For the past five or six years I've worked in southern Africa. When I was in places like Mozambique, I would listen to the Voice of America on the radio. I came to realize how much I missed working in the United States and hoped that my next assignment would be a return to home. So it was great news to hear about the Sacagawea story and to be selected to photograph it.
Not only was it a return to the United States, it was a return to the American West where I grew up. I drove across the country with my daughter, Louise, from our home in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia, and met the rest of the family in Oregon.
Growing up in Oregon, I was acquainted with the Lewis and Clark story and Sacagawea's role. My father was a geography and history teacher, and he was fascinated with Native American culture. I was also interested in having my daughters learn about an extraordinary woman's life. The strength of Sacagawea should be an inspiration to all of us, especially to young women.