Lead Naturalist

Steve Lachonas

Lead Naturalist

Steve was born and raised in Pasadena, California where he started working with animals as a volunteer for the Los Angeles Zoo as an assistant bird keeper and participated in the seasonal nest box observation for the California Condor breeding program. While working at a local Children’s Museum, Steve watched a presentation of exotic animals, which led to a desire to work in outreach. Soon after, he became a keeper and presenter for Wildlife on Wheels. Later, he took a position in outdoor education for several seasons at Mountain And Sea Adventures (MSA) on Catalina Island.

With MSA, he taught classes in snorkeling, identifying local sea-life, kayaking, astronomy and marine biology. During his time at MSA, Steve also became the program director for Mountain and Sea’s mountain program at Forest Home Christian Conference Center. Steve also found time to attend the Masters College in Santa Clarita, California graduating with a Bachelor’s degree in Christian Ministries during this stage of his career.

Soon after graduation, Steve made a move to Toronto, Ontario, Canada where he felt called to be a youth pastor. While there he continued to use animals in presentations and developed a relationship with Creation Ministries International (CMI). As a result, he was soon invited by CMI to perform live animal presentations for some events.

After several years of living in Canada, Steve decided to make a move to Phoenix, Arizona. For the four years prior to joining the Animal Tales team, Steve was employed by the Phoenix Zoo to work as a camp zoo summer instructor, night camp instructor and finally school and family programs educator and animal handler.

In addition to his interpretive and educational work at the Phoenix Zoo, Steve spent the nearly two years traveling all over the state presenting live animal programs focusing on God and the wonders of His creation for the Arizona Origins Science Association.

Steve Lachonas Testimonials
  • "Our Presenter was AWESOME!!!! It's not easy keeping the attention of 3 yr olds and he did an excellent job. Parents enjoyed too!!!!" - Librarian
  • "I would recommend this program to any school looking for a highly engaging program that will keep the students attention and keep them talking about it for weeks!" - Principal