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Smart Talk is a daily, live, interactive program featuring conversations with newsmakers and experts in a variety of fields and exploring a wide range of issues and ideas, including the economy, politics, health care, education, culture, and the environment.  Smart Talk airs live every week day at 9 a.m. on WITF’s 89.5 and 93.3.

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National Geographic Photographer and Issues facing Asian American/Pacific Islanders

Written by Merideth Bucher, Producer | Jul 24, 2018 4:00 AM
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An endangered baby Bornean orangutan, Pongo pygmaeus, named Aurora, with her adoptive mother, Cheyenne, a Bornean/Sumatran cross, Pongo pygmaeus x abelii, at the Houston Zoo.© Photo by Joel Sartore/National Geographic Photo Ark

What to look for on Smart Talk Tuesday, July 24, 2018:

National Geographic  photographer Joel Sartore is a man on a mission, and time is running out. Not for him, but for the subjects of his work.

Sartore is the founder of the National Geographic Photo Ark, a 25-year documentary project to save species and habitat around the world by bringing attention to their plight. He hopes the photographs will encourage people to do something before it's too late.

Sartore's goal is to photograph the more than twelve thousand animal species currently living in the world's zoos and wildlife sanctuaries. He is more than halfway there. 

Some of his subjects are already gone. In 2008, Sartore photographed "Bryn," the last remaining Columbia Basin pygmy rabbit. Her death marked the species extinction.

Joel Sartore's Photo Ark will be featured at The Ned Smith Center for Nature and Art, Millersburg, Pa, through the end of August. He will be speaking there from 3-4 on Saturday, July 28.

Sartore joins us Tuesday to talk about his project and the status of at-risk species. 

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Photo by Grahm S. Jones, Columbus Zoo and Aquarium, after a photo shoot at the Columbus Zoo in Ohio, a clouded leopard cub climbs on Sartore's head. The leopards, which live in Asian tropical forests, are illegally hunted for their spotted pelts.

Asian Americans are the fastest growing racial group in Pennsylvania, according to an article in the Public Opinion reporting on census trends. In fact, Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPIs) are the fastest growing racial groups in the United States.

Like any group of people, they are not immune to the social influences and issues affecting society today. Issues such as the opioid epidemic, sexual assault, domestic violence, and bullying impact their communities without distinction.

Governor Tom Wolf's Advisory Commission on Asian Pacific American Affairs is hosting a symposium on Saturday, July 28, at the State Museum to highlight these complex issues and give participants access to local and state resources. 

Joining us in the studio is Tiffany Chang Lawson, the Executive Director of the advisory commission and Dr. Sue Mukherjee, Vice Chair, Jobs that Pay Committee, to discuss the event and how they hope it will impact the AAPI community.

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Tiffany Chang Lawson and Dr. Sue Mukherjee

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