Our Founders

Endangered Wolf Center Founders

In the 1960s and 70s, millions of children grew up glued to the television when Marlin Perkins invited them on a weekly journey across the world during “Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom.”

The beloved zoologist was the original celebrity wildlife expert, connecting kids to rare and wonderful animals in their native habitats.

In 1971, Marlin and his wife Carol turned their attention toward one endangered animal in particular – the wolf. They joined with a group of individuals to found the Endangered Wolf Center in an effort to address the serious plight of wolves at risk of extinction.

Our visionary founders knew what scientists have recently confirmed: no ecosystem can thrive without the top predator in place.

Through carefully managed breeding programs, inspiring educational programs and innovative methods for introducing releasable wolves into their native habitats, our Center set out to change the fate of endangered canids.

And for more than 40 years, we’ve been doing just that.

Today, our nonprofit organization is considered the cornerstone of wolf conservation in America. In fact, every Mexican gray wolf in the wild can trace his or her roots back to one place – our Center.

In the safety of our 63 isolated wooded acres near St. Louis, Mo, our wolves and other canids have the opportunity to become candidates for reintroduction into their native habitats. We do this thanks to a partnership with the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service – and, most of all, our incredible staff, volunteers and supporters. We hope you’ll join us.