Who We Are

Our Story

Our roots date back to 1975, when Gerry Ward started Gerry Ward and Associates, Inc., a consulting firm responsible for the design of visitor service operations and gift shops for over 100 cultural attractions across North America.  With a keen eye for aesthetics and realism, Gerry developed successful operational procedures, staff development programs, inventory management and store design for some of the nation’s most prestigious zoos and aquariums. 

In 1995, Gerry renamed Gerry Ward and Associates to Wildlife Trading Company of New Mexico when approached by the Rio Grande Zoo to improve the revenues and experience of their retail operations. The Rio Grande Zoo is now known as the Albuquerque BioPark, a partner that we continue to work with today. 

Gerry, working side-by-side with his son, James, continues to build relationships by focusing on the three core principles that make WTC a unique organization in our marketplace: 

  • A handcrafted, boutique-like approach to every aspect of retail, from store design to merchandise selection. 
  • An uncompromising level of quality throughout our operation. 
  • Our unbridled passion to create a completely unique and one-of-a-kind, customized retail environment to each one of our partners. 

As a company of people who have a genuine passion and appreciation for our natural world, we not only talk the talk, but walk the walk. Our passion is evident in everything we do.

History of WTC

  • 1974

    The formation of Gerry Ward and Associates

  • 1977

    Partnership with San Antonio Zoo

  • 1986

    Providing Services to Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo

  • 1992

    Bronx Zoo Operational Consultants

  • 1995

    Gerry Ward and Associates renamed to Wildlife Trading Company

  • 2000

    Celebrating 25 Years of business

  • 2001

    Expansion to Bethel, CT Office

  • 2006

    First Museum; Partnership with Alaska SeaLife Center

  • 2009

    Caribbean Stores; 23-year Contract Extension; Roger Williams Zoo

  • 2010

    Traveling Exhibit Partnership; Florida Hub Established

  • 2011

    Opening of Orlando Office; Pacific Northwest Partnerships

  • 2012

    Operating in Canada

  • 2013

    Saint Louis Science Center, Pacific Northwest & Florida Partnerships

  • 2015

    Partnership with Iditarod Trail Committee

  • 2016

    Expansion to Southbury, CT Office; New Alaskan Partner