New Board Members Named to Oakland Zoo's East Bay Zoological Society

March 29, 2012
Emma Lee Twitchell, Director, Development
(510) 632-9525 ext. 153

Nicky Mora, Senior Manager, Marketing/PR
(510) 632-9525 ext. 130

New Board Members Named to Oakland Zoo's East Bay Zoological Society
Oakland, CA, March 29, 2012... On Thursday, March 29, 2012, New members have been elected to the Board of the East Bay Zoological Society (EBZS). Patrick Sherwood, Jim Wunderman, Kirsten Vital, Meredith Burke and Marianne Laouri, Ph.D. will each provide an important role as trustees in nurturing and furthering the mission of the Oakland Zoo. "I am thrilled to have this group of successful individuals join the Oakland Zoo Board," said Dr. Joel Parrott, President and CEO of Oakland Zoo. "This new group of people will bring a wealth of knowledge, experiences, and new ideas to the Oakland Zoo. They will further help us provide a quality experience to the community we serve." The Oakland Zoo welcomes these outstanding members to the Board.

Patrick Sherwood
Patrick Sherwood is an Executive VP for Wells Fargo Bank. He has worked for Wells Fargo for twenty-five years, most recently as the Western Region Head for Wells Fargo Bank's Global Finance Institutions - US Bank's group, covering the domestic bank portfolio for the Western U.S. He has served in leadership roles for the Cal Aggie Alumni Association (UC Davis) for the past ten years, currently serving as president. Sherwood has a BA in Economics from UC Davis and an M.S. in Management from Stanford Graduate School of Business where he was a Sloan Fellow. He lives in Danville and his oldest of 3 children attends UC Davis. Past non-profit activities include former Treasurer/Board Chair for the Central Coast YMCA and serving as a Trustee of the Hartnell College Foundation.

Jim Wunderman
Jim Wunderman is the President and CEO of the Bay Area Council, a business-backed public policy organization formed in 1945 by then California Governor Earl Warren and top CEO's in the Bay Area. Since becoming CEO in 2004, Wunderman has honed the council's regionalist approach to advocacy in the key areas that impact the Bay Area's economy and competitiveness, including: Education, Transportation, Renewable Energy, the Sustainability, Land Use and the Business Climate. Wunderman led the Council's efforts to promote the Bay Area's global leadership that included the opening of its first overseas office in Shanghai. He has played an instrumental role in securing federal, state and regional funding for major transportation projects completed or currently under construction. He has created strong programs to support education improvement reform at all levels, with a particular focus on the use of data systems to inform decision making and the educational needs of young children.

Under his leadership, the Council has continued to play a key role in efforts to achieve consensus-based solutions to California's water challenges, and is leading the region's business community in the effort to make sure the economy is a primary driver of planning and regional sustainability efforts.

Prior to his work at the Bay Area Council, Wunderman's career from 1984 to 2004 was split between both the private and public sectors. He served as Chief of Staff to San Francisco Mayor Frank M. Jordan from 1992-95, following five years of work for Mayor Dianne Feinstein. From 1997-2004 he served as Senior Vice President for External Affairs at Providian Financial Corporation. He also served as Vice President and General Manager of two major waste collection, disposal and recycling firms in the Bay Area under its parent, Recology, Inc.

Wunderman has served on numerous Boards and Commissions. He currently serves on the board of directors or advisors of the Bridge Housing Corporation, Fisher Center for Real Estate & Urban Economics, The Keston Institute for Public Finance and Infrastructure, The Oakland Zoo, Californians for Clean Energy and Jobs (CCEJ) The Pew Charitable Trusts, Sierra Energy, TMG Partners, and also serves on the Transit Sustainability Project Steering Committee, and the San Francisco Renewable Energy Task Force.

Wunderman is a Visiting Professor at the UC Davis Graduate School of Management. He is a graduate of San Francisco State University, Majoring in Political Science, and received an Associate's Degree in Business Administration from Kingsborough College, City University of New York. He has four children and resides in Contra Costa County.

Kirsten Vital
Kirsten Vital is Superintendent of the Alameda Unified School District, a position she has held for over three years. Previously she served as Chief of Community Accountability, an Associate Superintendent position in the Oakland Unified School District. She has held various roles in education including high school teacher, site principal and district office administrator. She serves on other boards including the Boys and Girls Club Advisory, Great Oakland Public Schools, and the Alameda Education Foundation. She holds a BA from Northeastern University, a Master's Degree in Education from Whittier College and is ABD, in Educational Leadership at Saint Mary's College of California. Vital lives in Oakland with her husband and their black Labrador retriever.

Meredith Burke
Meredith Burke is a CPA with a Bachelor's Degree in Accounting from Louisiana State University and a Master's Degree from Wake Forest. For the past four years she has been a financial manager at the Sun Products Corporation, serving in various roles including financial planning and analysis. Prior to Sun Products, she worked for Visa, Arovit Pet Food (UK), Doane Pet Care, and KPMG. She moved to Oakland last May and has two young children. They are members of the Zoo and visit often.

Marianne Laouri, Ph.D.


The Bay Area's award-winning Oakland Zoo is home to more than 660 native and exotic animals. The Zoo offers many educational programs and kid's activities perfect for science field trips, family day trips and exciting birthday parties. Nestled in the Oakland Hills, in 500-acre Knowland Park, the Zoo is located at 9777 Golf Links Road, off Highway 580. The East Bay Zoological Society (Oakland Zoo) is a nonprofit 501(c)3 organization supported in part by members, contributions, the City of Oakland and the East Bay Regional Parks. For more information please visit our website at