Leadership

 

EXECUTIVE LEADERSHIP TEAM

Joe Couceiro
President/CEO

Joseph A. Couceiro currently serves as President and Chief Executive Officer of ZooTampa at Lowry Park. Couceiro had been the Vice President of Marketing & Communications at the Chicago Zoological Society, which manages Brookfield Zoo. Couceiro has more than 30 years of strategic marketing and senior leadership experience at world-renowned conservation organizations. Before joining the Chicago Zoological Society in 2012, Couceiro worked for Busch Entertainment Corporation (BEC), a subsidiary of Anheuser-Busch, successively taking on progressively more challenging senior leadership roles during a notable 20-year career. Couceiro’s background includes serving as Vice President of Marketing for Busch Gardens Tampa Bay from 2000–2003. Subsequently he was promoted to Vice President of Marketing for all five BEC parks in Florida, including SeaWorld, Discovery Cove, Aquatica, Busch Gardens and Adventure Island. In 2006, he rose to the top marketing position at BEC as Chief Marketing Officer and Executive VP. In that role Couceiro was responsible for the worldwide marketing and sales for all ten SeaWorld/Busch Gardens attractions.

View Bio

Kristy Chase-Tozer
Sr. VP/Chief Marketing Officer

Upon graduating from the University of Florida with a degree in Recreation, Parks and Tourism, Kristy moved to Orlando to pursue a tourism career in one of the greatest destinations in the world. She completed an extended internship with “Visit Orlando” which led her to her first professional position with SeaWorld Orlando. Kristy eventually moved from Orlando to Tampa where she spent another 11 years with Busch Gardens Tampa Bay. Through her 20-year career with SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment, Kristy had the exceptional opportunity to launch over a dozen attractions and two brand-new theme parks. Kristy’s more distinguished experience came from her long tenure in event strategy and production for the SEA parks in Florida. Eventually, Kristy became a visionary and strategist with oversight of consumer-facing marketing programs for Busch Gardens and Adventure Island in Tampa. In addition to pricing, product development and merchandising, she was accountable for membership and loyalty programs, promotions and consumer event strategies. In 2014, Kristy’s career path took a new direction when she left SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment and to introduce Kokua Marketing - a boutique marketing consultancy - designed to service the hospitality industry. After spending nearly a year providing contract marketing support for Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo, Kristy joined the team full-time in October 2015.

View Bio

Mark Haney
Sr. VP/Chief Advancement Officer

In November 2015 Mark Haney was named Sr. VP, Chief Advancement Officer (CAO) for ZooTampa at Lowry Park. Mark previously served as the Vice President of Advancement at The Florida Aquarium for seven years, where he led and successfully concluded the Aquarium’s $15 million capital campaign. Prior to the Florida Aquarium, Mark served as the Director of Individual and Corporate Giving at Miami MetroZoo (now Zoo Miami). He is a long time member of AZA and fully embraces the mission of zoos and aquariums. In his new role as CAO and as a member of the Executive Leadership Team, Mark will oversee all aspects of philanthropic development, grant management, government affairs, business relations and sponsorships.

View Bio

Elizabeth Hennig
Sr. VP/Chief Financial Officer

Since 2001, Elizabeth Hennig has held positions with steadily increasing levels of responsibility at ZooTampa at Lowry Park in the offices of accounting, finance, development, administration, and human resources. She has expanded her organizational understanding by playing a key role in organizational restructuring and development, strategic planning, compliance, risk management, facility project management, government affairs, Board relations, budget development, and financial management. In 2006, Elizabeth earned certification from the Human Resource Certification Institute as a Professional in Human Resources. After completing an MBA at the University of South Florida in 2008, Elizabeth was promoted to the position of Director of Administration. Elizabeth currently serves as Sr. VP, Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of the Lowry Park Zoological Society and is a member of the Executive Leadership Team responsible for leading business improvement initiatives Elizabeth was named Tampa Bay Business Journal’s CFO of the Year in the nonprofit category in 2012 and is an alumnus of the Leadership Tampa program, Class of 2013.

View Bio

Larry Killmar - PhD
Sr. VP/Chief Zoological Officer

Dr. Larry Killmar came to ZooTampa at Lowry Park in 2007 with nearly 40 years of zoological experience. He holds a PhD in Business Administration and an MBA from California Coast University. Dr. Killmar is widely published in animal care and management and is a sought-after instructor on Collections Management Techniques and Functions of Animal Care Staff. He is Chairperson, Coordinator, or a member of numerous Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) Species Survival Plans (SSP), and chaired a task force on management techniques, treatment, and handling procedures of captive elephants in North America. He was a member of AZA’s Trends Task Force in 2004, is currently a member of the AZA Wildlife Conservation and Management Committee and is President of the Florida Association of Zoos and Aquariums. He began his career at the Zoological Society of San Diego (ZSSD), rising from buildings and grounds attendant to Deputy Director of Collections. Dr. Killmar played a key role in positioning ZSSD as a world conservation leader by expanding its on-site conservation program into the field. In 2003, he managed the importation of 11 African elephants from Swaziland, including 4 males and 7 females, all of whom have now calved with the birth of 2 females at Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo in 2012 and 2013. In 2010, he accepted the American Federation of Aviculture “Avy Award” for Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo for its first hatching in North America of the African shoebill. Dr. Killmar manages all aspects of the Zoo’s animal science and conservation administration and operations. Additionally he serves as spokesperson and voice of authority on related media issues. In 2015, Dr Killmar was promoted to Sr. VP, Chief Zoological Officer (CZO) and his role ​expanded as a member of the Executive Leadership Team to also oversee the Zoo’s education initiatives and serve as zoo director.

View Bio

John Muller
Sr. VP/Chief Operating Officer

In October 2016 John Muller assumed the role of Sr. VP, Chief Operating Officer for ZooTampa at Lowry. John previously served as Sr. VP Operations and Engineering at the Florida Aquarium and prior to that has held various operational leadership and general management positions both in the U.S. and also in Spain. John is a register professional engineer and has managed large capital projects in hospitality, attraction, and manufacturing industries. In his new role as COO John will oversee the Park Operations, Guest Engagement & Events, Facilities, and Informational Technology.

View Bio

MANAGEMENT TEAM

  • Ray L. Ball, DVM, Vice President of Medical Sciences, Senior Veterinarian
  • Rhonda Candreva, Executive Assistant to the CEO
  • Michelle Coleman, Vice President of Human Resources
  • Cheryl Larsen, Vice President of Business Analytics
  • Chris Massaro, General Curator
  • Jennifer McLachlan, Vice President of Education
  • Lee Ann Rottman, Vice President of Conservation
  • Kim Spencer, Park General Manager

BOARD OF TRUSTEES

THE LOWRY PARK ZOOLOGICAL SOCIETY OF TAMPA, INC.

Executive Committee

  • Marylou Bailey, Board Chair
  • Marty Miller, Vice Chair, Marketing Committee Chair
  • Heather Jordan-Holmes,  Secretary
  • Dan Honegger, Immediate Past Board Chair, Treasurer & Finance Committee Chair
  • Michael Babb, Strategic Vision Committee Chair
  • Sean Butler, Compensation Committee Chair
  • Casey Cathey
  • Santiago Corrada
  • Laura Farrior, Nominating & Governance Chair
  • Curt Harbsmeier, Government Affairs Committee Chair
  • Bob Rasmussen, Past Board Chair
  • Steve Stagg, Audit Committee Chair

Board

  • Leah Bergoffen
  • Frank Busot
  • Sandy Callahan
  • Councilwoman Yolie Capin
  • Nelson Castellano
  • Joseph V. Chillura
  • Commissioner Ken Hagan
  • Sally Harris
  • Shawn Harrison
  • Hunt James
  • Jenny Jones
  • Carl Lindell, Jr.
  • Sonya Little
  • Devanand Mangar, MD
  • Governor Bob Martinez
  • John Medaska
  • Dennis Rogero
  • David Seldin
  • Representative Ross Spano
  • Catherine Lowry Straz (Past Board Chair)
  • Robert Thomas (Past Board Chair)
  • Ryan Toth
  • Carlton Ward, Jr.
  • Todd Wickner
  • State Senator Dana Young
  • Randy Zavertnik

Lifetime Honorary Members

  • Sally Lowry Baldwin (dec)
  • Mrs. Mason Lykes (dec)

FOUNDATION

  • Lowry Baldwin, Chair
  • Elizabeth Fowler, Secretary
  • Dick Stohler, Treasurer
  • Liz Dimmitt, Director
  • Bet Snyder, Director

The ZooTampa Endowment Foundation exists to ensure excellence in conservation and education programs, and meaningful recreational experiences with wildlife accessible to everyone. We also have a community of generous donors who support the endowment by:

  • Contributing an outright gift of cash or securities
  • Making a pledge, typically fulfilled over 1 to 3 years
  • Donating stock or other appreciated property
  • Providing a long-range contribution through a wide variety of estate plans to name a fund
  • Naming ZooTampa at Lowry Park in their will, as the beneficiary of life insurance, as part of a trust, or in their Individual Retirement Accounts

For more information, please click here.