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Lifetime Achievement in Nature Photography Award

Presented in honor of one’s accomplishments, stature or length of service to nature photography

NOTE: Nominees who are not NANPA members must be born or reside in North America. However, this birth/residency requirement shall be waived if the non-NANPA member nominee’s work is focused on North America.

The 2023 winners, Boyd Norton and Wendy Shattil, will be honored at NANPA’s 2023 Nature Photography Summit in Tucson, May 4-6, 2023.
Nominations for the 2025 award are closed.
The Lifetime Achievement in Nature Photography Award is presented biennially to an individual who has served nature photography for at least 20 years. Nominees should have made significant contributions, such as an expansive body of work as a photographer or—equally important—service to/support of the nature photography industry. National name recognition is not as important as accomplishments.

Recipients do not need to be “of retirement age.” However, with all things being equal between two nominees, more consideration will be given to the older of the two.


  1. 20 years in nature photography industry
  2. significant contributions
  3. seniority/age

Selection criteria definitions

Body of work. The nominee’s expansive photographic body of work, over the nominee’s career, has been of exceptional quality.
Significant Service. The nominee’s service to the nature photography industry, over the nominee’s career, has greatly contributed to the advancement of nature photography, including the mentoring of aspiring nature photographers.

Professional Competence. The nominee has consistently demonstrated a mastery/knowledge of the artistic and craftsmanship aspects of nature photography.

Impact on Nature Photography. The nominee’s career length and impact upon the direction of nature photography has been extraordinary, as has the nominee’s influence on others within the nature photography industry.

2021 Lifetime Achievement Award recipients Joe and Mary Ann McDonald presented one of eight keynote sessions at NANPA’s 2021 Virtual Summit.

Past recipients

2023: Boyd Norton
2015: Wendy Shattil
2021: Joe and Mary Ann McDonald and Mark Lukes
2019: George LeppJoel Sartore and John Shaw
2017: Jack Dykinga and John Nuhn
2015: Frans Lanting
2013: Art Wolfe
2011: Robert Dunne
2010: Sebastion Salgado
2009: George Schaller and Paul Caponigro
2008: Michael and Patricia Fogden, and Bates Littlehales
2007: Dewitt Jones and Yann Arthus-Bertrand
2006: Les Line and Pat O’Hara
2005: Clyde Butcher and John Sexton
2004: Ann Guilfoyle and Russ Kinne
2003: Galen Rowell, Bradford Washburn, Fred Breummer, and Karl Maslowski
2002: Jim Brandenburg
2001: Freeman Patterson
2000: Erwin and Peggy Bauer
1999: Robert Sisson
1998: Leonard Lee Rue, III
1997: The Muench Family
1996: Phillip Hyde, David Brower, and Jane Kinne
1995: Roger Tory Peterson

NANPA’s Lifetime Achievement Award has been presented biennially in odd-numbered years since 2011 to coincide with NANPA’s Nature Photography Summit.