Webinars

Upcoming Webinars

Stay tuned for upcoming webinars.

Past Webinars

Animal Management, Health & Welfare

Population Management II Webinar Series: Thinking Outside the Box - Non-traditional Population Management

One size does not fit all when it comes to managing a diverse array of SSP Programs! In our webinar, we will be sharing some non-traditional management strategies used by SSP Programs that address unique challenges or support specific Program goals. This is the last of the PMII webinar series!

Speakers:
Paul Senner, MS, Population Biologist – AZA PMC
Asako Navarro, MS, Population Biologist - San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance
Rachel Bladow, MS, Population Biologist – AZA PMC
Steve Reichling, PhD, Director of Conservation & Research - Memphis Zoo
Kate Rodriguez-Clark, PhD, Population Ecologist - Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute

Date/Time: Friday, November 19, 12-1:30 PM EDT 

View Recording

 

Ambassador Animal Department Structures

This webinar will showcase four different presentations on the variety of ways facilities structure their ambassador animal departments. Presenters will share the pros and cons of their structure and give participants the opportunity to ask questions. Join us for this interactive presentation!

Speakers:
Rebecca Young, Associate Curator, Ambassador Animals - Zoo Atlanta
Stephani Reynolds, Director of Education - Kansas City Zoo
Christina Dembiec, Director of Education - Memphis Zoo
Holly Houser, Animal Ambassadors Coordinator - Denver Zoo

Date/Time: Wednesday, September 1, 2-3 PM EDT 

View Recording

 

Population Management II Webinar Series: Communication Part 2, Get Organized for SSP Planning and Discover Helpful Tools for Virtual Planning Meetings

In this webinar, Population Biologists and Program Leaders will show you the tools they use to ensure SSP planning meetings run smoothly and efficiently. You will learn how to organize interim emails and your institutional wants and needs surveys for a planning meeting. We will also demonstrate how to use virtual bulletin boards as a visual tool to organize and share breeding and transfer ideas before and during the planning meeting.

Speakers:
Andrea Putnam, PhD, Population Biologist - San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance
Amanda Lawless, MS, Population Biologist – AZA PMC
Harrison Edell, MS, Executive Vice President, Animal Care & Conservation - Dallas Zoo
Joanna Klass, Animal Keeper, Woodland Park Zoo

Date/Time: Thursday, July 22, 1-2:30 PM EDT 

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Population Management II Webinar Series: Communication Part 1, Managing Animal Programs - Communication and Networking are Key to Success

In this webinar we will discuss tips and tricks that are key to effective communication and networking for program leaders. You will learn why communication is key to successfully managing your program (and your career) and where to find relevant resources to keep communication flowing.  We will also cover the frequency of communication and how to initiate and enhance your network.

Speakers:
Denise McClean, Director – Prospect Park Zoo
Karen Bauman, Manager of Reproductive Sciences – Saint Louis Zoo
Kristine Schad, Director, Population Management Center - AZA Population Management Center at Lincoln Park Zoo

Date/Time: Wednesday, June 23, 12-1:30 PM EDT 

View Recording

 

Concepts and Hot Topics in Animal Welfare for Ambassador Animal Programs

Join us for the third installment of our webinar series presented by the Principles of Ambassador Animal Management course team. This session will cover the conceptual background of animal welfare based on the animal welfare science literature. Major themes in animal welfare, such as choice and control, will be discussed in the context of animal management in zoos & aquariums, including for ambassador animal programs. Participants will be able to develop a basic understanding of the field of animal welfare and an appreciation for its complexity as a topic.

Speakers: David Powell, PhD, Director of Research and Director, AZA Reproductive Management Center - Saint Louis Zoo

Date/Time: Monday June 14, 2-3:30 PM EDT 

View Recording

 

Population Management During the COVID-19 Crisis

This webinar, developed by the AZA Animal Population Management (APM) Committee, focuses on the current challenges that our cooperatively managed breeding programs are facing as a result of this public health crisis. The panelists will discuss various management strategies, priorities, and options that our zoos and aquariums may implement during this time. Program Leaders will hear ideas on how to keep managing their animal populations during the current budget, staffing, and transport limitations.
Moderator: Stacey Johnson, Corporate Director of Conservation & Research - San Diego Zoo Global

Presenters & Speakers:
Lori Perkins, Deputy Director - Birmingham Zoo
Joe Barkowski, Vice President of Animal Conservation & Science - Tulsa Zoo
Kristine Schad Eebes, Director - AZA Population Management Center
Drew Foster, Animal Curator - Phoenix Zoo
Barrett Christie, Director of Animal Husbandry - Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk
Mandi Schook, Science Operations Director - Disney's Animal Kingdom
Colleen Lynch, Curator of Birds - Riverbanks Zoo & Garden

Date/Time: Friday, June 12, 12-1:30 PM EDT 

View Recording

 

Population Management II Webinar Series: My SSP Needs Help! Introduction to interim breeding and transfer recommendations for population management - Part 2

It’s been a rough year and, on top of everything else, COVID added new challenges to the already challenging job of managing your SSP, but you still have time before your next planning meeting. What do you do? Don’t panic! In this two-part webinar series population biologists discuss interim population planning in this changing world.
In Part 2, we will take a deeper dive looking at how these tools and resources have been applied to real world interim planning examples and we will allow time for you to bring your questions to a panel of experts.

Speakers:
Paul Senner, Associate Population Biologist - PMC
Amanda Lawless, Population Biologist, PMC
John Andrews, Population Biologist - PMC
Andrea Putnam, Population Biologist - San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance
Asako Navarro, Population Biologist - San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance
Karen Bauman, Manager of Reproductive Sciences - Saint Louis Zoo

Date/Time: Wednesday, May 26, 1-2:30 PM EDT 

View Recording

 

Population Management II Webinar Series: My SSP Needs Help! Introduction to interim breeding and transfer recommendations for population management - Part I

It’s been a rough year and, on top of everything else, COVID added new challenges to the already challenging job of managing your SSP, but you still have time before your next planning meeting. What do you do? Don’t panic! In this two-part webinar series population biologists discuss interim population planning in this changing world.
In Part 1, we introduce population management tools and resources, provide examples of when you may need interim analyses and answer some of your questions about interim population planning.

Speakers:
Paul Senner, Associate Population Biologist - PMC
Amanda Lawless, Population Biologist, PMC
John Andrews, Population Biologist - PMC
Andrea Putnam, Population Biologist - San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance
Asako Navarro, Population Biologist - San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance
Karen Bauman, Manager of Reproductive Sciences - Saint Louis Zoo

Date/Time: Wednesday, April 28, 12-1:30 PM EDT 

View Recording

 

Ambassador Animal Handling Training with Staff and Volunteers

Training staff and volunteers to properly handle ambassador animals is a task that comes with great responsibility. This meeting, which covers a topic directly from the Principles of Ambassador Animal Management AZA course, will focus on approaches to the handling training process and evaluation of that process, how handling training may differ between staff and volunteers, methods for annual recertification of handlers, considerations for who is qualified to be a handling trainer, and different ways that relationship building with animals and honing of trained handling skills are encouraged/facilitated after certification has taken place.

This session is designed for speakers and participants to engage in discussion, so please come willing to share and ask questions!

Speakers:
Debra Swank, Training and Trends Coordinator - Akron Zoo
Cherlyn Vatalaro, Director of Conservation Education - Lehigh Valley Zoo
Rebecca Young, MSc, CIG, Associate Curator, Ambassador Animals - Zoo Atlanta

Date/Time: Wednesday, March 31, 2-3:30 PM EST 

View Recording

 

Ambassador Animal Welfare and Best Practices

This webinar will focus on strategies for improving animal ambassador welfare with a focus on habitats, training and presentations. The Principles of Animal Ambassador Management (PAAM) in conjunction with the Animal Ambassador Scientific Advisory Group (AASAG) continue to work with animal ambassador managers and wildlife care specialists to raise the bar for animal ambassadors in AZA facilities.

Facilitated by Nicki Boyd CIG, CPAT-KA, Associate Curator of Behavioral Husbandry and Ambassadors - San Diego Zoo

Date/Time: Wednesday, February 17, 2-3 PM EST 

View Recording

COVID-19

Supporting Schools Through COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has permanently altered the Pre-K-12 school landscape and the ways in which schools engage with zoo and aquariums. Now more than ever, teachers, caregivers, and students are turning towards trusted cultural organizations as sources for engaging and accurate science education curriculum and programming. In this 90-minute webinar, we will hear from four AZA zoos and aquariums who quickly mobilized and reimagined their educational programming to meet the academic and emotional needs of students and teachers across the country.

Moderator: Elise Bernardoni; Assistant Director of Education, Friends of the National Zoo

Speakers:
Alicia Archer, Education Programs Manager - Aquarium of the Pacific
Andrea Stein, Manager of School Programs - Roger Williams Park Zoo
Jasmine Smith-Gillen, School Programs Specialist - Roger Williams Park Zoo
Theresa Wilson, Education Specialist - ZooAmerica North American Wildlife Park
Tiffany Evans, Educator - St. Louis Zoo

Date/Time: Tuesday, January 26, 12-1:30 PM EST 

View Recording 

 

Live From Our Couches, it's Zoo Education!

2020 is the year that redefined the educator's mantra "meet your audience where they are." From our homes, our yards, behind masks, and 6 feet away, AZA teams have reimagined programs to continue engaging and educating our audiences during a global pandemic. In this 90-minute webinar, we will explore existing programs that underwent a complete transformation or new programs that grew out of the challenges of digital or socially-distanced learning.

Moderator: Elise Bernardoni; Assistant Director of Education, Friends of the National Zoo

Speakers:
Kimberly Coons; Director of Education and Volunteer Services, Rosamond Gifford Zoo
Jessi Parra; Education Programs Specialist/Assistant Camp Director, Friends of the National Zoo
Rosalío Rubio; School Programs Coordinator/Zoo Curator of Education II, Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Gardens
Eric Turner; Volunteer Engagement Supervisor, Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens

Date/Time: Friday, December 11, 3-4:30 PM EST 

View Recording

 

Impact of COVID-19 on Attitudes toward Animals: Framing Effective Messages

How has our collective human experience with COVID-19 affected people’s attitudes toward animals and nature? As we begin to reunite with our guests in-person (and continue to connect with global audiences through our online programming), zoo and aquarium educators need to re-frame messages around the basics: the interdependence of people and wildlife, importance of connection to nature, and the value of science. 
Join us for this first in a series of webinars in partnership with AZA's Conservation Education Committee designed to build a community of practice as we discuss the opportunities and challenges of interpreting conservation during this tumultuous time. We will explore framing effective messages both internally for volunteers, staff and Board members and for our guests, social media audiences, our donors and our community.
 
Presenters:
Julie Henry, President, Finish Line Leadership
Terry O’Connor, Principal Consultant, Terry O’Connor Consulting LLC
Nette Pletcher, Founder, Beez Kneez Creative 

Date/Time: Tuesday, August 11, 1-2:30 PM EDT 

View Recording

 

Building Resiliency in Our People

This pandemic and current social climate poses daily opportunities to improve how we guide and support our staff and volunteers as individuals and teams. Join this webinar, led by the AZA Human Resources Committee to hear colleagues discuss their experiences, including challenges and solutions they’ve realized along the way. Join us for insights, lessons learned, and ideas for supporting our people in our ever-changing environment.

Moderator: Laura Martina, Chief People Officer - Fresno Chaffee Zoo
Speakers:
Tammy Burnett, VP Organizational Development - Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden
Melissa Dude, Volunteer Program Manager - The Florida Aquarium
Mara-Lynne Payne, Senior Manager of Diversity & Inclusion - Tennessee Aquarium
Charlisa Shelly, Director of Human Resources - Kansas City Zoo
Jeff Vanek, Director of Human Resources - Utah's Hogle Zoo
Christie Vondrak, Chief Administrative Officer - Riverbanks Zoo & Gardens

Date/Time: Friday, July 10, 2-3:30 PM EDT 

View Recording

 

What Have We Learned Since Re-Opening?

Join this session presented by the AZA Business Operations Committee to learn from peers what facilities have learned during their re-opening including: How to determine capacity & ticketing; Staff & Guest Safety; Sanitation; Social Distancing; In Zoo Communication - Signage & other methods; and Concessions (Retail, Food Service, Animal Encounters, rides).
Moderator: Andrea Froehle, VP of Marketing & Communications - Event Network
Speakers:
Doug Lund, Sr. VP & COO - Utah's Hogle Zoo
Rachel Summers, COO - Blank Park Zoo
Eric Donovan, Director of Operations - Elmwood Park Zoo
Greg Charbeneau, VP/GM - OdySea Aquarium

Date/Time: Wednesday, June 24, 2-3:30 PM EDT 

View Recording

 

Population Management During the COVID-19 Crisis

This webinar, developed by the AZA Animal Population Management (APM) Committee, focuses on the current challenges that our cooperatively managed breeding programs are facing as a result of this public health crisis. The panelists will discuss various management strategies, priorities, and options that our zoos and aquariums may implement during this time. Program Leaders will hear ideas on how to keep managing their animal populations during the current budget, staffing, and transport limitations.
Moderator: Stacey Johnson, Corporate Director of Conservation & Research - San Diego Zoo Global
Presenters & Speakers:
Lori Perkins, Deputy Director - Birmingham Zoo
Joe Barkowski, Vice President of Animal Conservation & Science - Tulsa Zoo
Kristine Schad Eebes, Director - AZA Population Management Center
Drew Foster, Animal Curator - Phoenix Zoo
Barrett Christie, Director of Animal Husbandry - Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk
Mandi Schook, Science Operations Director - Disney's Animal Kingdom
Colleen Lynch, Curator of Birds - Riverbanks Zoo & Garden

Date/Time: Friday, June 12, 12-1:30 PM EDT 

View Recording

 

Preparing for Re-Opening Operations

Join this session presented by the AZA Business Operations Committee to learn from peers how to tackle the big re-opening questions including: How to determine capacity & ticketing; Staff & Guest Safety; Sanitation; Social Distancing; In Zoo Communication - Signage & other methods; and Concessions (Retail, Food Service, Animal Encounters, rides).
Moderator: Sean Greene, COO/Exec. VP of Park Operations - Dallas Zoo
Speakers:
Lochlan Wooten, Chief Operating Officer - Riverbanks Zoo
Douglas Rickenbach, Chief Operating Officer - Naples Zoo
Sally Jacobson, Executive Director - Red River Zoo
Dale Schmidt, EVP/Chief Operating Officer - National Aquarium
Charles Hopper, Business Operations Manager - Seattle Aquarium

Date/Time: Thursday, May 28, 2-3:30 PM EDT 

View Recording


 

Managing Membership Through a Changing Landscape

Join this session presented by the AZA Advancement Committee to learn from peers how they are communicating with and supporting their members through closure and re-opening. Topics will include planning for re-opening; special considerations and benefits for members; membership extensions; and budget impacts and planning.
Moderator: Alyssa Pacaut, Membership Manager - Aquarium of the Pacific 
Speakers:
Gail Brown, Chief Development Officer - Reid Park Zoo
Lucia Clifton, Director, Membership - Saint Louis Zoo
Kate Fridholm, Senior Director of Annual Giving - Lincoln Park Zoo
Liz Grover, Development & Member Services Manager - Roger Williams Park Zoo

Date/Time: Wednesday, May 27, 2-3:30 PM EDT 

View Recording


 

Communicating with Our Local Communities

Join this session presented by the AZA Public Relations Committee to learn more about communications around zoo and aquarium openings with first-hand accounts of what has worked for organizations that have already opened.  It will also include reference information for communications building regarding biosecurity and operational aspects of openings.
Moderator: Ted Molter, Chief Marketing Officer, San Diego Zoo Global
Presenters:
Timothy Ng, Zoological Operations and Education Director - Ocean Park
Andy Wood, Chief Operating Officer - Florida Aquarium
Jennifer Vela Director of Marketing, Sales, and Communications - Texas State Aquarium
Erica Hansen, Community Relations Manager - Hogle Zoo 
Lauren Howard, D.V.M., Associate Director, Veterinary Services - San Diego Zoo Global

Date/Time: Thursday, May 14, 1-2:30 PM EDT 

View Recording

Diversity, Equity, Access, & Inclusion (DEAI)

Advancing Diversity, Equity, Access, & Inclusion: Finding and Using an Updated Library of Resources

Join members of the 2020-2021 Executive Leadership Development Program (ELDP) and the Diversity Committee to learn about the reorganized library of resources available to help you and your organization advance its efforts in DEAI. Given the events of this past year, this Action Learning Team of the ELDP focused their project on building upon years of prior work to improve diversity, equity, access, and inclusion within and throughout the AZA community. See the improved website access, reorganized library of resources, and hear why it’s imperative that we each do our part to meet our shared mission.

Date/Time: Friday August 20, 3-4 PM EDT

View Recording 

 

Developing Your DEAI Program

Join members of AZA’s Diversity Committee as we discuss developing and refining your organization's DEAI program. Panelists will provide context, tools, and answer questions to help individuals and organizations on their DEAI journey.

Speakers:
Curtis Bennett (he/him), Director of Equity & Community Engagement - National Aquarium
Jess Niven-Kohring (she/her), Director of Equity Programs - Los Angeles Zoo
Lindsay Mathisen (she/her), Inclusion Coordinator - Brevard Zoo
Mara-Lynne Payne (she/her), Senior Manager of Inclusion, Equity & Diversity - Tennessee Aquarium
Amy Rutherford (she/her), Director, Professional Development & Education - AZA
Dean Watanabe (he/him), Chief Conservation Education Officer - Fresno Chaffee Zoo

Date/Time: Friday, February 5, 12-1:30 PM EST 

View Recording

Education

Supporting Schools Through COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has permanently altered the Pre-K-12 school landscape and the ways in which schools engage with zoo and aquariums. Now more than ever, teachers, caregivers, and students are turning towards trusted cultural organizations as sources for engaging and accurate science education curriculum and programming. In this 90-minute webinar, we will hear from four AZA zoos and aquariums who quickly mobilized and reimagined their educational programming to meet the academic and emotional needs of students and teachers across the country.

Moderator: Elise Bernardoni; Assistant Director of Education, Friends of the National Zoo

Speakers:
Alicia Archer, Education Programs Manager - Aquarium of the Pacific
Andrea Stein, Manager of School Programs - Roger Williams Park Zoo
Jasmine Smith-Gillen, School Programs Specialist - Roger Williams Park Zoo
Theresa Wilson, Education Specialist - ZooAmerica North American Wildlife Park
Tiffany Evans, Educator - St. Louis Zoo

Date/Time: Tuesday, January 26, 12-1:30 PM EST 

View Recording 

 

Live From Our Couches, it's Zoo Education!

2020 is the year that redefined the educator's mantra "meet your audience where they are." From our homes, our yards, behind masks, and 6 feet away, AZA teams have reimagined programs to continue engaging and educating our audiences during a global pandemic. In this 90-minute webinar, we will explore existing programs that underwent a complete transformation or new programs that grew out of the challenges of digital or socially-distanced learning.

Moderator: Elise Bernardoni; Assistant Director of Education, Friends of the National Zoo

Speakers:
Kimberly Coons; Director of Education and Volunteer Services, Rosamond Gifford Zoo
Jessi Parra; Education Programs Specialist/Assistant Camp Director, Friends of the National Zoo
Rosalío Rubio; School Programs Coordinator/Zoo Curator of Education II, Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Gardens
Eric Turner; Volunteer Engagement Supervisor, Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens

Date/Time: Friday, December 11, 3-4:30 PM EST 

View Recording

Trends & More

M4S Webinar Series: Effective Communication - Understanding why our behavioral preferences matter

How can we utilize a tool like DiSC to make our daily communication more effective? What lessons can be learned about ourselves and others? Learn tactics that allow you to communicate with your colleagues more effectively and practice having difficult conversations using these tools.

Speakers:
Laura Martina, Chief People Officer - Fresno Chaffee Zoo

Date/Time: Wednesday, November 10, 1:00-2:00 PM ET 

View Recording

 

M4S Webinar Series: Accountability - A Priority for Top-performing Teams

The word accountability too often has a negative connotation, but the truth is there are more positive outcomes as a result of accountability. High-performing organizations hold accountability as a top priority to build teams, develop leaders, meet strategic goals, instill confidence in the community, and meet the mission. These techniques can be implemented in any role within our organization. This session will touch on the various aspects and perspectives of implementing consistent accountability, not only for the teams you work with or within but also for yourself.

Speakers:
James Bluher, Volunteer Services Manager - Cleveland Metroparks Zoo
Hollie Colahan, VP of Living Collections - Birmingham Zoo
Christina Dembiec, Director of Education - Memphis Zoo
Andi Kornak, Deputy Executive Director - Cleveland Metroparks Zoo

Date/Time: Wednesday, October 13, 1-2 PM EDT 

View Recording*

*due to a recording error, captioning is not included in this recording

 

Audience Focus: Level Up Your Presentation Skills for Maximum Impact

You've created a stellar presentation...but is it truly tailored for the audience you're about to speak to? How much content do they want and what do they need to know to make a decision? How do you straddle the line between delivering a fully scripted presentation and thinking on your feet? What happens when you get that question that you just can't answer?

We'll share best practices learned over the years on how to speak to audiences ranging from the Board and senior leaders to volunteers and conservation partners. And, in the era of COVID-19, speaking skills (both virtual and in-person) are even more important as people, budgets, and time are all stretched thin. Presentations need to be succinct, on point, and purposeful. Your ideas, influence, and impact depend on it! Please bring a presentation (notes, outline, PowerPoint, etc) that you are working on or have delivered recently so you can apply ideas in real-time

Speakers:
Craft Your Presentation with the Audience in Focus - Julie Henry, President, Finish Line Leadership
Audience Focus: Team Members and Volunteers - Debbi Stone, Vice President of Learning, The Florida Aquarium
Audience Focus: Executive Team and Senior Leaders - Jim Wharton, Director of Conservation Engagement and Learning, Seattle Aquarium
Audience Focus: Conservation Partners and Scientists - David Bader, Vaquita SAFE Coordinator
Audience Focus: Board of Directors and Donors - Bill Street, Senior Vice President, Indianapolis Zoological Society

Date/Time: Thursday, September 3, 1:30-3 PM EDT 

View Recording


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