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Posted at 2:00 PM ET, 02/16/2010

National Zoo welcomes new director

By Washington Post editors

It may have been hard to spot in the flurry headlines about Snowmageddon and traffic meltdowns, but the National Zoo welcomed a new director this month.

Dennis W. Kelly, 56, formerly president of Zoo Atlanta, began work Friday, overseeing operations at the 163-acre zoo as well as its facility in Front Royal, Va.

In six years as president at Zoo Atlanta, Kelly raised more than $40 million in public and private funds. Kelly also strengthened the facility's education programs and assisted in developing education departments in dozens of zoos in China.

And no worries, panda lovers -- Kelly is well acquainted with all that is panda. Zoo Atlanta was home to Mei Lan, a 3-year-old female panda who was on the same flight to China as her cousin Tai Shan.

By Washington Post editors  | February 16, 2010; 2:00 PM ET
 
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