Meet the Team

Board of Directors

Tyler Thomas

Tyler is the Founder and Director of Fragile Planet Wildlife Center. Having grown up in a zoological atmosphere he has had the opportunity to work in both zookeeper and management positions in various facilities. Following in his father’s footsteps, Tyler also continues to support conservation action across the globe and introduce the world to the needs of wildlife, wild places, and conservation action.


Nick Stacey

Nick is the Co-Founder of Fragile Planet Wildlife Center. His strongest focus indicator species, namely various amphibians, and was the first private individual in the world to successfully reproduce the critically endangered Rio Pescado Stubfoot Toad (Atelopus balios), a native species to Ecuador. Nick also started working with wildlife at a young age and worked in various facilities as a zookeeper, educator, and life support tech. Nick also provides consulting services to other professionals assisting in the development and implementation of naturalistic vivaria conducive to the welfare of reptiles and amphibians throughout the country. 


Ashley Ortega
Board Member

Ashley Ortega is currently the Associate Curator of Reptiles and Amphibians at the Gladys Porter Zoo in Brownsville, TX and serves as the Galapagos Tortoise Species Survival Program manager. Ashley also serves on the Board for the King Cobra Conservancy and is active with other organizations such as the Turtle Survival Alliance and Sea Turtle, Inc. 


Mike Kerr
Board Member

Mike Kerr is a veteran of the zoological industry, having grown up working in his family’s many endeavors. His professional career has spanned both the private and public sectors in keeper and supervisor levels. Mike is dedicated to forward-thinking animal management and is vocal about supporting the zoological industry.



Ab Gonzalez

Ab is currently a zookeeper in Glady’s Porter Zoo’s Australia Department caring for a wide range of mammals including tree kangaroos, echidna, and bettongs. He also helps in other departments working with pygmy hippos, rhinos, and various other hoofstock. Ab is also deeply passionate about reptiles and maintains a small private collection himself. 


Karen Tracy

Karen is another Gladys Porter Zoo employee, working in the zoo’s “small world” with prehensile-tailed porcupines, various small primates, meerkats, and others. Her department also oversees the rearing of baby animals as needed. Karen has interned and worked at various zoos across the country including ZooNY, Zoo New England, and SeaWorld San Antonio in their Pets Ahoy! show. As a former student of Tyler’s, through SUNY’s Zoo Tech program, Karen has found a way to come back under our wing. 


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