In celebration of the American Bald Eagle being removed from the endangered species list, a special commemorative coin program was enacted. The 2008 Bald Eagle commemorative program was created to generate funds for the not-for-profit American Eagle Foundation of Tennessee. There are three denominations in the commemorative program. In addition to the silver dollar discussed here there was also a clad half dollar, and a gold $5 coin both discussed elsewhere.
The obverse was designed by AIP Master Designer Joel Iskowitz and sculpted by United States Mint Sculptor-Engraver Don Everhart. It includes a Mature eagle in flight soaring over a lake with a small mountain on the shoreline in the background. Just below the Eagles head are the sculptor's initials “JI” While the designer's initials “DE” are in script just to the right of the tail.
The reverse, sculpted by United States Mint Medallic Sculptor Jim Licaretz, is based on the original rendition of the Great Seal of the United States, which was used from 1782 to 1841. The designers initials "JL" are just to the right of the Talon clutching a bundle of 13 arrows. The "P" Mint park is just above this same Talon.