Terry L. Maple, scholar-in-residence in the College of Charleston School of Humanities and Social Sciences, passed away on Sunday, Dec. 3, 2023.

Terry Maple

Terry Maple

“On behalf of the School of Humanities and Social Sciences, I want to express my heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of Dr. Terry Maple,” says Gibbs Knotts, political science professor and dean of the School of Humanities and Social Sciences. “It was an honor to have Dr. Maple connected to the College of Charleston. He was a prolific scholar and someone who applied his work to make the community better.”

Maple was a pioneer in the zoo community for more than 40 years. He worked to optimize animal welfare standards and practices in his dual career as an animal welfare scientist and CEO of Zoo Atlanta and Palm Beach Zoo. He is credited with transforming Zoo Atlanta from one of the worst in America to one of the best in the world. His book Atlanta’s Iconic Ape: The Life of Willie B., published in 2021, tells the incredible true story of the gorilla whose journey from concrete jail to an outdoor life of freedom touched many hearts.

In 2003, Maple retired as president and chief executive officer, returning to Georgia Tech to found the Center for Conservation and Behavior. He served on the faculty for 30 years, retiring in 2008 as Elizabeth Smithgall Watts Professor of Conservation and Behavior Emeritus. After retiring, he lived in Amelia Island, Florida, and held positions at Florida Atlantic University and the University of North Florida.

Maple and his wife, Addie, had recently relocated to Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, to be closer to family.