The 101-year old Phillips Park Zoo in Aurora recently hired zoologist Margaret Bowen to become zoo manager, utilizing close to two decades of experience in the field of animal care at clinics and zoos across the nation.
Previously, Bowen worked as a vet tech at Rockford’s Animal Medical Clinic; as client care manager for Bethany Animal Hospital in Sycamore; and as an animal keeper and lead trainer at Kangaroo Conservation Center in Dawsonville, Georgia.
With a bachelor’s in zoology from Oswego State University in New York and a specialized associate's degree in zoo animal science technology from the Gainesville, Florida-based Santa Fe Community College Teaching Zoo, Bowen expressed enthusiasm for her new domain.
"I am excited about being able to work with such a great team at Phillips Park Zoo," Bowen said. "The zookeepers here have great passion and dedication for the work they do and I think we all can really look forward to a great future for this historic zoo."
While working for the Great Bend-Brit Spaugh Zoo in Great Bend, Kansas, Bowen initiated an accreditation process by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, a worldwide organization.
Bowen said she looks forward to increasing the zoo’s population while also enhancing its education and conservation initiatives.