Charles Dumais, Ed.D., Appointed President of Connecticut Zoological Society’s Board of Directors

BRIDGEPORT, Conn. – Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo announced Charles Dumais, Ed.D., has been appointed president of the Connecticut Zoological Society, the Zoo’s governing board, through the 2024 fiscal year. He takes over the position from former president Kimberly Rodney. A board member since 2018, Dumais is responsible for leading the board in organizational planning, financial oversight, and driving the mission of the zoo forward.  

“I am delighted to welcome Chip Dumais as he assumes leadership of the Connecticut Zoological Society’s board,” said immediate past president Kim Rodney. “Together with our new slate of board officers, he will effectively provide guidance as the Zoo begins its second century.”

Zoo Director Gregg Dancho said, "The Connecticut Zoological Society Board of dedicated volunteers is integral to the health and wellbeing of the Zoo. Chip Dumais has been a valued and active member, and I look forward to our continued work together in his new capacity."

Dumais, the executive director of Cooperative Educational Services headquartered in Trumbull, Conn., brings decades of experience in leadership and education to his new role.  A native of Connecticut, Dumais taught physics and calculus to thousands of students; chaired a science department; served as an assistant principal in Westport, Conn.; led Newtown High School in Sandy Hook, Conn. as its principal from 2008 to 2014; and most recently served as superintendent of the Amity Regional School District in Woodbridge, Conn.

Dumais also serves as an adjunct professor at Sacred Heart University, Central Connecticut State University, and the University of Connecticut. He is currently pursuing a J.D. from Quinnipiac University School of Law. He is a member of the Connecticut Commission for Educational Technology, the Trumbull Chamber of Commerce, and the Bridgeport Regional Business Council. 

Dumais resides in Milford, Connecticut. 

In addition to Dumais’ appointment, the following board members have taken on new leadership roles: 

Catherine Ladnier, Vice President

Bob Natt, Vice President

Claudette Kunkes, Second Vice President

Mitchell Cohen, Treasurer

Michael Kaufman, Secretary


About Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo:

Let Your Curiosity Run Wild! Connecticut’s only zoo, celebrating its 101st year, features 350 animals representing primarily North and South American and Northern Asian species. Guests won’t want to miss our Amur tiger and leopards, maned wolves, Mexican gray wolves and red wolves.  Other highlights include our Spider Monkey Habitat, the prairie dog exhibit, and the Pampas Plain with giant anteaters and Chacoan peccaries. Guests can grab a bite from the Peacock Café and eat in the Picnic Grove.  As an accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) and participant in its Species Survival Plan (SSP) programs, the non-profit Zoo is committed to the preservation of endangered animals and wild habitats. Tickets must be purchased on the Zoo’s website at

Submitted by Westport, CT

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