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About-Our-Team-Full-Scroll

Bonnie - Animal Curator
Originally from California, Bonnie grew up going to the Fresno Zoo for zoo camp as a child and then was a zoo camp volunteer as a teen. After interning as a zookeeper at the Lincoln Park Zoo in Chicago and completing a degrees in physiology and philosophy at Northwestern University she moved to Naples, Florida to work at the Naples Zoo. Later, she took a position as the hospital zoo keeper at Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo and was promoted to Animal Care Manager of the Livestock Department prior to her joining Ardastra team. Outside of the zoo, Bonnie loves staying active and being outdoors. On any given day you may find her exploring caves, jumping out of airplanes, hitting bike trails or doing AcroYoga; but most likely you will find her on or in the water.


Danika - Senior Zookeeper
Danika was born in Nassau, Bahamas and graduated from Government High school, later attending the College of the Bahamas, where she obtained her certificate in Massage Therapy. But working and taking care of animals has been her passion since she was a little girl. In late 2007 she was hired at Ardastra Gardens, where her interest for animals has grown even more each day. At the Gardens she started as a cashier and worked her way up to the position she is in now of Senior Zookeeper. Danika also enjoys giving education talks for school groups that visit the Gardens daily.

Brendan - Junior Zookeeper
Brendan started working at Ardastra Gardens on March 19th, 2012. In addition to working as a zookeeper, caring for our diverse animal collection, he prepares dozens of diets, and keeps the animal kitchen in perfect order. Brendan is also enrolled in classes at the College of The Bahamas.

Christina - Animal Food Preparation
Christina joined the Animal Care Team in November 2013.  Her experience in sales, restaurants and vet hospitals has helped her excel as the food prep staff in our animal kitchen.  You will find her at the bird feeding three times a day, showing guests how to feed our lory parrots, always with a big, friendly smile on her face!

Jeffrey - Operations Manager
Originally from Baltimore, Maryland, Jeff has worked for the past 20 years in the hospitality industry before joining Ardastra in May of 2014.  Previously, he owned and managed a coffeehouse in Beaufort, SC for 10 years.  After moving here with his wife, their two young daughters, and their dog, Jeff decided to pursue a career in which he could interact with people while being immersed in the natural beauty of the Bahamas.  

Leola - Administration 
Leola joined the Ardastra Team in July 2013. She graduated with honours from high school in Nassau, and then began her undergraduate studies at Albion College, Michigan. Leola hopes to complete her Bachelor’s Degree in Economics in the near future. She enjoys reading, singing, listening to music and having a good time with others. Leola’s cheerful and adaptive personality as well as her fluency in Spanish makes her a key player in the Visitor Services Department.

Helen – Visitor Services 
Helen was born in Hatchet Bay, Eleuthera. At the age of fourteen she moved to Nassau to live with family and attend school. Helen has worked in the retail business for over forty years and has a great passion for what she does. She enjoys getting to know people, sharing her knowledge of The Bahamas, and offering quality customer service.

Kevin - Visitor Services
Kevin is native to the island of Grand Bahama and a proud alumna of Sir Jack Hayward High School and the College of the Bahamas.  He has worked in the tourism sector for over 22 years, which has equipped him with the skills necessary to deliver the ultimate customer service experience to visitors on our shores.

Theresa - Horticulturist
While Theresa's official title is Horticulturist, she is more commonly known as the "Plant Lady".  After spending many years developing software, Theresa decided, in the mid-2000's, to turn a long time passion for gardening into a career.  Since joining Ardastra in 2011, she has been slowly replacing the many thousands of mother-in-law tongue plants on the property with a greater variety of species including yellow elder (the national flower), hibiscus, ixoras, jasmines and bromeliads.   Her greatest challenge is trying to find new ways to keep the resident pea fowl population from destroying the plants. 

Julian - Grounds Department
Julian was born in Nassau. A dedicated and loyal employee, he has worked at Ardastra for the past 27 years and is currently in the Grounds Department. He takes great pride in maintaining the paths and grounds so that our guests are safe and comfortable. Julian is a huge football fan and his favorite team is the Miami Dolphins.

Jude – Maintenance Manager
Jude was born in Nassau, Bahamas and has worked at Ardastra in the maintenance department since July 2012. He enjoys the job immensely and learned many of his skills from his father, contractor Milton Treco. What he taught Jude enables him to complete many of the daily maintenance tasks faced at Ardastra. When he is not at work, he enjoys reading, listening to music and especially spending the day out on his boat fishing.

Shane - Transportation and Security Officer
Shane joined the Ardastra team in 1993 as a customer service rep and messenger. His favorite thing about being employed at Ardastra is meeting new people and developing long term friendships. 

Gigi - Education Officer
Gigi acquired the post of Education Officer in June 2014. She came to this position with over twenty years in the education field and six years in the Environmental education sector. Gigi enjoys conservation work and sees it as educational as well as recreational. She is an animal lover and enjoys gardening.

Linton - Grounds Keeping

Danielle - Animal Care

Lionel - Animal Care

Joanel - Animal Care



Behind the Scenes - The Rest of the Team that Makes it all Happen:


Tishka
- Executive Assistant

Beverley -  Marketing Manager

Carol - Accounting/Office Administration

Tonya - Accounting/Office Administration

Sherry - Administrative/Human Resources Assistant

Kirsten - Special Projects-at-Large

Charlotte of Pure Salt Design - Graphic Designer-at-Large

Laura Millspaugh and Ruby Kepley - Ardastra Ambassadors