San Diego, California - A crowd of more than 200 cheered as San Diego Zoo Global President/CEO Douglas G. Myers this week announced the launch of the organization’s new publishing division—San Diego Zoo Global Press. The division, one of the few zoological publishing subsidiaries in the world, is dedicated to creating and distributing a new line of books for readers of all ages and backgrounds, designed to share conservation success stories, provide insight into San Diego Zoo Global’s past, present and future, and inspire multiple generations to care about the natural world and conservation.
“Our goal for San Diego Zoo Global Press is to ignite a passion for wildlife in children and adults when they read the books,” said Myers. “With more than 100 years of stories to share, we hope our books will motivate people to care about animals and our environment, and encourage them to take an active role in the fight to end extinction.”
To kick off this unique endeavor, San Diego Zoo Global Press has published a trio of fascinating children’s books this year as part of the San Diego Zoo Kids Hope and Inspiration Series. These books—Karen’s Heart: The True Story of a Brave Baby Orangutan, Fabulous Floyd: The True Story of a Flamingo Who Never Gave Up and Ruuxa & Raina: A Cheetah and Dog’s True Story of Friendship and Miracles—tell heartwarming tales about struggles that all of these animals faced early in their lives, and how dedicated animal care staff provided lifesaving treatments that afforded the animals the opportunity to thrive. Also included in the first round of published titles are a series of books geared toward adults, covering both business and conservation-related subjects—including
The Call: The Strategic Plan that Empowered San Diego Zoo Global to Lead the Fight Against Extinction, by Beth Branning, and Upside-Down Leadership:
A Zoo Veterinarian’s Journey to Becoming a Servant Leader, by Don Janssen, DVM
San Diego Zoo Global is partnering with specialty publisher Southwestern Publishing Group, which oversees the production and distribution of each book. The books are currently being sold in retail stores at the San Diego Zoo and the San Diego Zoo Safari Park and online at ShopZoo.com. In late Fall, books and stuffed animals will be sold through other zoos, children's hospitals and specialty retailers associated with San Diego Zoo Global programs. For the holidays, the books will be available through traditional book retailers such as Barnes & Noble and Amazon.
“San Diego Zoo Global Press is in its infancy, with our first five books published in 2018, but we have a multitude of books in the works that will debut in 2019 and beyond,” said Georgeanne Irvine, director of corporate publishing for San Diego Zoo Global and author of the first three books in the Hope and Inspiration Series. “Our plan calls for books that cover a wide range of subjects, from children's nonfiction, illustrated, and board books to engaging conservation memoirs and biographies, behind-the-scenes stories and leadership books.”
Irvine said 2019 will be a big year for the San Diego Zoo Global Press, as six books will debut—including The Remarkable Rise of Belle Benchley, which tells the fascinating story of the world’s first female zoo director, and the many struggles she faced leading the young San Diego Zoo in a male-dominated society.
“San Diego Zoo Global Press is off to a great start and is on track to create a multitude of books every year, for both children and adults,” said Irvine.
Bringing species back from the brink of extinction is the goal of San Diego Zoo Global. As a leader in conservation, the work of San Diego Zoo Global includes on-site wildlife conservation efforts (representing both plants and animals) at the San Diego Zoo, San Diego Zoo Safari Park, and San Diego Zoo Institute for Conservation Research, as well as international field programs on six continents. The work of these entities is inspiring children through the San Diego Zoo Kids network, reaching out through the internet and in children’s hospitals nationwide. The work of San Diego Zoo Global is made possible by the San Diego Zoo Global Wildlife Conservancy and is supported in part by the Foundation of San Diego Zoo Global.