Today in the Confessional, host Sandy Lowres chats with Jan Latta, an brilliant and adventurous woman in her 80s whose passion for wildlife has taken her around the globe.
After decades of trailblazing the advertising and publishing world as an independent woman, an up-close-and-personal encounter with a mountain gorilla in the wilds of Rwanda – think Dian Fossey and Gorillas in the Mist – that Latta, who has more than 15 children’s book titles under her belt, credits with sparking the fire in her belly that doesn’t look anything like going out even after over 20 years.
“I came face to face with him up in the mountains and that changed my life and my career. My guide said there were only 600 mountain gorillas left in the entire world. I thought that was pretty sad and I knew I had to do something.”
With considerable advertising experience and with extensive contacts, Latta had a number of options when it came to spreading the conservation message, but decided it was the
animals themselves that needed to “tell the story”.
Under the direction of acclaimed African-based photographer Karl Ammann, the now-former ad-industry exec swapped her briefcase for a camera lens and embarked on what’s been, and is, an incredible journey to success as an educator and conservation campaigner. took her spotlight in the hearts of thousands of children, sharing her love of endangered species through an astonishing collection of wildlife photographs, and a phenomenal ability to recount her most thrilling adventures.
Jan has written her memoir – I did it my way – a powerful, inspirational story of never giving up from Australia’s wildlife photographer.
You can follow Jan Latta here: