Nominating Committee

The Nominating Committee is responsible for identifying and nominating candidates to serve on the AZA Board of Directors and the Ethics Board.

How Does the Nominations Committee Process of AZA Work? 

The Chair-Elect of the Board of Directors appoints a Nominating Committee, with terms of three years. The Chair-Elect typically makes new appointments in October or November. The Immediate Past Chair serves as the Chair of the Nominating Committee. Currently, there are nine members of the Nominating Committee, all of whom must all have been professional fellow members in good standing for five years or more. 

The primary role and function of the Nominating Committee is to select candidates for the Board of Directors and the Ethics Board. It is important to note that members of the Committee are not themselves eligible to be nominated as a candidate for the Board of Directors or the Ethics Board.

AZA staff provide the Nominating Committee with lists of eligible candidates to serve on the Board of Directors and Ethics Board. The Nominating Committee reviews this information, typically in November, December, and January, taking into consideration who is rolling off of these boards. For the Ethics Board, the Nominating Committee identifies six candidates for three vacancies, nominating two aquarium candidates and four zoo candidates. For the Board of Directors, the Nominating Committee nominates three candidates for three Board vacancies, two from zoos and one from an aquarium. To be eligible to stand for election a candidate must have been a professional fellow for three years.

In making its selections, the Nominating Committee considers diversity in the broadest sense, including size of facility, geography, professional background, race, gender, and other factors that will ensure a diverse, representative Ethics Board and Board of Directors. The Nominating Committee also considers how active potential candidates are in the AZA community and whether they have expressed interest in serving in one or both of these roles. We believe a diverse and highly qualified Board of Directors and Ethics Board are crucial to the success of our profession.

Once selections are made, the suggested nominees are contacted to determine if they are willing and able to serve in the positions to which they were proposed to be nominated.

Once a confirmed slate of candidates is established, AZA staff prepare a ballot for election, which is typically sent to those eligible to vote, professional fellows, in April.

If you are interested in serving on the AZA Ethics Board or Board of Directors, we encourage you to reach out to members of the Nominating Committee. For more information about the process, please contact Craig Hoover, AZA Executive Vice President, at


Brian Davis, Georgia Aquarium

Susan Altrui, Little Rock Zoo
Cynthia Claus, Jenkinson's Aquarium
Dolf DeJong, Toronto Zoo
Michael Fatzinger, North Carolina Aquarium at Fort Fisher
Craig Jacobs, Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium
Jo-Elle Mogerman, Saint Louis Zoo
John Racanelli, National Aquarium
Keith Winsten, Brevard Zoo

Staff Liaison
Dan Ashe
Craig Hoover

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