Meet the Chiefs
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Meet the Chiefs

Michelle Smurl

Chief Animal Officer

Chief Animal Officer, Michelle Smurl oversees the Animal Welfare and Veterinary teams working to ensure we continue to have the best animal care around, with an emphasis on helping to perfect our guest-animal encounters. Michelle has decades of experience caring for animals. She started at Busch Gardens as a zookeeper and computer specialist before accepting a position as Curator of Animals at Brevard Zoo in 1998. While at Brevard, Michelle prioritized animal wellness and focused on local conservation efforts.

Michelle received her B.S. in Animal Sciences from the University of Maryland and an M.S. in Library Sciences from the University of South Florida before joining Brevard Zoo. Since 2005, she has spent countless hours in the field working with Florida Scrub Jays and enjoyed exploring all the natural areas in Brevard County. She served as a fitness coach at Brevard Zoo for five years where she shared her passion for running, biking, hiking, and healthy living.