The Sacramento Zoological Society Board of Trustees is pleased to announce that Jason Jacobs has been selected as the new director and chief executive officer of the Sacramento Zoo. Jacobs will assume the position in early January 2018.
“The Sacramento Zoological Society chose Jason from among 38 prospects and five finalists. We are impressed with his track record at some of the leading zoos in America, and especially in what he has accomplished in Tucson,” said Jeff Raimundo, President of the Sacramento Zoological Society’s board of trustees. “Most important, he clearly shares our vision for reimagining the future Sacramento Zoo, providing the best possible environment for the animals in our care, a focus on animal conservation in the wild, and creating new and exciting experiences for our half-million visitors a year.”
Jacobs, the current director of the Reid Park Zoo in Tucson, Arizona, has been involved in zoos for most of his life and has worked in almost every department at a zoo during the span of his career. He grew up visiting Zoo Miami in Florida where he fell in love with animals. During his grade school years, he interned, volunteered, and ran education programs at Zoo Miami. Jacobs received dual bachelors degrees in environmental science and English from Florida International University. Highlights of his career include a year at Walt Disney’s Animal Kingdom, deputy director at the Potawatomi Zoo in South Bend, Indiana, director of development and marketing at the Los Angeles Zoo, and for the last 4.5 years, director of the Reid Park Zoo.
Jacob’s zoo experience, passion, and close family ties to northern California make an excellent fit for the position with all the tools to be successful and a desire to set roots down in the area. As the new director/CEO of the Sacramento Zoo he plans to build a stronger relationship between the zoo and the Sacramento community while keeping the zoo a partner in global animal conservation activities. In his role, he will oversee 108 employees, a collection of more than 500 animals on 14-acres, as well as the zoo’s robust education and international conservation programs. He will also spearhead the reimagined Sacramento Zoo by using the zoo’s master plan as a guide map for building the Sacramento Zoo of the future and telling the unique story of each individual animal. The zoo director is an employee of and reports to the Sacramento Zoological Society’s board of trustees, which consists of 20 members from throughout the Sacramento region.