Celebrity Friends

Koko has had quite a few celebrity friends over the years, including Betty White, Robin Williams, Sting, Leo Di Caprio, Peter Gabriel, William Shatner, Mister Rogers, Dian Fossey, and Jane Goodall. All of these well-known ambassadors in their own right came to visit Koko in an effort to bring more attention to the nature and needs of gorillas and other great apes. Most developed a personal relationship with Koko that neither will ever forget: 

Betty White and Koko

Betty met Koko in 2004 and became best friends almost immediately. Ms. White was so fond of Koko and resonant with the Gorilla Foundation mission that she served on our Board of Directors from 2004 - 2016. They developed a fantastic relationship and Betty became a "co-ambassador" with Koko for the welfare of great apes. 

Robin Williams and Koko 

When comedian Robin Williams met Koko, he was profoundly moved and much quieter than his normal stage personality. Koko and Robin shared some great moments together, tickling each other, playing chase, and Koko even examined Robin's wallet (to make sure he was the real thing?). Later Robin Williams made a PSA for Koko and the Gorilla Foundation.  

Mister Rogers and Koko 

Fred Rogers did a special "Mister Rogers Neighborhood" show with Koko on "Accepting Differences", and he came for a visit to film it. Koko was in awe of Mister Rogers, as she had been watching him on TV since she was a baby. Koko and Mister Rogers become very good friends, and shared some very affectionate (and communicative) moments together.  


Contact Us



The Gorilla Foundation / Koko.org
1733 Woodside Rd., Suite 330
Redwood City, CA, 94061
1-800-ME-GO-APE (634-6273)

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Our mission is to learn about gorillas by communicating with them, and apply our knowledge to advance great ape conservation, education, care and empathy.

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