A World of Discovery - Great Lakes Zoological Society Conservation Center and Rescue - A Great Family Destination!

Who We Are

Andrea Guibord (Executive Director)


Andrea Guibord

Andrea Guibord has spent the majority of her career strengthening nonprofits with mission drivers including youth development, healthcare and the arts. She majored in business/advertising in 1990 and most recently, returned to school to focus on her true passion: environmental biology. Andrea spent more than 15 years working in managerial and executive positions for a variety of non-profit organizations. While the career path that she fell into was challenging and fulfilling, she spent all of her life yearning to work in the environmental field.

In 2010, Andrea returned to school to focus her studies on ecology and environmental biology, and in 2012, graduated with a B.S in Integrated studies with an environmental biology focus. She plans to continue on and pursue a Masters in fisheries and wildlife.

During her second career as an FSU student, she was challenged with several opportunities for growth and experience. Firstly, a part time job and an internship with a YMCA camp allowed her to delve into the inner workings of a local wetland wherein she created and implemented updated wetland programming.

Secondly, she spent a summer working for the Department of Natural Resources as an educational outreach coordinator. This experience, coupled with strategic biological studies, allowed her to further research one of her greatest passions, the current state of the Great Lakes and her tributaries and the effects of varying invasive species on this important ecosystem, particularly Asian carp of the genus Hypophthalmichthys.

Lastly, she had the tremendous opportunity to work and train under the guidance of a published professor in Ferris State's pharmaceutical research lab. Employed as part of a team who synthesized and purified norel PPAR delta/gamma agonists for Type II diabetes using solid phase synthesis, Andrea was provided with tremendous experience in chromatography, separation and TLC plates for various structures. She became the lead chromatographer, managed the lab, and trained incoming students.

An integrated degree with an ecological and environmental focus coupled with a strong background in non-profit management allows her to bring stability and experience to a fledgling and rapidly growing organization.

Guibord has experience in growing local grass roots organizations and has also regionally managed national nonprofits including City of Hope National Medical Center and the American Lung Association. Andrea is a graduate of Ferris State University.

Sara McCune (Development Assistant)


Sara McCune
Sara McCune graduated from St. Bonaventure University with a degree in journalism/mass communications and a minor in political science. She came to Ann Arbor to pursue a degree in modern Middle East and North African studies at the University of Michigan, and after graduating she landed an internship in the development department at ACCESS. After her internship ended, she began volunteering as a grant writer for the Great Lakes Zoological Society, and was hired a few months later. She has since been responsible for a variety of tasks, including grant writing, data management, event planning, volunteer coordination, and marketing.

Allison Long (Operations Associate/Staff Zoologist)


Allison Long
Allison graduated from Michigan State University with a bachelor's of science degree in Zoology, with a concentration in Ecology, Evolution and Organismal Biology. Some of her favorite subjects were vertebrate anatomy, ecology of animal behavior and genetics. During school, she worked in a veterinary research lab working with horses and studying the relationship between bone density in the foot and diseases related to lameness. While she found lab and research work to be very interesting, she had long planned to be able to use her experience as an animal enthusiast and her degree to work in the field of animal husbandry and zoo keeping.

For as long as she can remember, Allison has had various types of pets. She has kept many smaller species such as anoles, geckos, scorpions, and ball pythons as well as dogs, cats, fish and small mammals. As a child, Allison aspired to be an exotic vet and work at an exotic animal rescue. While over time her career focus has changed, she is very happy to be realizing the dream of working at a rescue and conservation center.

Allison started out with the Great Lakes Zoological Society as an animal husbandry volunteer. She soon became a part of the zoo keeper team, and has worn many job-title hats along the way. She is currently the Operations Associate and handles much of the supplies, facility and staff needs. She also works with the Curator, John Lebert, in running the adoption and surrender program, finding homes for unwanted pets and animals in need. Allison says that it is very rewarding when you find a home for an animal, and see it get to go to a good home.

Amber Faasan (Senior Animal Care Specialist)

Description coming soon.

Caleb Burden (Zoo Keeper)

Description coming soon.

Brittany Berkley (Zoo keeper)


Brittany Berkley
Brittany Berkley is working toward her Zoology degree at Schoolcraft Community College with plans to transfer to Michigan State University. Ever since she can remember, she has had the desire to be a Zoo Keeper. Brittany's deep love for all animals led her to her first zoo volunteering experience at Potter Park Zoo in Lansing and her experiences there finalized her decision to pursue a career in Zoology. At Potter Park she was able to work with each keeper and gained hands on experience with felines, canines, birds, reptiles, horses, saltwater fish, bears, pandas and many other species. Brittany hopes to specialize in in felines, canines and reptiles. Brittany transferred her knowledge and passion here to the Great Lakes Zoological Society as a volunteer, and lends her wonderful spirit to the staff and the animals that she cares for so deeply. Brittany "feels blessed to have been given a permanent position as a cashier and later a zookeeper"

In addition to her experience in a zoo environment, she has also worked as a camp counselor for VBS and YMCA Storer Camps. Brittany took on the role of zoo camp counselor here at GLZS in 2013 and made a great impact on the campers and the staff. Brittany's hard work and dedication to her passion are an asset to our rescue and education efforts.

One of Brittany's fondest memories was the summer after she finished her fifth grade year: she participated in a two week trip to Scotland and England with People to People Student Ambassador Programs. Says Brittany: This was a life changing experience that allowed me to experience a new culture and new wildlife!

Bethany Blease (Educational Coordinator)


Bethany Blease
Bethany Blease graduated Magna Cum Laude from Michigan Technological University with a bachelor's of science in Applied Ecology and Environmental Science. While at Michigan Tech, she enjoyed classes such as wildlife habitat, herpetology, biological oceanography, natural resource policy, and conservation biology. During her time as a student Bethany worked as a Forestry Canopy Technician. This involved climbing heights up to 70ft to access the tree canopy. The research that she was working on helped to determine how height and water potential affect leaf morphology. Bethany also worked as a laboratory analyst on a separate research project. This project involved using gas chromatography in order to determine levels of methane and nitrogen at test sites. No matter the type of research Bethany has always loved challenging herself to learn and discover new things.

Bethany is incredibly passionate about ecology and zoology education. She won first place at the World Water Day research poster competition for her research on the impact of Human Noise Pollution on marine animals. During her time as the teaching assistant for Biometrics, she realized how much she enjoys teaching others. She strives to be able to teach people about wildlife, conservation, and ecosystem ecology in a fun and creative ways.

After graduating Bethany moved to the Ann Arbor area and started her work at the Great Lakes Zoological Society. She is very excited to be working with the animals and a great team of people. Her favorite part of work is seeing all of the new faces coming in each day. In her eyes there is nothing better than spending your day with people who are passionate about animals and learning.

Board of Directors

Tom Titus


Tom Titus
Tom Titus is a CPA and manager at Pietrasiuk, Kelley & Kelley, P.C. Tom has more than 20 years of experience in the field, and focuses on non-profit organizations, business entities, individual tax returns and accounting services. Tom is a 1993 graduate of Michigan State University and holds a B.S. in accounting. Tom has been associated with the zoo since its inception with and has annually prepared the zoo taxes. Tom is married with three children and enjoys running, mountain biking and recently yoga. Tom looks forward to watching the zoo flourish and loves to bring his children in to visit as often as he can. The staff all look forward to visits from the youngest of the Titus clan and enjoy watching their eyes light up at each visit.

Stacey Gamblin


Stacey Gamblin
Stacey Gamblin is a licensed Sales Agent with Real Estate One Saline and has more than 10 years experience in real estate and management, combined.

Stacey holds a B.A. in Hospitality/Tourism Management from Grand Valley State University with an emphasis on Food Service.

Stacey brings a range of board experience to the Great Lakes Zoological Society. She is a second year board member for the Washtenaw County Consortium on Aging. Additionally, she has served two consecutive years on the board of the Saline Varsity Blues performing arts group in support of her daughter's many talents.

Stacey brings a vibrancy and sense of community to the board and is excited to assist with the grass roots efforts of this community conservation and education effort.

Nick Coquillard


Nick Coquillard
Nick Coquillard currently helps lead the Inter-Cooperative Council (ICC) as General Manager and brings almost 20 years of student housing and nonprofit management experience to the cooperative movement and the GLZS. He sought out being a board member as he believes in the zoo's mission and vision and its vital role as a unique educational resource and as an imperative rescue option for animals (and owners) in need.

As General Manager, Nick is the chief administrative officer responsible for overseeing the operational, financial and legal affairs of the corporation. Nick also serves as the human resources officer including hiring and supervision of all ICC staff. Nick's philosophy is to work together with staff to constantly grow as leaders and work as a cooperative team in support of the ICC's mission, vision and principles. He provides leadership in maintaining a productive, cost-effective, safe and legal workplace. He guides and advises the Board of Directors and its committees. It is his goal to work in full partnership with the members, alumni and the greater community to help the ICC be the beacon for student housing cooperatives. Nick also if the founder of Notevole, LLC, a new, developing business merging positive youth development and sports and recreation.

Shelley Stoll


Shelley Stoll
Shelley Stoll developed a sense of wonder for the natural world at an early age, spending her free days exploring the woods and ponds around her home. After obtaining a B.S, in biology from the University of Michigan and gaining experience at a zoo, nature center, and the UM Exhibit museum, she pursued a master's in public health and established a career as a senior project manager in public health research. While her public health work is meaningful and rewarding, she hopes to give energy and time to her other passion, environmental education, by serving on the board of the GLZS.

Steve Olsen

Casey Meyer

Fred Zuidveld

Jerry Adams

Chad Marchant

Scientific Advisory Board

David Wooten


David A. Wooten
David is a full-time professor in the biology department at Washtenaw Community College in Ann Arbor, MI. He teaches General Biology, Zoology, Biological Field Study, and Human Anatomy & Physiology. David has been involved in herpetoculture since a young age and has over a decade of experience in the retail pet trade. He has academically researched and published studies on venomous snakes, turtles, crocodilians, reptilian ecology, and animal behavior. He was an interpretive guide at the Chippewa Nature Center, Midland, MI where he taught environmental education programs to school groups and adults. He received his BS and MS from Central Michigan University in Biology/Chemistry, and attended the University of Florida for his doctoral work in Zoology. During his graduate work, David found his niche in teaching and withdrew from the research program to return to Michigan and pursue college teaching. His pedagogy incorporates the teaching and application of current research findings, behavioral ecology, and conservation into a critical-thinking college classroom for future biologists.

Cara Shillington

Dr. Shillington received her B.S. and M.S degrees from Washington State University, and she received her Ph.D. from Oklahoma State University in 2001. Currently an Associate Professor at Eastern Michigan University Dr. Shillington takes an integrative, field-based, evolutionary approach to studying the physiological ecology of ectothermic organisms, especially arachnids and arthropods (but also including reptiles and amphibians). Her research concerns a variety of interactions between animals and their environments, including ecological energetics, behavioral ecology, thermoregulatory physiology and thermal ecology. Her research at this time centers on potentially adaptive whole-animal functions as expressed in the context of natural habitats including intra- and intersexual variation in energetics of tarantulas, and thermal preferences of a variety of organisms. Other areas of interest include studies of animal behavior, particularly sexual strategies and mating behavior, as well as feeding behaviors and preferences.

Dr. Gretchen Hui, DVM (Dr. Hui provides veterinary care to all the Center's animals)


Dr. Gretchen Hui, DVM
Dr. Hui graduated from MSU with her Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine in May 2003. Before joining Veterinary Medical Center in May 2009 she worked at a small and exotic animal practice in Ann Arbor for six years. During her time at MSU she gained knowledge about exotic pet medicine and surgery through her work at other universities, zoos, wildlife rehabilitation centers, and by participating in toxicology research with a variety of birds in Uganda. When she is not at her clinic or the conservation center she enjoys spending time with her husband, friends, and trying to keep up with her young daughter and son. The rest of her family includes a two mixed breed dogs, two cats, and a turtle that have all come from various rescue groups in the surrounding area. Her other hobbies include volleyball, hiking, rollerblading, watching college sports, yoga/Pilates, and just about anything that will allow her to be outdoors.

Janella M. Poch


Janella M. Poch
Janella M. Poch is a Licensed Veterinary Technician working here in Ann Arbor for Affordable Veterinary Services. She graduated from Michigan State University in 2003 with a B.S. in veterinary technology. Of special interest to her during this time, was laboratory medicine and emergency and critical care medicine. During school she loved working with the public on client education and proper husbandry, a subject that she continues to be passionate about. Janella has provided multiple demonstrations and participated in many classes to stay current on this topic.

Janella is a professional dog trainer. She teaches dog training classes in obedience and rally obedience. She loves showing her dogs and has won multiple awards in agility, obedience, and rally obedience. One of her dogs is a registered therapy dog and, along with Janella, will often visit nursing homes, mental health facilities, and reading programs for the kids

As a child Janella grew up with a variety of pets. She has always had dogs, cats, rabbits, turtles, fish, and many other small mammals. It wasn't until April of 2013 that her interest in reptiles really grew. She rescued a Chinese Water Dragon and that led her to a whole new world of discovery with reptiles. She has taken a very special interest in the Bearded Dragon and Chinese Water Dragon and takes much pride trying to learn all she can about them. Janella has a strong passion for learning more about multiple reptile species. Her goal is to educate the public and help them learn the proper husbandry for all reptiles.

Her other hobbies include spending time with her family and friends, walking/hiking her dogs, handling her two lizards, being outdoors, reading, and watching a good movie.

Brian McEwen

Brian brings both entomology and herpetology expertise to the GLZS. Brian has experience with honey bees, mantids, and rescue and rehab of indigenous turtles.


Founders

The Great Lakes Zoological Society was founded by Mark and Jane Creswell in 2008 after becoming aware of the number of reptile and amphibian pets that were surrendered or improperly cared for. After several years of caring for a large number of unwanted pets, the couple opened the World of Discovery in 2011. Their goal was to educate the community by promoting conservation and coexisting with wildlife while serving as a rescue and rehabilitation center for reptiles and amphibians.