Guest Bios

Anthony Nielsen
(Lead Keeper, Lion House and Seal Pool, Chicago’s
Lincoln Park Zoo) [Thursday,  April 22, 2010; 9:00 PM EST] (Zoo Talkin’ Radio I) “Anthony graduated from Iowa State University in 1997 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Fisheries and Wildlife Biology. He joined Chicago’s Lincoln Park Zoo in January of 2000 as a TemporaryKeeper at the Farm-in-the-Zoo exhibit.  Anthony then transferred to the Bird House as an Apprentice Keeper and later in 2000 was hired as a Full-Time Keeper at the Farm-in-the-Zoo. By the end of 2001, Anthony transferred to the Outdoor Bird area/exhibit to work with birds of prey, penguins, other marine/seabirds, and waterfowl (due to renovation at the farm exhibit).   He elected to stay at the Outdoor Bird exhibit and became the Acting Lead Keeper of the area for two  years leading up to 2003.  Anthony relinquished this position and transferred to the zoo’s African Journey exhibit for additional and more diverse experience, as well as an opportunity to be part of the team opening a new building. In 2005, he became the Assistant Lead Keeper of the African Journey exhibit and the Bear Line. Last year (2009), Anthony became the Lead Keeper of the Lion House and Seal Pool exhibits. He has been a member of AAZK National since 2000, attended 6 conferences and presented two papers. He served as the Lincoln Park Zoo AAZK Chapter President, Vice President, and Liaison. Anthony is a member of the Emergency Weapons Team and also completed the Lincoln Park Zoo’s Master Keeper Certification program. I never knew Anthony was an aviculturist or a raptor aficionado. He’s full of surprises.”

Serena Bos
(Animal Trainer,
Discovery Wildlife Center, Alberta, Canada)
[Sunday, May 2, 2010; 11:00 PM (EST)] Alternative Station (Zoo Talkin’ Radio II– Bears On The Air)
“Serena Bos has trained small mammals, as large as beavers, to the largest subspecies of bears for wildlife documentaries and feature films.  ”[The]  Discovery Wildlife Park is home to many movie stars!    Bears, camels, tigers, raccoon and porcupine are just a few of our celebrities. Their credits include movies such as: Anchorman, Dr. Doolittle 2, Grizzly Falls, RV, Deck the Halls, Air Buddies and many more.  We are home to Ruth LaBarge and her many famous bears – Barney, Whopper, Betty, Bonkers and Ursula. Ruth and her bears present the Bear Awareness show twice daily at the park. They educate our visitors on bears and how to act safely in bear country. You may Click Here to see the full resumes of Ruth’s bears.”

Ronda Schwetz
(Primate Area Supervisor,
Denver Zoo)
[Monday,  May 3, 2010; 11:00 PM (EST)] (Zoo Talkin’ Radio II)
“Ronda graduated with a Biology/Psychology degree from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point and then joined the Irvine Park Zoo in 1992 as an Animal Keeper. She moved to Disney’s Animal Kingdom in 1998 as one of the opening team members of the Conservation Station. Ronda accepted a manager position of the Conservation Station in 2000. In 2001, she became a Co-chair of the Children’s Zoo Interest Group. Ronda was then hired by the Denver Zoo as the Primate Area Supervisor in 2005. In 2008, she developed a conservation partnership with the Borneo Orangutan Survival Foundation (BOS) Rehabilitation Centers of Samboja Lestari and Nyaru Menteng. In 2010, Ronda was elected to the Orangutan SSP steering committee and has since taken on the role of  Field Advisor to the SSP.  We will interview Ronda shortly before she leaves for Indonesia and are excited to learn more about her orangutan work after she returns. Hopefully we can convince her to become a Bornean sun bear enthusiast while she is in Southeast Asia.”

Nolan Harvey
(Former Curator, Oregon Coast Aquarium; Trainer of Keiko)
[Monday, May 10, 2010; 11:00 PM (EST)] (Zoo Talkin’ Radio II
“Nolan most recently served as the Curator of Education/Wildlife at the High Desert Museum in Bend, Oregon and prior to that was the Director of Rehabilitation & Animal Care at the Free Willy Keiko Foundation & Oregon Coast Aquarium (Newport, Oregon & Heimay, Iceland).”

Grey Stafford, PhD
(Author & Director of Conservation,
Wildlife World Zoo & Aquarium; Co-host Zoo Talkin’ Radio) [Monday, May 17, 2010; 11:00 PM (EST)] (Zoo Talkin’ Radio II)
“Dr. Grey Staf
ford is the author of the pet training book, ZOOmility: Keeper Tales of Training with Positive Reinforcement. Animal Adventurer Jungle Jack Hanna wrote the book’s foreword. ZOOmility was featured during Grey’s recent appearance on NBC’s The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. Grey has also appeared on news shows on CNN’s HLN including Prime News and Issues with JVM to debate the importance of zoological parks and the benefits of training with positive reinforcement.

Growing up in Cleveland, Grey started his zoological career as a marine mammal trainer at place once called SeaWorld of Ohio. Over the next several years, he learned to train and present dolphins, killer whales, sea lions, walrus, and otters to thousands of spectators under the direction of well-known trainers that included Ted Turner and Thad Lacinak.

Grey at Dolphin Quest
Grey with one of his charges at Dolphin Quest

Hoping to one day bridge the gap between the behavioral and biological sciences, Grey later completed his doctoral research in reproductive and environmental physiology at Kent State University studying New World primates. It was during this time that he began offering training seminars and workshops on the use of positive reinforcement in cities across the U.S. To date, Grey has held seminars in Houston, Cleveland, Chicago, San Diego, Saskatoon, Baltimore, Central California and more.

In 1996, Grey was invited to speak at the annual conference of the Association of Pet Dog trainers (APDT) held in Phoenix, Ariz., on the subject of proactive aggression management using positive reinforcement. A year later, Grey was again invited to speak to the APDT in Memphis, Tenn. In 2008, he again was invited to speak at the annual conference in Louisville, KY.

After earning his doctoral degree, he found himself back on stage training, presenting, and caring for a whole new world of terrestrial and avian species, first as Curator of Education at Wildlife World Zoo and later as Director of Animal Management for Dolphin Quest.

Jay Leno
Talk-show host Jay Leno feeds one of Grey’s favorites.

Today, having returned to the Wildlife World Zoo & Aquarium as Director of Conservation, Grey appears on television several times each week promoting wild animals and positive reinforcement training on KPHO, KSAZ and KTVK. He particularly enjoys fielding viewer pet training questions on KTVK several times each month.

He has made contributions to nationally broadcast shows including: The Ellen DeGeneres Show, The Late Show with David Letterman, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Larry King Live, Martha Stewart, Rosie O’Donnell, Good Morning America and Extra.

Grey serves on the editorial advisory board for the International Marine Animal Trainers Association (IMATA), and is a member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). He has presented papers at conferences at each of these professional organizations and has served as an editor for the behavioral glossary posted on

Working with so many different species, you never know what might be taking up residence with Grey, his wife Karen, their Italian Greyhound mix, “Venti” and GSD “Nia.”

Barbara Heidenreich
(Animal Training Consultant & Owner of
Good Bird, Inc.)
[Monday,  May 31, 2010; 10:00 PM (EST)] (Zoo Talkin’ Radio II)
“Barbara Heidenreich has been a professional in the field of animal training since 1990.  She consults on animal training in zoos and other animal related facilities. Barbara has been a part of the development and production of more than 15 different free flight education programs and has worked with 20 different animal facilities. She provides consulting services to zoos, nature centers and other animal facilities through her company Animal Training and Consulting Services. In her career she has trained animals, trained staff, and/or presented shows at facilities around the world.

Barbara also owns and operates Good Bird Inc (, a provider of parrot behavior and training products to the companion parrot community. These products include Good Bird Magazine, books, videos, and parrot training workshops. Barbara Heidenreich has been a featured speaker on animal training on six continents and has been published in nine different languages. She is a former president of the International Association of Avian Trainers and Educators ( ) and served on the Board of Directors  (1997-2009).”

Tammy Quist Thies
(Executive Director,
Wild Cat Sanctuary)
[Monday,  June, 17, 2010; 11:00 PM (EST)] (Zoo Talkin’ Radio II)
“Tammy is the founder of the Wildcat Sanctuary, a 501(c) (3) nonprofit that provides a safe home to cougars, tiger, lynxes and other wildcats in need of shelter. She is a native Minnesotan and full-time advertising professional who became aware of the need for such a facility through her exposure to big cats during photo shoots. She learned that throughout the United States, tens of thousands of these animals are privately owned as pets, and used as performers or for-profit breeding. Too often the cats outlive their usefulness and have nowhere to go. The Wildcat Sanctuary provides a home for life and is a no-kill facility. Animals are not bought, sold, bred or traded. Each resident is given every opportunity to behave naturally in a wonderful environment.  The Wildcat Sanctuary provides educational outreach seminars to educate the public about the captive wildlife crisis across the United States, as well as supporting legislative efforts banning these practices. Tammy was very active in testifying on behalf of the new Minnesota Exotic Animal Law that bans keeping dangerous exotic animals as pets.

The Sanctuary is accredited by The Association of Sanctuaries and is the only big cat sanctuary in the upper Midwest. Tammy also serves on the board of the American Sanctuary Association which currently governs 35 sanctuaries in the United States.  The Wildcat Sanctuary also provides rescue services and cross-country transportation and relocation placement with other accredited facilities.”

Siew Te Wong, MS, PhD Candidate
(Chief  Executive Officer,
Bornean Sun Bear Conservation Center)
[Monday,  June, 14, 2010; 11:30 PM (EST)] (Zoo Talkin’ Radio II– Bears On The Air)
{As posted on WildlifeDirect by Siew Te} “Siew Te Wong, a Malaysian wildlife biologist and sun bear expert.. For the last 13 years, Wong has been studying and working on the ecological conservation of the sun bear. He is one of the few Malaysian wildlife biologists trained in a western country. He did both his Bachelor of Science and Master of Science at the University of Montana in Missoula, and is continuing for his doctorate degree there. His pioneering studies of sun bear ecology in the Borneo rainforest revealed the elusive life history of the sun bear in the dense jungle. Wong’s research has taken him to the most threatened wildlife habitat on Earth, where field work is exceedingly difficult. While rapid habitat destruction from unsustainable logging practices, the conversion of the sun bear’s habitat into palm oil plantations and uncontrolled poaching activities paint a bleak picture for the future of the sun bear, Wong is determined to help the present situation of sun bears in Southeast Asia.

Wong is the CEO of the Bornean Sun Bear Conservation Centre in Sabah, Malaysian Borneo, which he founded in 2008. He was also a fellow of the Flying Elephants Foundation, which awards individuals from a broad range of disciplines in the arts and sciences who have demonstrated singular creativity, passion, integrity and leadership and whose work inspires a reverence for the natural world. Wong is also the former co-chair of the Sun Bear Expert Team, under the IUCN/Species Survival Commission’s Bear Specialist Group and a current member of three IUCN/SSC Specialist Groups.”

Rick Berlinski, DVM
(Staff Veterinarian, Toledo Zoo)
[Monday, July 5th, 2010; 10:00 PM (EST)] (
Zoo Talkin’ Radio II) Rick’s Bio

Richard Ellis
(Research Associate, American Museum of Natural History)
[Monday, July 12, 2010; 10:00 PM (EST)] (
Zoo Talkin’ Radio II– Bears On The Air) Richard’s Bio

Jackson Zee, MA, MS
[Expert Team Co -Chair, Captive Bears, Bear Specialist Group, IUCN]
[Monday, July 26, 2010; 10:00 PM (EST)] (Zoo Talkin’ Radio II– Bears On The Air)
“Jackson Zee started his career with wildlife as a high school docent. Jackson began his studies in New York City with Associate degrees in animal health and as a paramedic then continued to attain a Bachelors of Arts degree in psychology and a Bachelors of Science degree in biology. Jackson completed his Masters in Science at the University of California in behavioral ecology and pursued his certificate in clinical animal behavior in Australia then qualified for his license in the UK. His interest in protecting nature led him to working as an educator, then a wild animal keeper, curator, sanctuary manager, associate clinical animal behaviorist and conservationist with an interest in animal welfare and sustainable development. Jackson has been providing hands‑on support and expertise with captive care of wild animals (bears) in rehabilitation programs and the reduction of cruelty towards animals.”

Ady Gil
[Conservationist, Affiliation: Sea Shepherd Conservation Society]
[Monday, August 2, 2010; 10:00 PM (EST)] (Zoo Talkin’ Radio II) Ady’s Bio

John Scott Foster, PhD
[Executive Director, New York State Zoo]
[Monday, August 9, 2010 (*To Be Rescheduled- Technical Difficulties); 10:00 PM (EST)] (Zoo Talkin’ Radio II)
John’s Bio

Robert Buchanan
[President and CEO,
Polar Bears International]
[Monday, August 16, 2010; 10:00 PM (EST)] (
Zoo Talkin’ Radio II– Bears On The Air) Robert Buchanan grew up on the north side of the Florida Everglades and at an early age came to understand how man could change the environment and the important need for stewardship.  He did his undergraduate and graduate work at the University of South Florida while starting his marketing career with a major worldwide beverage company.

His love and respect for Mother Nature deepened through his travels with wife Carolyn to the Arctic.  It was during those repeat trips to the North that Robert discovered how his marketing and finance expertise could be of assistance to world-leading polar bear and Arctic researchers.  In 1999, he was asked to create a development plan for the fledgling conservation group, Polar Bears Alive.  After a year’s in-depth research, Polar Bears International (PBI) was born as an organization with a focus on polar bear research and proactive education on how to conserve the great white bears and their habitat.  With that mission, PBI has attracted some of the world’s finest scientists, zoologists, land management professionals, eco-tour operators, educators, government agencies and other NGOs.

Under Robert’s leadership, PBI has grown into an organization with an international scope, supporting projects throughout the circumpolar North and reaching audiences as far away as Japan and Australia with our conservation message. Funding provided by PBI helped support research that led to the listing of the polar bear as a threatened species by the U.S. government. PBI is so well-respected by scientists that it was one of just two conservation groups invited to the recent IUCN Polar Bear Specialist Group meeting. Most recently, thanks to the vision and leadership of both Robert and Carolyn, PBI signed an MOU with the Association of Zoos and Aquariums that will introduce educational materials about polar bear conservation and climate change into all AZA zoos. It also encourages the regular exchange of research between zoologists and scientists who study polar bears in the wild – the first time an agreement has been reached for this type of critical information-sharing.  *This biography was provided by PBI and was included in congratulatory remarks for Robert’s acceptance of the Chicago Zoological Society’s prestigious George B. Rabb Conservation Award.

Doug Hotle
[Curator of Herpetology, Albuqurque Bio Park]
[Monday, August 23, 2010; 10:00 PM (EST)] (Zoo Talkin’ Radio II)
“Doug has been in the exotic animal field for nearly 30 years. Although he specializes in the “belly crawlers,” Doug has worked with all taxa through his career. From Ants to elephants, he has seen it all. Doug has worked his way through the zoo ranks from keeper, to General Curator and even Executive Director with AZA institutions. For a brief period Doug stepped out of the zoo field to pursue research in the realm of snake venom as it applies to biomedical discovery. His work there resulted in significant advances in venom research, specimen husbandry and the understanding of previously unknown venoms. Now Doug is back where he belongs as Curator of Herpetology with the Albuquerque BioPark and excited to help move the zoo into new frontiers.”

Luke Hunter, PhD
[Executive Director, Panthera; IUCN Cat Specialist Group]
[Monday, August 30, 2010; 10:00 PM (EST)] (
Zoo Talkin’ Radio II) Luke Hunter is the Vice President of Panthera, a New-York based conservation charity he helped to create in 2006 which is dedicated to the range-wide conservation of the world’s wild cat species. Prior to that, he headed the Great Cats Program of the Wildlife Conservation Society, and held positions in universities in Australia and South Africa. Hunter has worked on the ecology and conservation of carnivores in Africa since 1992. His doctorate and post-doctoral research developed methods to re-establish populations of large cats in areas where they had been extirpated from Southern Africa. His current projects include developing conservation strategies for lions across their African range, assessing the effects of sport hunting on leopards and lions outside protected areas, working with teams in the Brazilian Pantanal to reduce the conflict between ranchers and jaguars, and the first intensive study of Persian leopards and the last surviving Asiatic cheetahs in Iran. Hunter has contributed to 90 scientific papers and popular articles, and has written five books. He is writing his sixth book A Field Guide to Carnivores of the World to be published in 2011.”

Lucy Spelman, DVM, Dipl. ACZM
[Past Director of Health/Zoo Director, National Zoo ; Author]
[Monday, September 6, 2010; 9:00 PM (EST)] (Zoo Talkin’ Radio II)
Lucy’s BioDr. Lucy H. Spelman is a veterinarian, educator, public speaker, media consultant, and author.  She grew up with a menagerie of animals on an old dairy farm in rural Connecticut. While in middle school, she looked forward to “old clothes Wednesday,” a day set aside by one of her teachers to explore the nature trails across the street. She earned a bachelor of arts in biology from Brown University, then her veterinary degree from the University of California at Davis, and completed her post-doctoral training at North Carolina State University. Board-certified by the American College of Zoological Medicine in 1994, Dr. Spelman’s work experience includes nearly ten years with the Smithsonian’s National Zoo, half as a clinical veterinarian, and half as its director. She joined the Mountain Gorilla Veterinary Project in October 2006 as its Africa-based regional manager. During the 2009-2010 academic year, Lucy was a visiting Assitant Professor at Brown University where she initially earned a B.A. in biology (1985.)  She taught for Dr. Ruth Colwill, a Professor in the Pscychology Department, who is a specialist on animal behavior and was on sabbatical.  Lucy taught a senior seminar on primate behavior the fall, and a first-year seminar on animal health in the spring.  This fall (2010), she will teach a course at the Rhode Island School of Design as part-time faculty. Her course is titled: Human-Anima Interactions: How One Species Impacts Another.

Lucy enjoys sharing her work with others through all forms of media. In addition to writing, she has been filmed at work with animals in more than a dozen cable television documentaries, and as served as a consultant for various media and education divisions of Discovery Communications, Inc. “We’re all in this together,” she says of today’s conservation challenges.  In 2008, along with co-editor Dr. Ted Mashima, she published “The Rhino with Glue-On Shoes,” a collection of heart-warming stories written by zoo and wild animal vets about their patients.  In 2009, the book was published in paperback in the US in 2009, translated and published in Estonian, in Japanese, and in the UK under a different title, “The Hippo with Toothache.”

Lucy is also a dynamic speaker with amazing stories to tell about taking care of animals in every imaginable setting, from our pets at home to those remaining in the vanishing wild.  She speaks candidly of lessons learned, including the importance of understanding how the health of one species impacts another.  These days, she keeps one eye on her patients and the other on the bigger picture of global health.

Dr. Spelman’s clinical experience includes five years as staff veterinarian at the National Zoo in Washington, DC. She then became its first female director (2000)–the youngest person ever to hold this position, and the only female veterinarian among her zoo director colleagues. Six months into the job, she journeyed to China and returned with the now-famous giant panda pair, Mei Xiang and Tian Tian. Faced with a substantial backlog of building and exhibit repairs, she initiated a major revitalization program for the historic Zoo, focusing on bringing the science of animal care and conservation to the public. During her four-and-a-half year tenure as director, new exhibits at the National Zoo were designed as living laboratories, tailored to the needs of each species. She secured the Zoo’s first multimillion dollar corporate partnerships, quadrupled its federal funding for capital renewal, and spearheaded its first strategic plan in over a decade.

While serving as regional veterinary field manager for the Mountain Gorilla Veterinary Project, Dr. Spelman promoted a team-oriented one-health approach to gorilla medicine. The in-country field vets, who work in Uganda, Rwanda, and the Democratic Republic of Congo, now meet regularly for rounds and training. Each has taken on greater responsibility for case management, including the rescue and rehabilitation of orphaned gorillas. Together with the project director and support staff, she has also helped establish new strategic partnerships designed to help MGVP, Inc. raise public awareness, support, and funds. She provided the content for the re-design of the project’s new website,, and started blogging.  Her blog drew thousands of online visitors each month on WildlifeDirect, Gorilla Doctors or on Discovery Channel’s website, Gorillas in Peril.

Dr. Spelman has published two dozen scientific papers on various aspects of zoo and wild animal medicine (see below list.) She has been interviewed for national and international press coverage, and featured in various trade publications including People Magazine (2001); Cool Women, Hot Jobs, by Tina Schwager (Free Spirit Publishing, 2002); The Tiger Has A Toothache, by Patricia Lauber (National Geographic Children’s Books, 1999); I Want to Be a Veterinarian, by Stephanie Maze (Harcourt Paperbacks, 1999). She has been filmed working with animals cable television documentaries, including Animal Planet’s “Corwin’s Quest: Realm of the Yeti” (2006), “A Panda Is Born” (2005), “Meet the Pandas” (2001), and seven episodes of “Total Zoo” (2000); Discovery Channel’s “Kandula: An Elephant Story” (2003); Turner Broadcasting’s “Hidden Zoo” (1997).

In her words, “Our own health is connected to that of animals and the environment. The more we study these connections, the better we understand how to maintain or restore health to entire ecosystems. If we share this new knowledge in exciting ways, we can inspire others to care and take action. We’re all in this together.”

Ben Kilham
[Author; Featured Bear Biologist, National Geographic Magazine]
[Monday, September 20, 2010; 8:00 PM (EST)] (Zoo Talkin’ Radio II– Bears On the Air)
Ben’s Bio When I started this journey 14 years ago, I had very low expectations and a very simple idea.  I wanted to study carnivore behavior, perhaps with fishers (a large woodland weasel), coyotes, or bobcat.  I had this interest since before I attended college.  It grew out of growing up with my father Lawrence Kilham.  He was a virologist at the Dartmouth Medical School who studied bird behavior as an amateur.  Our house was home for many species of wild visitors from woodpeckers to a leopard.  My interest was keen; I often helped my father with observations and raising wild creatures. As a result, he had four books published and wrote as many as 125 scientific journal articles.

I am what is now called a “gifted” dyslexic, that is I have an IQ in the top 1 percent of the human population but I read at a “third grade” level.  While I was unaware of the term dyslexia at the time, I managed to graduate from the University of New Hampshire with a B.S. in Wildlife in 1974, I my grades and test scores were erratic at best and I was unable to get into graduate school.  With my dreams of studying animal behavior and working with it professionally were dashed, I enrolled and graduated from a trade school for gunsmithing in Lakewood ,  Colorado.  It was apparent I had another calling, as I flourished working with my hands.  For the first time in my life, the results of my efforts reflected my ability, and the results were tangible.  My experience as a gunsmith was challenging and personally rewarding (see biography), but I still had aspirations and an interest in animal behavior.
In 1982, my wife Debbie, who I met while we both worked in  product engineering at Colt Firearms,  and I moved back to Lyme, New Hampshire where I opened my own custom gunsmithing business.  I didn’t fully comprehend why I was such a poor student until after I was accepted as a Special Student at Dartmouth’s Thayer School of Engineering.  I was accepted at the recommendation of two of my customers who were professors at Thayer who had recognized my ability for mechanical design.  I was tested for learning disabilities and for the first time understood why I had such difficulty with school.  Despite an IEP (individual educational plan) I could not keep up with the reading or calculus and quickly dropped out.
What I learned from this experience I wished I had known twenty years earlier.  I learned that I was intelligent and that I could succeed at anything if I relied on my abilities and developed methods that worked for me.  My methods for both mechanical design and behavioral research involve observation, experience and testing with experience.  I  follow the evidence and use scientific literature only as  reference.  My own methods have allowed me to do qualitative research without being entangled in the trappings of professional science.
There is a price to pay for independence, and that is that professional science controls both public funding and access to the scientific journals.  I have been fortunate that my work has been received so well by the public at large.  I am often asked,”What do scientists think of your work?”  While I do have the support of many scientists, it is the average person that ultimately judges the work of science.  My goals are:

Thane Maynard, MS
[Director, Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden]
Monday, September 27, 2010 (tentative); 8:00 PM (EST)] (Zoo Talkin’ Radio II)
“Thane Maynard is the Director of the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden.  The mission of his work teaching and writing mirrors that of the zoo: to tell the story of biological diversity, natural history, and wildlife conservation to the general public.

Thane is best known as writer and host of numerous wildlife programs, including the daily “public radio series” the “90-Second Naturalist”, which airs on stations across North America.  He has been featured on “Good Morning America”, “Today”, and “CBS.

As a boy growing up in central Florida, he explored the low country swamps in the days before condominiums.  From this initial interest in wild places, he went on to receive his B.A degree in environmental studies from Rollins College in his hometown of Winter Park, Florida, and his M.S. degree from the University of Michigan School of Natural Resources.

Thane is the author of thirteen books on wildlife.  His latest book, Hope for Animals & Their World which he co-authored with Jane Goodall will be available in September, 2009.

In addition to his work for the Cincinnati Zoo, Thane is an active member of the American Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), serving on the Field Conservation Committee and Protected Areas Initiative. Thane is involved in the Cincinnati community as a member of Leadership Cincinnati Class XVII. He is also a member of the Board of Trustees for the Margo Marsh Biodiversity Foundation in Washington, D.C.”

Angela Glatston, PhD
[Curator of Mammals, Rotterdam Zoo; Author; SSC IUCN (SCSG)]
[Monday, October 4, 2010; Time-TBA] (
Zoo Talkin’ Radio II)
“[Angela has] been working at the Rotterdam Zoo for longer than [she] cares to remember (or cares to admit to!!) and her job has changed several times along the way. To begin at the beginning. She started in the ‘zoo world’ in London while   working on her PhD (Behaviour and Reproduction of the Lesser Mouse Lemur). My then supervisor moved from University Collecge London to work at the Wellcome Institute at the London Zoo and took his students with him.

As [she]  finished her research, and ran out of money, the job in Rotterdam [became available] and she never looked back. Her first job in Rotterdam was as a Research biologist, half of the then Research Department. Angela’s main field of interest was the impact of environmental factors (climate, group structure, visitors, enclosure design, etc.) on behaviour, especially maternal behaviour. One of the first subjects to catch her eye were the red pandas. The zoo had two groups at the time and breeding success was very poor.  She gradually got more involved with the red pandas and initiated the International Studbook for them at the suggestion of her then director. One thing lead to another and she gradually got more involved in different aspects of the red panda, not just the breeding programme in Europe, I also became involved with the breeding programme in India and with various activities in the field there. Angela is a member of the IUCN Small Carnivore Specialist Group and for a time was chair of what then was the Procyonid and Ailurids group before it  merged with the other small carnivores. She drafted the Procyonid and Ailurids Action Plan.
At the Rotterdam Zoo her job moved from the Research Department to animal curation. She first  became a curator of hoofed stock and then later  the curator of primates. Recently her interests have become more focused on conservation.  By the end of the year her position in Rotterdam will have changed again and she  will move to the conservation department!! For the last two years Angela has been the chair of the EAZA European Carnivore Conservation Campaign (A program to be completed this year). This campaign promotes awareness, fund-raising and political lobbying. At  present the campaign is petitioning for better implementation of the legislation controlling the use of poisons in Europe.  She hopes to publish her red panda book in October of this year.”

Laurie Marker, PhD
[Executive Director,
Cheetah Conservation Fund; IUCN Cat Specialist Group][Monday, October 11, 2010; 8:00 PM (EST)] (Zoo Talkin’ Radio II)  Laurie’s Bio

Sarah Pacyna, MS, PhD Candidate
[Program Manager, Global Marine Programs, Wildlife Conservation Society]
[Monday, October 18, 2010; 8:00 PM (EST)] (Zoo Talkin’ Radio II) Sarah’s Bio

Sharon Deem, DVM, PhD, Dipl. ACZM
[Veterinary Epidemiologist, St. Louis Zoo’s Wild Care Institute– Galapagos][October 25, 2010; 8:00 PM (EST)] (Zoo Talkin’ Radio II) “Dr. Sharon L. Deem is a wildlife veterinarian with a D.V.M. from the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine and a Ph.D. from the University of Florida.  Sharon also completed a residency in zoological and wildlife medicine at the University of Florida, becoming a diplomate of the American College of Zoological Medicine in 1998.  Sharon has conducted conservation and research projects in 20 countries around the world.  Her research has included, among many others, a health-monitoring program for gorillas in central Africa, health assessments of sea turtles in Africa and the Americas, health and ecological studies of maned wolves in Bolivia, health care of working elephants in Myanmar, and avian health studies in the Galapagos Islands, Ecuador.  Her interests in wildlife veterinary medicine focus on the spread of disease between domestic animals and wildlife and the health impact of environmental changes and human contact on wild species.   During her veterinary career she has been fortunate to work as a zoo clinician, epidemiologist, and wildlife veterinarian.   Sharon has worked for the Wildlife Conservation Society, Smithsonian National Zoo, and currently is with the WildCare Institute, Saint Louis Zoo.  She is the author of over 65 referred articles, 15 book chapters, and numerous non-referred papers.  Sharon has a special fondness for elephants, sea turtles and jaguars!
Bio- School for Field Studies (SFS) ; Bio- American Association of Zoo Veterinarians website (AAZV)

Matthew Durnin, PhD
[Asia- Pacific Science Director, The Nature Conservancy]
[Monday, October TBA; TBA] (
Zoo Talkin’ Radio II– Bears On The Air) “Since 1994, Matt has been living in and conducting research on wildlife in China. Prior to joining The Nature Conservancy, he was a MacArthur Foundation post doctoral fellow at the California Academy of Sciences and lead mammalogist on a project cataloging the biodiversity of the Gaoligongshan area in western Yunnan province. From 1998 to 2001 he conducted his Ph.D. research on the wild giant pandas of the Wolong Nature Reserve in Sichuan province. He completed his Ph.D. in wildlife ecology at the University of California Berkeley in 2005 (Dissertation, Reproductive Behavior, Ecology, and Demographic Patterns of Free Ranging Giant Panda in China’s Wolong Nature Reserve). Some of Matt’s other work in China includes revising WWF-China’s Giant Panda Strategic Action Plan (2008 – 2010) and in 1994, leading an assessment of wildlife resources in Ganzi Prefecture, Sichuan Province. Additionally, he spent 2 years with the Australian International Development Bureau (AIDAB) driving developmental aid programs across China.

Previously in the U.S., Matt was an environmental consultant with Ecology and Environment and obtained a Masters Degree from Duke University in 1990 completing his thesis research on coastal zone resource management. His main research interests are in the areas of mammalian carnivore population biology, behavioral ecology and conservation. More specifically he is interested in better understanding how carnivore ecology and behavior puts them into conflict with human populations and how this understanding can be utilized to reduce human-wildlife conflict. In his research he is particularly interested in integrating more traditional methods of collecting behavioral and demographic data from the field (e.g. radio-telemetry and direct observation) with non-invasive techniques such as genetic tagging and camera-trapping. He is a council member of the International Association for Bear Research and Managing Editor of the International Bear News.”

Scott Lope
[Animal Planet’s Hero of the Year; Operations Director, Big Cat Rescue]
[TBA/rescheduled  (EST)] (Zoo Talkin’ Radio II) Scott’s Bio

Dan Subaitis
[Director of Animal Management, Phoenix Zoo]
[TBA; 8:00 PM (EST-TBA] (Zoo Talkin’ Radio II)
Dan’s Bio

Ron Swaisgood, PhD
[Director of Applied Animal Ecology, San Diego Zoo’s Institute for Conservation Research]
[TBA; 8:00 PM (EST)-TBA] (
Zoo Talkin’ Radio II) Ron’s Bio

David Braun
[VP, News & Editorial Services, National Geographic Digital Media, National Geographic Society]
[TBA; 8:00 PM (EST)-TBA] (
Zoo Talkin’ Radio II)  David’s Bio

Scott Silver, PhD
[City Zoo Director, Queens WCS]
[TBA; 8:00 PM (EST)-TBA (
Zoo Talkin’ Radio II-Bears On The Air)  Scott’s Bio

Lynn Rogers, PhD
[Legendary Bear Biologist, Wildlife Research Institute]
[TBA; 8:00 PM (EST)-TBA] (
Zoo Talkin’ Radio II-Bears On The Air) “As WRI’s principal biologist, Lynn Rogers, Ph.D., has spent over 42 years learning about wildlife and sharing his information with the public. Using airplanes, vehicles, and snowshoes, he has radio-tracked over 100 bears in the vast forests of northeastern Minnesota, studying some for as long as 22 years.

Rogers began studying bears in his home state of Michigan in 1967, moving black bears away from campgrounds and residential areas for the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. In fall 1969, he moved to northeastern Minnesota and began a broad, ecological study of black bears as a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Minnesota. The project was conceived and funded by Wallace and Mary Lee Dayton and the Minneapolis Big Game Club. Scores of volunteers and students helped make the project a success. By 1975, Rogers’ bear study was ranked one of the four top studies of large mammals in the world, along with studies by Jane Goodall, Brian Bertram, and Ian Hamilton. Professor E. O. Wilson of Harvard University wrote, “A new level of resolution has been attained, in which free-ranging individuals are tracked from birth through socialization, parturition, and death, and their idiosyncrasies, personal alliances, and ecological relationships recorded in clinical detail.”

The study became even more detailed in the next two decades. Rogers formed trusting relationships with wild black bears, including mothers with cubs, and spent 24-hour periods walking and resting with these intelligent animals, detailing their activities, diet, ecology, social organization, vocalizations, and more, providing much of the scientific information on black bear behavior available today. Discoveries continue as Rogers and his research assistants develop new research techniques focusing on how we can better coexist with black bears in their increasingly urbanized environment. Rogers works tirelessly to educate the public and decision-makers about bears. As part of that effort, he founded the North American Bear Center.

Rogers has written over a hundred scientific articles on black bear behavior and ecology and has served as senior author on more peer-reviewed scientific articles on bears than anyone in the world. He has created several museum exhibits and has edited many scientific articles, books, and TV scripts. In Minnesota, Rogers worked with the legislature and the Department of Natural Resources to improve bear management.

Worldwide, the media carries his information to over a hundred million people each year. Over a half million people visit the North American Bear Center’s educational web site The most recent documentary about his work “The Man Who Walks With Bears” aired over 70 times on Animal Planet TV channel since 2001. A BBC/Animal Planet documentary will be released in fall 2009.

As people learn more about black bears, they become more tolerant. Today, people are allowing black bears to repopulate parts of America where bears have not lived for over a century.

Regarded by many as the Jane Goodall of black bears, Rogers has a Ph.D. in Ecology and Behavioral Biology from the University of Minnesota. Rewards include the Quality Research Award from the U. S. Forest Service and the Anna M. Jackson Award from the American Society of Mammalogists.”

Clyde Peeling
[Herpetologist, Clyde Peeling’s Reptileland]
[TBA; 8:00 PM (EST)-TBA] (
Zoo Talkin’ Radio II) Clyde’s Bio

Conrad Schmitt
[Curator of Mammals, Zoo Miami]
[Monday, TBA; 8:00 PM (EST)- TBA] (Zoo Talkin’ Radio II)  Conrad’s Bio

Harry Peachey
[Curator/ Elephant Manager, Columbus Zoo & Aquarium; International Elephant Foundation]
[Monday, TBA; 8:00 PM (EST)- TBA] (Zoo Talkin’ Radio II)
“Harry Peachey began his career with elephants at the Indianapolis zoo in 1974 and began working at the Columbus Zoo in 1976. In 1987, Harry was promoted to the Zoo’s Elephant Manager and Head keeper of Pachyderms. During his cumulative 30 years of experience with captive elephant management, Harry has worked with both Asian and African elephants, including males of both species. During his tenure at the Columbus Zoo, Harry has traveled to both Asia and Africa, often in conjunction with in situ conservation projects that have received support from the Columbus Zoo, and has been fortunate enough to come into contact with both wild and “domesticated” elephants. In April of 1998, he spent several weeks in Indonesia, a portion of his time in Jakarta meeting with government officials in both the CITES Office and the Department of Forestry. In April of 2000, Harry served on the Steering Committee for a meeting held in Bogor, Indonesia to review the problems facing elephant conservation in Sumatra. Since his return from Indonesia and his exposure to the difficult circumstances confronting both the Elephant Training Centers and in situ elephant conservation in Sumatra, issues which have been complicated by the economic crisis in Asia, Harry has been actively involved in fundraising to support veterinary care for Sumatra’s captive elephant population. Harry has also served as an elephant consultant to several other zoos. Harry is currently serving as a member of the Board of Directors for the Elephant Manager’s Association, and as a member of the AZA Elephant TAG/SSP Management Group.”

William Conway, PhD
[Senior Conservationist; Wildlife Conservation Society] [Monday; 8:00 PM (EST)-TBA]
(Zoo Talkin’ Radio)
William Conway began his zoological career at the St. Louis Zoo, became ornithology curator at the New York Zoological Society’s Bronx Zoo in 1956, then Bronx Zoo director, general director of the Society and president leading the evolution of NYZS to become the Wildlife Conservation Society. In 1960, he began a series of projects in South America focusing on wildlife conservation in Patagonia where a series of parks and reserves and a community of scientist conservationists were fostered. He stepped down as WCS CEO in 1999, was appointed senior conservationist, and continues his fieldwork.

Under Conway, WCS created an International Conservation division conducting more than 350 science and conservation projects in 53 nations. The Society’s facilities expanded from the Bronx Zoo and New York Aquarium to include New York’s Central Park, Queens and Prospect Park Zoos (as well as various field stations) and its objectives enlarged with major in-country conservation, environmental education, zoo exhibition, and field veterinary programs.

Conway led the development of the Association of Zoos and Aquarium’s Accreditation Program, Species Survival Program and Field Conservation Committee, which focuses zoos on in situ conservation. He is a past-president of the AZA and has contributed widely to wildlife conservation and to park creation with a focus in southern South America. His New York zoo work includes the renovated Central Park Zoo, the Bronx Zoo’s JungleWorld, Wild Asia, World of Birds, World of Darkness, Himalayan Highlands, Ethiopian Highlands, and “Congo,” whose admission fees go to help the exhibited animals in their African homelands. He has been a director of many conservation organizations and has received a variety of honors including the Hediger Award of the World Zoo and Aquarium Association, Marlin Perkins Award of the AZA, WCS Gold Medal, The Audubon Medal, Order of the Golden Ark (WWF), Peter Scott Medal of the IUCN SSC, distinguished service award of the Society for Conservation Biology, the Henry Shaw Medal of the Missouri Botanical Garden. He is an Honorary Fellow of the Zoological Society of London and has received several honorary degrees. Conway has written more than 250 popular and technical articles on international wildlife conservation, zoos, ornithology, wild animal propagation, and Patagonia.

Dr. Steve Wolverton, (Faculty Member, Dept. of Geography, University of North Texas); (November 15, 2010)
Steve is an environmental scientist and archaeologist specializing in paleozoology of North America during the Holocene. He is assistant professor in environmental archaeology and conservation paleozoology at the University of North Texas, Department of Geography. His interests span ecology, paleoecology of North America, environmental archaeology, paleozoology, and conservation biology. His recent research focuses on white-tailed deer and black bear biology and the use of datasets from zooarchaeology and paleontology to address modern issues in conservation biology. In addition, Steve has interests in analytical chemistry and has on-going research in artifact residue analysis including fatty-acid and protein residues from pottery.

Dr. Ian Dutton (Chief Executive Officer, Alaska SeaLife Center); (Nov 29, 2010)