I became acquainted with Katey Duffey through her personal blog, a fascinating and well-written
piece of journalism focusing on wildlife conservation, a passion we both share. An article from her
blog, “Chasing Ghosts in the Mongolian Altai,” which focuses on her study of the elusive snow
leopard was what drew me to her writings.
As editor of the Snow Leopard Conservancy’s online newsletter, I’m always looking for interesting
new content and eagerly anticipated collaborating with her in the future. An opportunity eventually
arose to work with Katey on a book I was writing about snow leopards, which featured essays and
photographs by wildlife photographers describing their treks into the high mountains of Asia in search of the iconic big cat. Katey’s straightforward and entertaining writings combined with her extensive knowledge of large carnivores, and research experience in the field made her unique literary contribution the perfect addition to the book. Her essays are some of the most moving and image- evoking found within the pages of Searching for the Snow Leopard. And while not a professional photographer, the expressive images she contributed of the local people exemplified what conservation is all about – helping people to live in harmony with wild species. From Katey’s blog, she says “conservation is strongly about helping the local communities … focusing on protecting livelihoods, trying to keep those species out of villages, or teaching local people how to coexist with certain species by understanding the animals’ behavior.”
With her combination of knowledge, experience, and a remarkable ability to communicate, together
with her training in wilderness medicine, including certification as a first responder in a remote
environment, Katey is exceptionally qualified to provide training in the important skills conservation
organizations and wildlife researchers will need to work safely in the field as they help people to
better coexist with their wild neighbors.