Zoomagination was started to inspire and influence people of all ages to protect the natural environment through close animal encounters. Their vibrant and warm personalities make it easy for others to share in their passion for animals.
Growing up with animals, it didn’t take Robert long to realize that he had a natural ability to relate to them and care for them. After rescuing and nursing several animals back to health, he knew that his passion for animals would soon become his focus in life.
He began his professional career with animals in 1987 as a volunteer at the zoo in his hometown of El Paso, Texas. While pursuing his career, he studied at the University of Texas in El Paso, majoring in biology. This Journey led him to SeaWorld San Antonio where he worked as a professional animal trainer and international animal ambassador for 15 years. Intermittently, Robert has also worked as a veterinary technician at local animal hospitals.
For over 20 years, Robert has worked with and trained countless animals including: small mammals, birds, reptiles and marine mammals such as dolphins, beluga whales, sea lions, walruses and otters. He has performed with animals in hundreds of shows for thousands of people. His career as an animal ambassador has given him the opportunity to experience first hand the impact that animals have on people, inspiring him to share his passion and love of animals through Zoomagination.
Jennifer Phillips brings her lifelong love for animals to Zoomagination. In college, Jennie discovered that she could combine her interest in psychology with her love for animals through animal training and her dream of becoming a dolphin trainer was born. Over the years, Jennie’s experience with animals broadened and her passion for teaching others about animals’ amazing characteristics increased.
Jennie’s sense of adventure inspired her to move from California to pursue a job in San Antonio as a bird trainer. During this time she had the opportunity to work with exotic birds from around the world including psittacines, birds of prey, hornbills, and cassowaries! Jennie wowed audiences with her knack for animal training and expressed an obvious passion for showering love and affection on the animals under her care.
Jennie followed her dream of training marine mammals to Orlando, Florida where she trained bottlenose dolphins at Discovery Cove. Jennie learned to balance the curiosity and excitement of the audience with the needs and comfort of the dolphins. She eventually returned to SeaWorld San Antonio where she was able to continue training marine mammals such as beluga whales, dolphins, and sea lions through shows and interaction programs. In her 13 years of animal training experience, Jennie has performed in countless shows, interactions and educational programs with a variety of animals.
After many years of training animals across the country, Jennifer has been thrilled to start Zoomagination where she can incorporate her experiences in animal training and shows and her degree in Business Management into wildlife education and outreach. She is excited to continue sharing her appreciation for animal life with others through fun and educational interactive programs.
Clarissa is a necessary part of Zoomagination. Since the age of four, Clarissa began dreaming of having her very own horse. From then on, she fell in love with every animal she came in contact with. Growing up with cattle in the backyard and chickens in the front, her passion and excitement to work with animals for a career grew. Sugar gliders, hedgehogs, lizards, snakes, and tropical birds have all been under her care. As soon as she has able to drive, she began working on a dairy farm and later volunteered at a veterinary hospital. She continues to help her parents with their rabbit, duck, chicken, and peacock farm.
She began working for Zoomagination in 2013, and continues to be a vital part. She is a natural when it comes to working with and around animals. She is confident handling any species, and is always eager to learn about new species. Clarissa's experience has also allowed her the opportunities to work along side the legendary Jack Hanna as well as presenting animals for SeaWorld in San Antonio. The animal’s needs are Clarissa's top priority. She works hard to keep enclosures clean and maintained. Her dedication to the safety of the animals and guests during interactions is apparent. Her excitement and love for all kinds of animals is contagious. When Clarissa is not at Zoomagination, she is studying at the University of Texas at San Antonio to earn her bachelor's degree in public health, as well as caring for her dogs Raven and Rocky.