Photovoices International is sad to announce the passing of our dear friend and founder Ann McBride Norton on May 5th.
Ann arrived in Bali with her husband Ed in 2005 and dedicated herself to build the Photovoices International (PVI) team in Indonesia. Ann recruited Saras, and together with countless Photovoices volunteer photographers and field staff, they worked tirelessly to document the stories and cultures of the Indonesian archipelago from the remote village of Boti in Timor to the Javanese highlands of Sukabumi.
Ann believed in the timeless power of storytelling to capture the imagination and lead to lasting change. Using the Photovoices method, the PVI team and volunteer photographers documented their lives and culture, offering an intimate look into the firsthand knowledge and wisdom of Indonesia’s vibrant communities.
Photovoices village photographers shared stories of ancient religious beliefs, sacred ceremonies, and environmental dangers rarely seen by outsiders. With boundless enthusiasm, Ann was there to help share this important information with decision-makers, giving a powerful voice to these communities.
Indonesia’s people and places, held a special place in Ann’s heart. Whenever she had the chance, Ann put on her hiking boots or scuba gear to dive and hike, immersing herself in the natural beauty of the archipelago.
Following Ann’s move to the USA to be with Ed in 2014, Lensa Masyarakat Nusantara was established as an Indonesian non-profit organization to house Photovoices International and carry forward Ann’s legacy of empowering people through photography and bringing community voices into decision-making. Ann continued to support the work of Photovoices International as our Founder and Senior Advisor. We will never forget Ann’s kindness, her warm smile, and the love and passion she brought to sharing the stories of Indonesia with the world.
Memorial services for Ann will take place in Washington, D.C. and Baton Rouge, LA and Bali, Indonesia and will be announced at a later date.