors as one of its thirteen members. Lewis will be involved in every aspect of the national organization, including accreditation, ethics, animal welfare, and conservation. Each year, AZA’s 230 accredited facilities collectively contribute $160 million to field conservation projects that help to protect species across the world, serve more than 183 million visitors, welcome more than 12 million students on educational field trips, contribute $17.4 billion to the U.S. economy, and support 176,000 jobs.

Lewis began his career in animal care as a zoo keeper and curator and has spent the last 29 years in executive management as director of two AZA-accredited facilities, John Ball Zoological Gardens in Grand Rapids, Michigan for 17 years and Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Gardens since 2003. During his career, he has also served on a variety of AZA Committees, including the Wildlife Conservation and Management Committee (WCMC), Accreditation Commission, Ethics Board, Charter & Bylaws Committee, and several task forces. This is his second time serving on the AZA Board of Directors, and he is pleased to bring perspective from the past to seek and assess opportunities for the future.

“I am excited and humbled by the opportunity to serve on the Board,” said John Lewis. “Like the L.A. Zoo, AZA is a place where people make a positive difference for wildlife every day.”

About the Los Angeles Zoo
Accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), the landmark Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Gardens, drawing 1.6 million visitors each year, is home to a diverse collection of 1,100 animals representing 250 different species, many of which are rare or endangered. Its lush grounds on 113 acres feature a botanical collection comprising over 800 different plant species with approximately 7,000 individual plants. The Zoo is located in Griffith Park at the junction of the Ventura (134) and Golden State (5) freeways. Admission is $20 for adults and $15 for children ages 2 to 12. The Zoo is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. For information, call (323) 644-4200 or visit the L.A. Zoo Web site at www.lazoo.org.

About AZA
Founded in 1924, the Association of Zoos and Aquariums is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the advancement of zoos and aquariums in the areas of conservation, animal welfare, education, science, and recreation. AZA is the accrediting body for the top zoos and aquariums in the United States and seven other countries. Look for the AZA accreditation logo whenever you visit a zoo or aquarium as your assurance that you are supporting a facility dedicated to providing excellent care for animals, a great experience for you, and a better future for all living things. The AZA is a leader in saving species and your link to helping animals all over the world. To learn more, visit www.aza.org.

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