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Congratulations to Roz Savage

Former photographer completes first stage of solo Pacific row

©Mike Danzeisen - Roz Savage arrives in Hawaii 20080901

By Joan Sherwood, Senior Editor

Though we constantly hear of new professionals who've entered photography after leaving established careers in other fields, we rarely hear what they go on to do after that in the instances when it doesn't quite work out. Roz Savage's unlikely career track progressed from corporate manager and consultant, to part-time wedding and portrait photographer, and on to ocean rower, environmental advocate, adventurer, and corporate and motivational speaker. On Sept. 1, Roz Savage completed the first stage of her attempt to be the first woman to row solo across the Pacific and became the first woman to row solo from San Francisco to Hawaii.

Caption: Roz Savage on the morning of her arrival in Honolulu after rowing 2,598 nautical miles from San Francisco to raise awareness of plastic pollution in the world's oceans. Photo ©Mike Danzeisen

Savage arrived in Honolulu in the early dawn of Sept. 1, having rowed across 2,598 nautical miles in 99 days, 8 hours and 55 minutes. The purpose of her voyage is to bring attention to the crisis the world's oceans face, particularly plastic pollution that as it degrades is making its way into the food chain. She shared the details of her voyage through a daily blog and thrice-weekly podcasts achieved via satellite phone in interviews with Leo Laporte, host of This Week in Tech and other technology-related shows produced by In the next phase of her journey, scheduled to begin in March of 2009 when weather conditions are favorable, she will row from Hawaii to the Tuvalu Islands, and in 2010 she will attempt the final leg from Tuvalu to Australia.  

In her last podcast with Laporte for this year, Savage commented on her rowing as a metaphor for what one person can do for the environment, saying "It’s all about the cumulative effect of small actions, good or bad. If I’d have stood there on the coast of California saying, 'Well, one oar stroke isn’t going to get me anywhere,' I would still be in San Francisco. But you do something, like an oar stroke, and you repeat it a million times, and you find out you’ve really achieved something."

We wish her great success in her future endeavors.

©Phil Uhl - Roz Savage arrives in Hawaii 20080901
Roz Savage arrives at the Waikiki Yacht Club after 99 days at sea, becoming the first woman to row solo from San Francisco to Hawaii in the first leg of her attempt to row solo across the Pacific from California to Australia. Photo ©Phil Uhl