A red wolf pup walking through the grass

For Wildlife. For All. For Wildlife. For All.

Our Vision

Inspire communities to create environments where wildlife will thrive in our urbanizing world.

Our Mission

Lincoln Park Zoo is dedicated to connecting people with nature by providing a free, family-oriented wildlife experience in the heart of Chicago and by advancing the highest quality of animal care, education, science, and conservation.

Our Promise

We are committed to creating an environment that is inclusive and welcoming. We celebrate the diverse qualities, perspectives, values and experiences of all people, including our guests, volunteers, and staff. For Wildlife. For All.   

Our Core Commitments

Animal Care staff nursing a small bird


We use science to evaluate, evolve, and improve animal care and welfare.

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Flamingos in exhibit


Our team of more than 40 scientists combines fieldwork and labwork for a holistic approach to saving species around the world.

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Children watching the western lowland gorillas and writing down their observations


We foster connections between people and the natural world by co-creating programs with partners in Chicago neighborhoods.

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Guests at the zoo

Our Impact Depends on You

Who funds Lincoln Park Zoo? You do! Zoo members, donors, and visitors help cover around 80% of our annual operating costs to keep the zoo, a privately managed nonprofit, free and open every day of the year. Your support also advances the zoo’s mission of wildlife care, conservation, and learning.

Support the Zoo

Reports & Statements

Fiscal Year

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Boards and Leadership 

Our Board of Trustees and executive staff develop and execute strategic plans that mark a path for the zoo’s growth and continued success. With a commitment to our mission, our Women’s Board and Auxiliary Board take on extensive fundraising efforts to support the financial health of the zoo. Together, they forge and fund ways forward for Lincoln Park Zoo.

View Boards & Leadership

The lion statues in from of Matthew Laflin Memorial Building

Six Values Define Our Work 

Our values are the foundational traits of our institution, determining our commitments as we grow. In everything we do, we work to uphold them.

  • Visionary
  • Expert
  • Fun
  • Welcoming
  • Ethical
  • Collaborative

Join Our Team

  • Visionary
  • Expert
  • Fun
  • Welcoming
  • Ethical
  • Collaborative
A historic black-and-white photo of the seal pool

The Story of Chicago’s Free Zoo 

Founded in 1868, Lincoln Park Zoo is one of the most historic zoos in North America and one of the only free admission zoos in the country.

Discover Our History

A Proud Member of AZA 

Lincoln Park Zoo is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). AZA is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the advancement of zoos and aquariums in the areas of conservation, education, science, and recreation.  AZA is the gold standard in zoo and aquarium accreditation.

Learn About AZA

An Accredited Arboretum 

In 2019, Lincoln Park Zoo earned Level II arboretum accreditation in recognition of the Horticulture staff’s ongoing effort to identify, label, and monitor the tree and woody plant species across our 49-acre park.

Discover Plants & Gardens

Thank You to Our Partners