City of Little Rock Mayor Frank Scott, Jr. and the Arkansas Zoological Foundation announced today the formation of a task force to study planning and development for the Little Rock Zoo’s future.
The task force is part of an initiative of Mayor Scott’s to improve quality of life and to Revitalize, Reimagine, and Reinvest in the War Memorial Park area.
“As one of the largest tourist attractions in the state and the only accredited zoo in Arkansas, the Little Rock Zoo is an important part of War Memorial Park and our City,” Scott said.
Task Force Members will consist of:
- Brad Cazort, Chair of the Zoo Board of Governors
- Lisa Buehler, Chair of the Arkansas Zoological Foundation
- State Senator Joyce Elliott, Vice-Chair of the Mayor’s Quality of Life Subcommittee for the Scott Script
- Kathy Webb, City Ward 3 Director and liaison to the Zoo Board of Governors
- Jessica Poynter, Chair, Generation Zoo Young Professionals
- Chad Causey, Causey Law Firm, Board Member, Arkansas Zoological Foundation
- Dr. Andrew Rogerson, Chancellor, University of Arkansas at Little Rock
- Hank Kelley, CEO/Partner, Flake & Kelley Commercial
- Tab Townsell, Executive Director, Metroplan
- Rhonna Wade, Chair, Create Little Rock
- Gretchen Hall, Executive Director, Little Rock Convention & Visitors Bureau
- Brandon Bibby, Associate AIA, WER Architects/Planners
- Nate Coulter, Director, Central Arkansas Library System
Zoo Director Susan Altrui, City Manager Bruce Moore, and Jay, Chessir, President and CEO of the Greater Little Rock Chamber of Commerce, will serve in Ex-officio roles.
The Task Force for the Zoo’s Future will review the Zoo’s current business model, help develop an action plan for future funding and also review the Zoo’s current facilities Master Plan developed in 2014 to look for new opportunities in animal habitat design, guest amenity and park design. The task force is comprised of a diverse range of individuals who offer a variety of perspectives.
Zoo consulting firm Schultz & Williams has been tapped by the Arkansas Zoological Foundation to assist with the task force. Schultz & Williams has decades-long experience working with zoos and aquariums accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums and assisting them with business planning specific to developing public/private partnerships. Dozens of zoos and aquariums have used Schultz & Williams to develop future plans for long-range financial and organizational success.