Curator, Large Carnivores, Smithsonian's National Zoo

As the Curator of Large Carnivores (and Kids’ Farm) at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo, Craig Saffoe is responsible for the overall care and management of 18 species and more than 50 individual animals.  He works with a team of animal keepers to not only care for, but facilitate breeding with most of the Zoo’s large carnivores – which includes one of the most critically endangered species (Sumatran tigers) managed at the National Zoological Park. Craig started his career as an intern in 1994 and worked his way up to Animal Keeper, Biologist and now Curator. In that time, he has been a part of many successful teams including the team that managed, bred and successfully produced the first two cheetah litters ever born at the Smithsonian. Craig now leads a team that has been incredibly successful at breeding large carnivores – boasting multiple successful litters of lions and tigers and yes bears….Oh my!