John Ball Zoo

About Us

John Ball Zoo is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation committed to the advancement of public education on the need for wildlife conservation and preservation. On January 1, 2014 Kent County, owner of the Zoo, and the John Ball Zoo Society unified their respective operations at the Zoo to create John Ball Zoo. A long term management agreement is in effect that allows non-profit management with continued ownership by Kent County.

Form 990
Financial Audit
Annual Report


John Ball Zoo inspires our community to be actively engaged in the conservation of wildlife and our natural environment.


Located in a 103 acre park and occupies approximately 31 acres
4th most attended cultural facility in Michigan
Over 533,000 visitors in 2017
700,000 people reached annually with wildlife and conservation messages
Over 200 species and over 1,300 individual animals are care for daily
Participates in 37 Species Survival Plans & 39 taxon advisory groups
$40,000,000 annual economic impact
Over 48,000 economically disadvantaged children and adults in Kent and Ottawa counties provided free Zoo admission through our JUMP program

Key Staff

Peter D'Arienzo, Chief Executive Officer
Andy McIntyre, Chief Operating Officer
Larry Jongekrijg, Chief Financial Officer 
Brenda Stringer, Chief Development Officer

John Ball Zoo Master Plan

Created in 2015, John Ball Zoo Master Plan is a collection of real data and dreams. It is conceptual in nature with the goal of creating a roadmap for a sustainable Zoological Park for our community. The plan contains concepts that are meant to be studied, meant to be flexible, and then ultimately realized over the next 25 years.

Charity Navigator

Charity Navigator is the United States’ best “charity watchdog” and evaluates the financial health of more than 5,000 well-known charities. Each charity is given an overall rating, ranging from zero stars to the top rating of four stars.

  • John Ball Zoo, tax identification number 38-6076879, is an I.R.C. Section 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation. Your contribution is tax deductible.
  • John Ball Zoo has the top Charity Navigator rating — 4 Stars/Exceptional
  • Only 10 percent of accredited zoos and aquariums reach this high standard.

For more detailed information, click here.