The American Association of Zoo Keepers is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that began in San Diego in 1967 when several keepers joined forces to create a group that promotes professionalism in zoo keeping through education in the most modern and current techniques in animal management.

AAZK membership nationwide currently includes about 2,800 with individuals at all levels of zoo staff from directors, curators and veterinarians to zoo keepers, animal health technicians, volunteers and students. Members are from 48 of the 50 States, 5 Canadian Provinces and 24 foreign countries and represent nearly 250 animal-related facilities.

AAZK National offices are located in Tucson, AZ. To learn more about National AAZK, visit their website at


AAZK San Diego’s Mission Statement

  • To promote and establish good relationships among professional zoo keepers
  • To promote and establish a means to stimulate incentive and greater interest in the zoo keeping profession
  • To support deserving conservation projects to include educating the general public about the need for preserving our natural resources and animal life through these worthwhile efforts
  • To establish materials beneficial to zoo keeper education


2023 AAZK San Diego Board Members

President:                        Kristen Craig
Vice-President:              Mandy Parker
Secretary:                        Anita Brooks
Treasurer:                       Yvette Kemp

2023 AAZK San Diego Officers

Social Media/ PR Officer:                          Bailey Higa
Conservation Officer:                               Caitlyn Thai

For information, email: