Answering an announcement recruiting volunteers for "the new zoo" on WCCO Radio in 1977, Paul Olson solidified his life-long commitment to animals. Paul was working full-time at the University of Minnesota caring for animals in the Psychology Department laboratory, and decided to volunteer on weekends to help out at the Zoo. He remembers the Zoo's opening in May of 1978 fondly and has enjoyed his volunteer work for more than 35 years.
In addition to his amazing gift of time to the Zoo over the years, Paul enjoys supporting the animals and programs he is passionate about with contributions, including being a Friend of the Minnesota Zoo, attending the Beastly Ball, and recently joining the Zoo's Circle of Life Society, which provides future gifts to the Zoo through bequests and estate planning. "The Zoo is moving in the right direction," Paul says with a smile. When asked why he supports the Zoo, Paul simply replies, "I enjoy it… I like the plans for the future."