Ralston Library

While Joel Sartore calls Ralston home, he is no stranger to living on the road.

From searching for wildlife in Chile’s Atacama Desert to taking photos of endangered bats in Australia, Sartore has explored more than 40 countries as a National Geographic photographer.

On Saturday, the photographer, speaker, author, teacher and National Geographic Magazine contributor will be at Baright Public Library to give a presentation on his life as a wildlife photographer.

The presentation will begin at 1 p.m. at the library, 5555 S 77th St., and Bailey Halbur, library director, said she is eager to hear him speak.

“It’s awesome he’s willing to do this for us,” she said. “I heard that he is a good speaker and that he’s very enthusiastic.”

Sartore will also speak about Photo Ark, a 25-year effort project documenting 12,000 endangered species living in captivity.

By taking photos of such animals, Sartore hopes to bring awareness to their situations and shed light on how biodiversity plays a crucial role to the planet’s health.

Halbur said Sartore will speak for about 45 minutes and then stick around to answer questions from the audience.

With his busy schedule of traveling the world, Halbur said she feels grateful he made time to visit the library.

“I just thought there was no way he was going to come. He’s just so busy,” she said. “I feel so lucky.”

Marge O’Reilly, Baright Public Library Foundation member, was instrumental in having Sartore speak.

For several months, O’Reilly has been emailing Sartore hoping to secure him for a presentation.

O’Reilly, who is from Ralston, said she watched him grow up as she was close friends with his parents.

“It means a lot to me that he’s coming,” she said. “I’m very proud that Ralston has produced such a fine person and one that is contributing so much to society.”

The free event is open to the public and Halbur said she hopes for a good turnout.

“He’s so big time. We want to get everybody here that we can,” she said.

Email: ashley.quintela@bellevueleader.com Phone: 402-537-4849

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