Help Name the Columbus Zoo's Baby Elephant

Staff Writer
Columbus Parent
A public vote will determine the name of this female elephant, born Dec. 6 at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium.

The Columbus Zoo and Aquarium is asking the public to vote on a moniker for its new baby elephant.

The female elephant calf, born Dec. 6, will be named Darcy, Ellie, Kobie or Lizzie. Those options were chosen by the family of longtime volunteer and board member Kathryn Elisabeth Anderson Koblentz.

According to a zoo announcement, Koblentz’s husband, Bob Koblentz, and children, Maureen Koblentz Groves and Rob Koblentz, chose names that have significance to the family:

  • Darcy was inspired by Kathy Koblentz’s favorite book, “Pride and Prejudice,” by Jane Austen and also was the name of the family’s collie.
  • Ellie was inspired by Kathy’s middle name, Elisabeth.
  • Kobie was derived from Koblentz.
  • Lizzie also comes from Kathy’s middle name, and additionally is a variation of Elizabeth, the main character in “Pride and Prejudice.”

The public can vote on the names through Jan. 3 at The winning name will be announced Jan. 4.

The baby and mom Phoebe can be seen from 3-6 p.m. daily in the Vanishing Giants building. This is the third elephant born at the zoo and the first since 2009, when Phoebe gave birth to Beco. She also gave birth to Bodhi, who is now at the Denver Zoo, in 2004. The father of those males, Coco, died in 2011. The father of the new baby, conceived by artificial insemination, has not yet been determined. The new calf joins an existing herd of six Asian elephants.

According to the announcement, Koblentz became involved with the zoo in 1972, when she helped prepare a budget with Columbus Recreation and Parks director Mel Dodge, and continued her work for 45 years. She was the first woman to serve as treasurer, president and chair of the board of directors, and also worked as a docent and won several awards. She died in 2017.