Mike is a graduate of the Exotic Animal Training and Management program at Moorpark College. After his graduation in 2001, he earned a part-time position at the Los Angeles Zoo caring for black bears, a spectacled bear, and the black rhino. In addition to working at the Zoo, he also worked full time as a veterinarian technician at a small animal clinic, until becoming a full-time keeper of giraffes at the Zoo in 2005. While Mike has worked with a wide variety of animals at the L.A. Zoo, his passion for giraffes moved him toward the position of lead giraffe keeper in 2011. He has also worked on projects for the Giraffe Conservation Foundation in Kenya, has attended several giraffe related conferences and workshops throughout the country, and has headed up many fundraisers in support of Giraffe conservation. Mike is also the current president of the Los Angeles chapter of the American Association of Zoo Keepers. AAZK/LA has been responsible for raising thousands of dollars for wildlife conservation worldwide and has hosted the most successful Bowling for Rhinos event in the country over the last seven years, an event that, to date, has raised over $270,000 for rhino conservation in Africa and Southeast Asia.