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Association of Zoos and Aquariums

Program Assistant, Animal Programs

General Statement of Position

Under general supervision, performs various duties in support of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ (AZA’s) Conservation, Management, & Welfare Sciences (CMWS) department.  Responsibilities include: maintaining departmental databases; preparing and editing reports; maintaining accurate records and webpages related to the department’s work; providing excellent member services and support to AZA Committees, Animal Programs, institutional collection planners, AZA members and partners, and the general public; and completing other duties as needed. Works closely with the Animal Population Management, Aquatic Collections Sustainability, and Animal Welfare Committees, Scientific Advisory Groups, and other working groups or task forces as needed. This position reports to the AZA Director of Population Management Strategy and is based in Silver Spring, Maryland.

*Please note that all individuals hired by AZA must present documentation of FDA approved COVID vaccination.


Essential Position Functions

  • Manage AZA’s Animal Program Database, including updating Animal Program related data, maintaining current lists of Animal Program Officers and participants, such as Institutional Liaisons, Institutional Representatives, and Advisors, including advertising and tracking Program Leader vacancies.

  • Monitor Animal Program Leader accountability, including processing extension requests and vetting and posting Animal Program documents to the departmental databases and AZA website.

  • Provide administrative support to the CMWS Department and related Committees, working groups, and task forces including proofing documents and presentations, composing and distributing meeting minutes, drafting and distributing formal letters or emails, and scheduling meetings.

  • Compose and publish the monthly Animal Programs Update; relay pertinent information to Animal Program participants via emails and the AZA Network groups.

  • Work closely with the AZA Population Management Center to track roles and access for Animal Program participants and researchers in ZIMS for Studbooks.

  • Answer general inquiries related to AZA’s Animal Programs.

  • Maintain SOPs for the department’s databases and processes.

  • Attend the AZA Mid-Year Meeting and Annual Conference and present programmatic updates and changes at the Program Leader meetings; act as a resource for Animal Program participants during conferences.

  • Process Dedicated Fund requests, and keep resources and webpages current.

  • Assist departmental staff with special projects and clerical duties.

  • Perform other duties as requested.


Required Qualifications:

Education and Work Experience

  • Bachelor’s degree and/or background in animal science, biology, environmental science, zoology, or other related field

  • Previous experience with zoos and aquariums is a plus

Skills and Knowledge

  • Strong organizational skills with the ability to multi-task, prioritize projects, and coordinate with others to provide deliverables on an agreed upon deadline

  • Ability to think critically and demonstrated time-management skills

  • Strong written and verbal communication skills; ability to convey scientific information clearly and concisely; effectively edit and proofread work

  • Strong computer literacy; experience with database management, Microsoft suite, internet resources, and experience with online databases a plus

  • Ability to work independently and efficiently

  • Professional, positive, and enthusiastic demeanor

About AZA:

Founded in 1924, and located in Silver Spring, MD, the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of zoos and aquariums in the areas of conservation, education, science, and recreation. AZA is the independent accrediting organization for the best zoos and the best aquariums in America and the world, assuring the public that when they visit an AZA-accredited facility, it meets the highest standards for animal care and welfare. The Association represents more than 240 facilities in the United States and overseas, facilitates cooperative animal care and conservation programs, and is dedicated to providing members with the resources they need to be the best in this profession (


AZA offers a positive work environment conducive to gaining beneficial career and networking experience. 




Starting salary is $41,200.

How to Apply

To apply, please submit your resume and cover letter to Deadline to apply is 7/22/22.

Association of Zoos and Aquariums
Silver Spring, MD

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