Interim Niabi Zoo director Marc Heinzman is one of two finalists for the director's job.
The other finalist is Joe Clawson, director of the Louisiana Purchase Gardens and Zoo in Monroe, La., according to a news release from the Rock Island County Forest Preserve District.
There were about 40 applicants for the job and the advertised salary for the position was $55,000 to $70,000.
The media has been invited to interview each of the candidates, starting with Mr. Clawson on Wednesday, followed by Mr. Heinzman next week.
The Forest Preserve District, which oversees the county-owned zoo, worked with the Niabi Zoological Society to narrow the field of candidates.
Former Niabi director Mark Ryan was terminated in January after 15 months on the job and Mr. Heinzman, who was assistance director, has been running the zoo since then.
A Milan native and graduate of St. Ambrose University, Mr. Heinzman began work as assistant director at Niabi in December of 2010.
Mr. Clawson has been director of the Louisiana Purchase Gardens and Zoo since 2009. The zoo has 400 animals, representing about 100 species, 40 full-time and part-time staff, and a budget of $1.4 million.
Mr. Clawson is a graduate of Brigham Young University in Utah and previously worked at Riverside Zoo in Scottsbluff, Neb., and Baton Rouge Zoo in La.
Niabi has 375 animals representing about 170 species, 19 full-time staff, 50 seasonal staff, and a budget of $2.2 million.
The Forest Preserve District is expected to announce the winning candidate for the director's job by the first week of July.
Today is Wednesday, June 19, the 170th day of 2013. There are 195 days left in the year. 1863 -- 150 years ago: The treasurer of Mercer County has been instructed to sell all thespecie now in the treasury for the highest premium in legal tender and to report same atthe next board meeting. 1888 -- 125 years ago: J.S. Freeman has been elected president of the Recreation Club ofthe Rock Island YMCA. 1913 -- 100 years ago: Rock Island voters will decide next Tuesday on the proposal toconsolidate with South Rock Island Township. 1938 -- 75 years ago: The Rev. Frederick J. Rolf will round out his 30th year as pastor ofthe Evangelical Church of Peace at Sunday worship services. 1963 -- 50 years ago: Dennis Kelly, of Moline High School, has been named a winner inTime Magazine's 27th annual current affairs contest. 1988 -- 25 years ago: The Martin Luther King Community Center will participate in theSummer Food Service Program. Free meals will be made available to all children 18years of age and younger.