2016 marks the 100 Year Birthday of the World Famous San Diego Zoo! “It Began With a Roar” back in 1915, when local San Diego physician Dr. Harry Wegeforth was cruising down Park Boulevard in San Diego, and was enthralled by the majestic roar of a lion in a cage. This inspired him to create the San Diego Zoo, and it was his vision and fortitude that then became the World Famous San Diego Zoo. The theme of our year long “birthday party” is “The Roar Heard ‘Round the World” – since our organization in the past 100 years become a global conservation leader. For us at San Diego Zoo, the term “roar” is used in many ways – it is a rallying cry, it is a sign of strong leadership, it is a call to action, it is an action verb synonymous with pride. We have had great fun creating “world famous” programs that “roar” – for example, “Roar Louders” are our leadership management classes every month; “Roar Back!” is the name for our annual Employee Engagement and Satisfaction Survey; “Roar Strongers” are our quarterly employee education forums; our award winning “Roar Longer” program is our health and wellness program; and “Roaring Rewards” represents our employee recognition and incentive programs. As a leadership team, we are proud of the roar we have made for the past 100 years, and our even stronger roar that will continue for the next 100 years. I am excited to share much of this in our new book, “Roar: How to Build a Resilient Organization the World Famous San Diego Zoo Way,” which will be available on May 14th, 2016. And I will be roaring loudly, strongly, and proudly in this blog – so keep coming back to hear what I have to roar about.

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