Archive: Detroit Zoological Society Named Best-Managed Nonprofit

December 7, 2015

ROYAL OAK, Mich., 

The Detroit Zoological Society (DZS) has been named the 2015 Best-Managed Nonprofit by Crain’s Detroit Business, winning the publication’s top honor for exceptional mission-driven management practices.

Consideration for the 2015 contest was given to 501(c)(3) organizations in Wayne, Oakland, Macomb, Washtenaw and Livingston counties for how they are addressing social, political or technological trends. The award recognizes the DZS Greenprint, a strategic plan that refines and improves daily practices and facilities at the Detroit Zoo and Belle Isle Nature Zoo, develops new policies and programs, and improves green literacy and action in the community.

“It’s an honor to be named the best-managed nonprofit in southeast Michigan, and to be recognized for an initiative that is so near and dear to the staff and board,” said Ron Kagan, Detroit Zoological Society executive director and CEO.

Among the key Greenprint initiatives that came to fruition in 2015 is the elimination of bottled water at Detroit Zoo concessions, keeping more than 60,000 single-used bottled water containers out of landfills annually. The DZS also announced it is building an anaerobic digester – the first in Michigan and the only zoo-based system of its kind – that will annually convert 400 tons of animal waste into a renewable energy source to help power the Zoo’s animal hospital.

“To expand its green efforts and influence others to live and operate in more sustainable ways, the zoo has engaged its board and its staff, collaborated with other organizations and identified dedicated funding for green projects to ensure no impact to existing programs,” Crain’s reported in its Dec. 7, 2015 edition announcing the award.

Also in recognition of its environmental leadership, the DZS was honored with the 2015 Green Award by the Association of Zoos & Aquariums, designating the Detroit Zoo the greenest zoo in America.