Awards and Recognition (as of 12/1/19)

Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) Awards (competitive)
  • 2018 – AZA Education Award – Nature StartTM – Top Honor
  • 2016 – AZA Angela Peterson Excellence in Diversity Award Top Honors
  • 2016 – AZA Significant Achievement Education Award
  • Top Honors for Innovation -- AZA 2016 Award for Exhibit Design (Hamill Family Wild Encounters)
  • 2015 – AZA Significant Achievement Award in Volunteer Engagement
  • 2015 – American Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) Quarter Century Award recognizing Brookfield Zoo’s commitment to maintaining the highest standards in animal care, welfare, management, veterinary care, conservation, education, staffing, facilities, safety, guest services, dedication to best modern zoological practices and philosophies, and more. 
  • 2015 AZA Top Honors in International Conservation for AZA Zoos Giving a Voice to the Sahara: Sahara Conservation Fund as a model for a zoo-driven conservation movement in collaboration with St. Louis Zoo and others
  • 2013 AZA Top Honor Award for Angela Peterson Excellence in Diversity Award
  • 2012 AZA Top Honor Award for Excellence in Marketing for the “Real Fan Days” marketing campaign
  • 2012 AZA Significant Achievement award for Excellence in Education for the “Centers for Science Excellence” program
  • 2011 AZA Award for Significant Achievement in Education for Nature Start:  Early Childhood Nature Program
  • 2011 AZA Award for Significant Achievement in Marketing for Go Eye to Eye at Great Bear Wilderness
  • 2010 AZA North American Conservation Award for our Sarasota Dolphin Research Program
  • 2009 AZA Education Award for the Levels of Engagement program
  • 2008 AZA Edward H. Bean Award for the Goeldi’s monkey program
  • 2005 AZA Education Significant Achievement Award for Every Student is a Scientist
  • 2003 AZA Education Award for “To Save a Species: Managing a Captive Population Program
  • 2001 AZA Significant Achievement Award for Betampona Ruffed Lemur release and conservation program
  • 2001 AZA Significant Achievement Award for long-term propagation and management of the Okapi
  • 1999 AZA Edward H. Bean Award for the long-term propagation of Tanagers
  • 1997 American Zoos and Aquarium (AZA) recognition of the Zoo Adventure Passport (ZAP) Program
  • 1997 AZA Significant Achievement Award for “The Swamp:  The Wonders of Our Wetlands” exhibit
  • 1994 AZA Significant Achievement Award for “Habitat Africa: Phase 1” exhibit
  • 1989 AZA Significant Achievement Award for propagation of Goeldi’s monkey
  • 1988 AZA Zoo Biology Recognition Award
  • 1981 AZA Significant Achievement Award for artificial insemination of Lowland Gorilla
  • 1979 AZA Significant Achievement Award for its conservation program of Goeldi’s monkeys
  • 1975 AZA Exhibit Achievement Award – “Saharan Predator” Exhibit
  • 1974 AZA Edward H. Bean Award for the hatching of Hinge-back Tortoise
  • 1970 AZA Edward H. Bean Award for the Green Crested Basilisk
  • 1966 AZA Edward H. Bean Award for the most notable birth of Phillipine Tarsier
  • 1961 AZA Citation for remarkable achievement for the birth of Dall sheep
  • 1959 AZA Citation for remarkable achievement – 1st birth of Okapi in the New World
Animal Care, Exhibitry, Education and Conservation Achievement Awards
  • 2019 recognition by the Species Survival Commission of the International Union for Conservation
  • 2018 – Humane Recertification by the American Humane Association
  • 2016 – National Association for Interpretation Media Awards, 2nd Place, CZS and the Portico Group, Wayside Exhibits, for Hamill Family Wild Encounters
  • 2016 – Humane certified by the American Humane Association
  • 2013 – Camp Excellence Award from the Illinois Chapter of the American Camp Association
  • 2012 – Certified Nature Explore Classroom (Hamill Family Play Zoo)
  • 2009 – Illinois Recycling Association Award
  • Illinois Association of Museums Platinum Anniversary Award
  • AZA Recognition Award for leadership and continued support of the AZA Population Management Center
  • 1998 – The Munson Aquatic Conservation Exhibitry Award for “The Living Coast” exhibit
  • 1995 – Outstanding Recycling Award – Illinois Recycling Association
  • 1993 – U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Certificate of Recognition in appreciation of outstanding contributions to America’s natural and cultural resources
  • 1987 – AZA Propagator’s Certificate in recognition of sustained captive breeding of Reticulated Giraffe
  • 1987 – AZA Propagator’s Certificate in recognition of sustained captive breeding of Grant’s Zebra
  • 1986 – AZA Propagator’s Certificate in recognition of sustained captive breeding of Golden Lion Tamarin
  • 1985 – AZA Propagator’s Certificate in recognition of sustained captive breeding of Siberian Ibex
  • 1984 – AZA Propagator’s Certificate in recognition of sustained captive breeding of Wisent
  • 1982 – AZA Propagator’s Certificate in recognition of sustained captive breeding of Goeldi’s Monkey
  • 1980 – AZA Propagator’s Certificate in recognition of sustained captive breeding of Beisa Oryx
  • 1980 – AZA Propagator’s Certificate in recognition of sustained captive breeding of Sitatunga
  • 1980 – AZA Propagator’s Certificate in recognition of sustained captive breeding of Addax
  • 1980 – AZA Propagator’s Certificate in recognition of sustained captive breeding of Goeldi’s Monkey
Employer and Business Awards
  • 2019 – Chicago High School for Agricultural Sciences – Partner Award
  • 2018 – Indeed.com, Brookfield Zoo rated #2 Best Places to Work in Chicago
  • 2018 – Chicago United Five Forward 20/20
  • 2018 – ProjectSearch partner award from Helping Hands
  • 2017 – Readers’ Choice Top 10 Best travel award
  • 2017 – Community Partner Award from Mary Crane Centers (NatureStart)
  • 2016 – Chicago Flower & Garden Show Official Builder
  • 2015 – Illinois – Chicago Best of Wedding Venues presented by The Knot Magazine
  • 2015 – West Suburban Chamber of Commerce Business of the Year Award
  • 2014 – ICED Non-profit Award presented by the Interagency Committee on Employees with Disabilities for outstanding achievements in making Brookfield Zoo accessible
  • 2012 – Tripadvisor Certificate of Excellence
  • 2012 – Diversity Spirit Achievement Award presented by The Diversity Recruiters Network and City Career Fair Productions
  • 2011 – LaGrange Area District Special Education (LADSE) Award for the Good Works Program
  • 2009 – Small Business Commerce Association (SBCA) Best of Business Award (zoological garden category)
  • Westside Ministers’ Coalition – Best Employer Award – 2009
  • 2009 – LaGrange Area District Special Education (LADSE) Award
  • 2009 – Recycling Hero Award – Illinois Recycling Association
  • 2009 – Westside Jobs Collaborative and Business Human Resource Center Employer of the Year
  • Oak Park and River Forest High School Work Experience Program 2008-2009 (for employment of people with disabilities)
  • 2008 – Illinois Department of Human Services – Distinguished Service Award (for employment of people with disabilities)
  • 2008 – Westside Ministers’ Coalition – Best Employer Award
  • 2008 – Westside Job Collaborative and Business and Human Resource Center – Employer of the Year
  • West Cook County Solid Waste Agency - Outstanding Business/Workplace Waste Reduction and Recycling Award
  • 2005 – LaGrange Area District Special Education (LADSE) Award for Students Futures Now
  • 2005 – Aspire Community Partnership Award
  • 2004 – LaGrange Area District Special Education (LADSE) award for Good Works Program
  • 2009  – Kentico Website of the Year Award
  • 2000-2003 – LaGrange Area District Special Education (LADSE) Vocational Alliance Autism Project recognition
Community and Other Awards
  • 2019 National Medal for Museum Service finalist, presented by the Institute for Museum and Library Services
  • 2015 – Special Education Parks & Recreation (SEASPAR) Community Partner Award
  • 2011 – Hamill Family Play Zoo at Brookfield Zoo recognized by Chicago Magazine as the Best of Chicago 2011 for Kids
  • 2011 – Recognized by Chicago Magazine as one of the Best 80 Places in Chicago
  • 2009 – Community Partner of the Year from the Fuller Park Neighborhood Development Corporation
  • 2009 – Nickelodeon's Parents' Picks Award – Best Day Camp
  • 2009 – Illinois Recycling Association Recycler of the Year Award
  • 2007 – National Medal for Museum Service, presented by the Institute for Museum and Library Services at the White House January, 2008
  • 2005 – Partner for Clean Air Appreciation Award
  • 1999 – American Heart Associate WALK Appreciation Award
  • 1999-2000 – HSHS Deaf & Hard of Hearing Program Appreciation Award
  • 1997 – American Heart Association Recognition Award
  • LaGrange Area District Special Education (LADSE)– Essential Piece Appreciation recognition
  • Governor Jim Edgar recognition - Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy Visionary Leadership in Nurturing the Abilities of Young Researchers Through Support of Students and Their Mentors
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