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LIVE from the NYPL: Risk Takers: National Geographic and the New Age of Exploration with Lynsey Addario, James Nachtwey, Dr. Enric Sala, Dr. Zoltan Takacs, and Ann Curry


In celebration of National Geographic’s 125th Anniversary theme, The New Age of Exploration, photographers and explorers reveal the physical, personal, and cultural perils involved in pushing the boundaries of discovery and bearing witness. The event will feature a discussion moderated by Ann Curry about the risks of documenting war, conflict, and human rights issues with award-winning National Geographic photojournalists Lynsey Addario and James Nachtwey as well as presentations from National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence Dr. Enric Sala, who is working protect marine ecosystems worldwide, and National Geographic Emerging Explorer Dr. Zoltan Takacs, a herpetologist/toxinologist who studies the healing potential of toxic venoms. 

Presented by RBC.


Lynsey Addario is an American photojournalist based in London whose work for National Geographic has focused on Iraqis returning to their lives (“Baghdad After the Storm”) and the lives of women in Afghanistan‘ (“Veiled Rebellion”). She began photographing professionally in 1996 for The Buenos Aires Herald in Argentina. Since then, Addario has covered the humanitarian crisis in Syria, the Taliban in Afghanistan, the Islamic world, the war in Iraq, conflicts in Darfur and the Democratic Republic of Congo, and the election of Ahmadinejad in Iran for publications such as The New York Times and Time. In March 2013, she was named a “Young Global Leader” by the World Economic Forum. She was awarded the Overseas Press Club’s Olivier Rebbot Award in 2011 for “Veiled Rebellion,” and in 2010 was named one of 20 women on Oprah Winfrey's Power List. In 2009, Addario was awarded a MacArthur fellowship Genius grant, and she was part of The New York Times team that won the Pulitzer Prize for International Reporting. She received a B.A. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.


Since 1981, James Nachtwey has documented wars and critical social issues worldwide. In Europe, he photographed the breakup of the former Yugoslavia, the war in Chechnya, and civil unrest in Northern Ireland.  In Africa, he documented the genocide in Rwanda, famine in Somalia and Sudan and the liberation struggle in South Africa. Nachtwey has covered the Palestinian-Israeli conflict for more then twenty years, as well as the civil wars in Lebanon and most recently the war in Iraq. He is also involved in documenting global health issues in the developing world.  In 2007, Nachtwey received a TED Prize, and for his “wish” he chose to create a global awareness campaign about tuberculosis. Other awards include the Common Wealth Award, the Dan David Prize, the Heinz Family Foundation Award, the Dresden Prize, the Robert Capa Gold Medal, and lifetime achievement awards from both the Overseas Press Club and TIME, Inc. In 2001, “War Photographer,” a documentary film about his life and work, was nominated for an Academy Award.


Scientist-adventurer and National Geographic Emerging Explorer Dr. Zoltan Takacs develops drug leads from the world's most dangerous venomous animals. He is the co-inventor of the Designer Toxin technology, a toxin-genomics platform developed at the University of Chicago.  He holds a Ph.D. in pharmacology from Columbia University in studies on cobra venom. He has carried out research on snake venom pharmacology and evolutionary genetics at Rockefeller, Columbia, and Yale Universities. Dr. Takacs has traveled to 138 countries. His field work aims to extract venom and DNA samples from all sorts of venomous animals in the most remote and inhospitable rain forests, coral reefs, and deserts on Earth. Access to these habitats is aided by Takacs' expertise as an aircraft pilot and scuba diver, as well as his ability to live out of a backpack for weeks. His findings have been featured multiple times in National Geographic magazine, on the National Geographic Channel and PBS/NOVA.



Enric Sala leads National Geographic’s Pristine Seas, an exploration, research and conservation project to find, survey and help protect the last wild places in the ocean. Enric has been instrumental in the creation of the US Pacific Remote Islands National Monument, the Motu Motiro Hiva Marine Park in Chile, and the Seamounts Marine Managed Area in Costa Rica. He is now working with partners to inspire the  U.K. government to create the largest no-take marine reserve of the world around the Pitcairn Islands, where he led a ground-breaking expedition in March 2013. His more than 100 scientific publications, dozens of popular articles, and five documentary films are widely recognized and used for conservation efforts. Sala is a 2005 Aldo Leopold Leadership Fellow, a 2006 Pew Fellow in Marine Conservation,  a 2008 Young Global Leader at the World Economic Forum, and in 2013 he obtained the Research Award of the Spanish Geographical Society. Sala is a National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence. 



Ann Curry is the National and International Correspondent/Anchor and TODAY Anchor at Large. Curry reports for all platforms of NBC News. Curry has distinguished herself in global humanitarian reporting, traveling to remote areas of the world for under-reported stories, including conflicts and crises in Darfur, Chad, Sudan, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. As part of TODAY’s Ends of the Earth series, Curry has extensively examined the effects of climate change, traveling to Antarctica and the South Pole, and climbing Mount Kilimanjaro. Curry has earned seven Emmy Awards, four Golden Mikes, several Associated Press Certificates of Excellence, three Gracie Awards, a Matrix Award from New York Women in Communications, and an award for Excellence in Reporting from the NAACP among many other honors. Curry graduated from the University of Oregon School of Journalism.
















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LIVE from the NYPL is made possible with generous support from Celeste Bartos, Mahnaz Ispahani Bartos and Adam Bartos, and the Margaret and Herman Sokol Public Education Endowment Fund.