Service as an accreditation inspector is a huge responsibility and requires a tremendous amount of work. Inspectors are a critical part of the accreditation process. AZA, and every institution it has accredited, relies on inspectors to do a thorough job and make an unbiased evaluation based upon accreditation standards and modern zoological practices and philosophies.
In addition to having professional expertise and sufficient experience, inspectors must be willing to follow instructions, study hard in advance, allow sufficient time and have sufficient patience to inspect, be capable of making tough decisions if necessary, remain impartial, and maintain complete confidentiality. The report and recommendations each team provides to the Accreditation Commission are an integral part of the process, and the list of concerns that each team generates provides an institution with a clear outline of items that must be successfully addressed before accreditation can be considered.
While the inspectors themselves do not determine whether an institution is ultimately accredited or not (that is the decision of the Accreditation Commission), inspectors serve as the "eyes and ears" of the Commission, and create a guide for professional improvement. AZA is grateful to all the experts who participate in this important process! Please visit the profiles of our Accreditation Inspectors of the Year.
Visiting Committee Members may download the Inspector's Handbook (PDF) or contact the AZA office at 301-562-0777 to receive a copy.
The Inspector's Application Form may be submitted in either hard copy or electronic format. To submit the application via mail or fax, please click here. To submit the application electronically via email, please click here.
Each year, many professional colleagues volunteer their time to assist the Accreditation Commission by conducting accreditation inspections and certification inspections. Although the COVID-19 pandemic has temporarily and dramatically altered where and how we work, there are foundational elements of our accreditation program that we cannot change without compromising the integrity of our process. On-site inspections are one of these cornerstones. Without the willingness and dedication of our volunteer inspectors, this aspect of our program would not have been able to move forward during these trying times. We owe a special level of gratitude to those brave individuals who have selflessly participated in on-site inspections in order to keep our accreditation program moving forward despite the increased risks associated with the pandemic this past year.
Senior Vice President, Accreditation Programs
Director, Accreditation Programs
Accreditation Programs Coordinator