Why Photographer and Advocate Jill Snyder Is Marching for Elephants

Why I March - Jill

Each week in our #WhyIMarch series, we’ll be featuring examples of people in our community who are living proof that ordinary people can make an extraordinary difference for elephants. This week, meet Jill Snyder!

If you’ve ever seen any of the terrific photos from Elephants DC events, such as our February 2015 vigil for elephants (to name one), chances are you’ve seen the work of our very own Jill Snyder.

Based in Falls Church, VA, Jill is a senior banking official by day, and a talented wildlife photographer and elephant advocate every other chance she gets. Jill’s dedicated volunteer work for Elephants DC has been vital for making our events run smoothly and increasing our impact for elephants locally and worldwide.

Just one example of Jill's work: Jill participated in a roundtable discussion at the U.S. Department of State in October 2014 to advocate for elephants.

Just one example of Jill’s work: Jill participated in a roundtable discussion at the U.S. Department of State in October 2014 to advocate for elephants.

You can bet that Jill will be marching with us at the Third Annual International March for Elephants in Washington DC on October 4.  Hear more in her own words about why!

1. What motivates you to stand up and take action for elephants?

I have been traveling to Africa regularly since 2000. Before I knew elephants were in danger of extinction, and before I learned more and more about them from a scientific and anecdotal perspective, I was able to personally observe what appeared to be keen intelligence and overt caring for their families.

Then in 2011, I was privileged to spend two weeks working with elephants at a reserve in South Africa for orphaned elephants, where I spent more time with them, up close and personal, observing their personalities and relationships.  I realized I had fallen in love with them a long time before that, and since then, I have been passionate about educating and influencing others to help prevent their extinction in any way that I can.

I love to photograph elephants and can’t imagine a time when there will be no more elephants to photograph.

2. What’s your favorite part about marching for elephants?

I love being a part of the passion of the marchers to raise awareness, which culminates at the rally in front of the White House. The speakers have been inspiring!

3. Why do you think we need a march in Washington, DC? 

As the heart of our nation’s federal government, DC is not only a symbol of what should be just and fair, but it houses our lawmakers who can make a difference.

A march in Washington DC can draw attention to role our government needs to play in banning ivory commerce, providing more support for our overwhelmed Customs agents to find and arrest ivory smugglers, banning hunters from importing their “trophies,” and finally, working internationally to stop the poaching and sale of ivory.

4. Why should everyone you know come to the march on October 5?

The march has introduced me to new friends and advocates, while providing a forum for discussion about how all can work together to save elephants and end the ivory trade.  It’s a great opportunity for raising awareness!

Everyone, follow Jill’s example and join us on Sunday, October 4 in Washington, DC for our Third Annual International March for Elephants!  We look forward to seeing you there. 


P.S. Want to be featured in our #WhyIMarch campaign? We’d love to add your voice! Send an email to fundraising@elephantsdc.org.

P.P.S. You can help us meet our fundraising goal to buy the supplies and equipment for our march — and get a bumper sticker, t-shirt or art print — by donating here. Thank you!


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