Santa Barbara Zoo

Graphic Designer (Full-time, Regular)


Santa Barbara, CA


Full Time


Under general direction of the Director of Marketing, the Graphic Designer provides art direction for Zoo marketing communications as well as Zoo graphics on site.  The Specialist designs, develops and coordinates production of institutional publications, exhibit graphics and all signage and displays for the Zoo. This position is responsible for establishing and maintaining institutional graphic standards in all print, environmental and electronic media of the Zoo as well as fulfilling all printing, publishing, tracking, billing, etc., for signs, brochures, newsletters, etc.


ESSENTIAL DUTIES include the following:

Graphics projects

  • Works under the supervision of the Director of Marketing to create and disseminate graphics, photography and other media on behalf of the Santa Barbara Zoo.
  • Performs highly technical artistic work for all aspects of Zoo publications
  • Ensures the Zoo brand is appropriately represented in all appropriate media and uses.
  • Maintains master matrix of all assigned graphic and publication related projects in production.
  • Provides consultation and services to meet strategic, institutional and departmental objectives.
  • Is source of knowledge of all assigned projects under production.
  • Provides consultations in regards to the Zoo’s computer programs as needed.
  • Ensures effectiveness, quality and timely completion of graphic projects within specified budgets
  • Coordinates production method and materials with outside vendors/contractors
  • Assists with the artistic design and development of special event activities as required
  • Maintains skills dealing with current capabilities of computer software needed/used for illustration, graphics, publications, charting, file transfer
  • Designs, develops, prints and coordinates assigned print publications: (including, but not limited to) brochures, Zoo map, mailings, Zoo News, Annual Report, Donor Publications, Flyers, Coupons, Tickets, Handouts, Print Ads, Invitations/Confirmations, Reservation Forms/Confirmations, Miscellaneous Forms (in-house and public), and other print publications as needed.
  • Designs, develops, prints and coordinates assigned collateral material (including but limited to): Letterhead, Note paper/cards, business cards, Memo templates, Envelopes, and other material as needed.
  • Designs, develops, prints and coordinates all assigned signage (including but not limited to), both permanent, temporary, produced in-house or out-of-house): Interpretive graphics, Directional Signage, Informational signage, Promotional Signage, Donor recognition signage, Event signage (on-site or off site), Display signage (on-site or off-site), Signage/Promotions in conjunction with partners, Banners/Flags, Vehicle Decals, and other signage as needed.
  • Will create promotion Zoo videos as assigned.
  • Additional duties and responsibilities as required

Staff Development:

  • Responds to graphics and illustration design and layout staff questions and concerns.

Operation and Business:

  • Encourages, supports and exemplifies the highest ethical standards to ensure the continued development of the institution and the profession.
  • Ensures that all regulatory standards are met such as adherence to applicable labor laws.
  • Holds peers accountable for their performance.
  • Ensures consistent productive operating practices by identifying areas for potential revenue generation, reduction of costs and more efficient procedures.


  • Interacts with all department heads as a member of the Zoo’s team.
  • Adheres to the Zoo’s policies and procedures as outlined in the Employee Policy Manual.
  • Directs and organizes graphics committee meetings.
  • Attends all bi-monthly all-employee meetings.

Guest Relations

  • Greets every guest with a smile.
  • Thanks guests for supporting/visiting the Zoo.
  • Responds to all guest inquiries, complaints, and comments according to Zoo guest relations procedures.



  • Answers phone calls, voice mails, and e-mails promptly.
  • Insures the Zoo’s presentation standards for cleanliness and maintenance are met by keeping work areas clean, picking up trash, reporting unsafe or unsightly conditions.
  • Associates with guests to assist and share information.
  • Responds to all guest inquiries, complaints, and comments according to Zoo guest relations procedures.
  • Maintains a clean neat appearance and adheres to the Zoo’s uniform dress code.
  • Takes responsibility to stay informed about happenings at the Zoo, such as reading employee communications and attending meetings.
  • Exemplifies the qualities outlined in the Guest Relations Statement and the Employee Pledge.
  • Other duties as required.



To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily.  The requirements and environmental characteristics described below are representative of the knowledge, skill, ability, and working and physical elements required of the position.  Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

 Education and Experience:

  • Bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts, Graphic Design, Visual Communication or equivalent and three to five years of professional experience in graphics design and production of publications,  advertising or related field.
  • Thorough understanding of desktop publishing, prepress imaging and offset printing technology
  • Thorough understanding of internet and multimedia programming, environmental graphics and signage including large format banners.

 License, Certification, or Preferred Qualifications:

  • Familiarity with a nonprofit environment preferred; familiarity with zoos desirable.
  • Valid driver’s license with good driving record is desirable.

  Knowledge, Skills, Abilities:

  • Excellent verbal and written communications skills.
  • Proactive and creative approach to problem solving
  • Possesses thorough knowledge and expertise in graphic arts and the process involved in it
  • Excellent at multi tasking and time management
  • Proficient in Microsoft Office software.
  • Proficient in technology and software standard to the industry
  • Ability to conceive and develop original graphics
  • Energy and enthusiasm.
  • Ability to interact within a team.
  • Demonstrated ability to work independently under pressure to meet tight time deadlines and performance standards.
  • Proven leadership ability.
  • Ability to interact courteously and respectfully with supervisors, fellow employees, volunteers, and guests.
  • Ability to exercise safe work habits.

 Physical Demands & Work Environment:

  • Requires the ability to differentiate between colors and shades of color.
  • Requires the ability to coordinate hands and eyes with precision in using computer and other special art equipment
  • Requires the ability to access all areas of the facility.
  • Regularly required to stand, walk, sit, and use tools. 
  • Involves working out-of-doors in all weather conditions at times.
  • Supportive and open employment culture.

 Tools Used:

  • Personal computer and software: Word, Filemaker Pro, Excel, Outlook, Adobe CS: particularly InDesign, Illustrator, and Photoshop.
  • Two-way radio
  • Standard office equipment; telephone, copier, printer, facsimile machine, calculator
  • Electric cart

This job description is representative of the expectations of the position described.  Additional duties, reporting relationships, and/or position criteria may be assigned as deemed necessary by the Chief Executive Officer or authorized representative.  No changes to this job description shall be made without written permission by the Chief Executive Officer or authorized representative.

The Zoo reserves the right to revise this job description at any time.  The job description does not constitute a contract for employment, and does not guarantee employment for any specified period of time.  The job description does not in any way alter the at-will employment relationship.


This is an hourly, non-exempt position. $22.50/hour.

We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.

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