Press Room

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Media FAQs

If you are actively working on a story, the Zoo will waive your admission fee. Contact our Director of Public Relations, Julia McHugh, via email or phone: (805) 569-3303. Alternatively, contact our Director of Marketing, Dean Noble via email or phone: (805) 962-5339, ext. 116.

Julia McHugh, Director of Public Relations: (805) 569-3303 or email your request.

We have a variety of visuals for use by press. For photos, please see below. Please email Julia McHugh, Director of Public Relations or email Dean Noble, Director of Marketing.

We do allow commercial shooting at the Zoo, and we do charge a fee. Fees are determined on a case-by-case basis; see our Filming Guidelines policy. For more information, please email us.

We appreciate your interest in the Zoo! Due to the high number of requests, we can only make tours and staff available for professional press. But please feel free to make use of the information on this website for your project.

Only photographers on professional assignment are allowed free admission, but students may take photos of the animals for project use only; for resale or professional uses, please see our Filming Guidelines. Students must pay admission, unless you are a student at the Brooks Institute. For Brooks Institute students, your instructors may have day passes available; please contact them directly to inquire.

Staff Bios

Chief Executive Officer


BS degree, Environmental Studies, Principia College; Elsah, Illinois

MS degree, Natural Resource Management, University of Michigan; Ann Arbor, Michigan

SB Zoo History:

Joined Zoo staff in 1998 as CEO/Director

AZA Activities:

Member since 1984

Conservation Education Committee

Roadside Zoo Task Force

Wildlife Conservation & Management Committee

Member Ethics Board

Other Activities:

Board Vice President, California Association of Zoos & Aquariums (CAZA)

Board President, California Association of Museums (CAM)

Member Rotary Club of Santa Barbara

Member Advisory Committee, Endangered Species Update (University of Michigan)

Former Member Adult Education Curriculum Advisory Committee, Santa Barbara Community College

Prior Experience:

Indianapolis Zoo, Vice President for Science & Program Development

World Wildlife Fund, Director of Public Programs/Senior Fellow

Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund, Executive Director

Zoo Atlanta, Education Curator

Kansas City Zoo, Director of Public Relations

University of Michigan, School of Natural Resources & Environment, Instructor/Administrator

  • Graduated 1991 UCSB
  • Member of AZA glee club
  • Loves giraffes

Press Photos

All the sample images below are available as digital files for use with articles about the Santa Barbara Zoo. Digital files can be provided by email or FTP site as jpegs suitable for Web use (72 dpi), or for newspaper or magazine/book use (300 dpi).

To request images: Email Julia McHugh, Public Relations Director.

Please include the name of your publication, the ID numbers for the images you would like to receive, the format (size/resolution of file you need), and delivery option (email or FTP site). We will determine if your request meets our guidelines and respond to your email promptly.