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Oklahoma City Zoo & Botanical Garden
Haddonfield, NJ, United States
29 days ago
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Oklahoma City Zoo & Botanical Garden
Haddonfield, New Jersey, United States
29 days ago


The Oklahoma City Zoo & Botanical Garden is the leading cultural attraction in the State of Oklahoma attracting over 1.1 million visitors annually. The Zoo is home to over 1,900 animals from over 500 different species on 119 acres in the Adventure District of Oklahoma.

The Oklahoma City Zoo are searching for a Chief Operating Officer (COO) – a newly created position - to support their rapidly growing Zoo; enhance its guest services initiatives; and maintain its reputation for excellence as a global leader in conservation and education.

The Oklahoma City Zoo is dedicated to continually improving the employee experience in a team-oriented environment. Oklahoma City Zoo leaders play a vital part in fostering a healthy and inspiring culture of animal care, conservation, and guest experience. We are committed to proactive management practices and promoting professional growth opportunities for all staff. We focus on leadership qualities that foster high trust relationships with staff, encouraging peer interactions that are positive and constructive, understanding the value of community, and actively listening to others.

This position is Full Time/Exempt and offers an amazing opportunity to grow along with the organization and develop a long-term management career path.  A competitive total compensation package includes medical, dental, vision, life, long term, and short-term disability; 401(k) plan with match, etc. 

Job Summary: The Chief Operating Officer (COO) will design and implement business operations, oversee the operations of the Zoo’s guest experience and facilities, oversee and manage the Zoo’s on-site membership programs, and establish policies that promote the Zoo’s mission, culture and vision.

The COO role is a critical member of the Zoo’s senior management team, reporting only to the Chief Executive Officer (CEO).

The COO will coordinate with the Vice President of Conservation and Research and the Director of Education to integrate the Zoo’s on-site guest engagement initiatives to further enhance the Zoo’s high-quality guest experiences.

The goal of the COO position is to secure the functionality of the Zoo’s business by ensuring exceptional guest experiences and high-quality presentation on the grounds, gardens, and buildings to drive greater mission impact and financial success.

Essential Job Functions

  • Leadership Responsibilities
    • Directs day-to-day operations of the Zoo’s Facilities Maintenance, Security, Guest Services, on-site Membership, Housekeeping, Grounds and Horticulture departments. Oversees the Zoo’s Conservation and Education departments.
    • Sets comprehensive goals for employee and departmental performance and growth.
    • Informs and executes on organization-wide goals and strategic plan relevant to assigned areas.
    • Provides management of all Zoo operations in the absence of the CEO.
    • Develops, implements, and monitors operational policies and procedures, and is the lead person to execute strategic initiatives or newly implemented tactical operations in assigned areas.
    • Develops, monitors, and implements processes required to effectively manage the zoo’s plans for growth, and ensures that effective processes are in place so that growth/change is achieved with minimal disruption to day-to-day activities.
    • Prepares annual budgets for assigned areas and monitors expenditures.
    • Oversees internal workflows and communicates effectively across departments so that all employees have current, pertinent, job-related information.
    • Works in close partnership with the CEO and department heads to implement new initiatives.
  • Guest Experience Responsibilities
    • Leads the vision and strategy for the guest experience plan.
    • Oversees the implementation of the guest experience, on-site membership, and related programmatic experiences to ensure quality, message, and value.
    • Oversees the day-to-day performance and operations of external food and beverage and retail merchandise partners.
    • Develops and evaluates revenue-generating opportunities to maximize admissions, membership, and in-Zoo spending.
    • Works with the Director of Education and Vice President of Conservation and Research to integrates the Zoo’s guest engagement initiatives into the guest experiences.
  • Facilities Responsibilities
    • Maintain a current facility master plan linked to the overarching strategic vision of the Zoo.
    • Ensure quality ground, garden and building maintenance maintained.
    • Ensure cleanliness of all facilities.
    • Support effective and efficient operations maintenance and cleanliness.
  • Other Responsibilities
    • Ensures that all assigned operations comply with federal, state, local, and/or company policies and regulations.
    • Leads with patience, empathy, flexibility, reliability, and positivity while assigning duties and monitoring performance
    • Takes ownership of assigned teams’ engagement, motivation, morale, and participation in meeting the Zoo’s organizational goals and objectives.

How to Apply:

The Oklahoma City Zoo has retained a consulting firm, Relevant Strategies & Solutions (RS&S), to assist in identifying and reviewing qualified candidates. RS&S ( has supported the AZA community for over 30 years.  Qualified candidates must submit a PDF cover letter and resume to:

 You may also apply via the IAAPA job board if you wish however, you will be asked to provide a cover letter via the above email in order to be considered for the position if one is not included in your job board application.

The RS&S team of Rick Biddle, Managing Partner, and Thomas Biddle, Program Manager, will be working to identify the “right fit” candidates for the Oklahoma City Zoo.

If you have any questions please email Thomas Biddle at  

The Oklahoma City Zoo is an Equal Opportunity Employer as defined by the EEOC.

All correspondence received will be confidential.


Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities (KSA’s) for Position

The potential employee must have the following knowledge, skills, and abilities upon application:

 Experience Requirements: Experience equivalent to seven (7) years in a senior management level at an accredited zoo or visitor attraction.


  • Minimum Education Requirements: Bachelor’s Degree required. Advanced Degree or relevant certifications preferred
  • Proficient in Microsoft Office products
  • Proficient in or able to quickly master various work order and scheduling programs.

Skills and Abilities

  • Demonstrated proficiency in supervising and motivating staff.
  • Commitment to excellence and high standards
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills
  • Ability to work with all levels of management
  • Strong organizational, problem-solving, and analytical skills
  • Ability to manage priorities and workflow
  • Versatility, flexibility, and a willingness to work within constantly changing priorities with enthusiasm
  • Ability to work independently and as a member of various teams and committees
  • Proven leadership and business acumen
  • Proven ability to handle multiple projects and meet deadlines
  • Strong interpersonal skills.
  • Ability to deal effectively with a diversity of individuals at all organizational levels

Job Information

  • Job ID: 63739686
  • Location:
    Haddonfield, New Jersey, United States
    Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, United States
  • Position Title: Chief Operating Officer (COO)
  • Company Name For Job: Oklahoma City Zoo & Botanical Garden
  • Industry: Zoo
  • Job Function: Management
  • Job Type: 1
  • Job Duration: Indefinite
  • Min Education: BA/BS/Undergraduate
  • Min Experience: 7-10 Years

Please refer to the company's website or job descriptions to learn more about them.

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