My day job is executive director for Safe Harbor Child Advocacy Center.
Our role is to provide a safe, child-friendly environment for a forensic interview when a child has been the victim of a crime or a witness to one. Without a resource like us, the child would be forced to recount their experience multiple times—with whomever they first trusted with it, plus, potentially, law enforcement and child protection workers, medical professionals, counselors and a prosecuting attorney.
At Safe Harbor, a highly trained forensic interviewer conducts a taped interview with the child that can be used in court. We also provide support services to the non-offending caregiver who is likely experiencing trauma because a child in their care has been victimized and, often, because they themselves also have a history of being abused.
Social justice has been the driver behind my education and career choices and I have a special passion for vulnerable women and children—both at the individual and system levels. There are so many examples of people experiencing trauma because of an event they’ve gone through and the trauma inflicted on them by the system. We have to find better ways for the system to respond without re-traumatizing the victim.
The Me Too movement is a critical force for change and I hope it will make it harder for perpetrators and easier for kids to be believed when they report abuse. But, of course, the big challenge is how do we get this behavior to stop. It’s a question we’ve been asking for a long time.
My most memorable caffeine would be my first dirty chai—which has a shot of espresso in it. I was bouncing off the walls! I do enjoy them, but I can only have one if I’ve had no other coffee that day.
My current caffeine of choice is a soy latte.
My favorite place for caffeine is any independent coffee place, though I do often go to the Barriques on Park because it’s close to my house.
I wish coffee houses had been a thing when I was in grad school—I think I would have been a more creative person. Then the only places to study were the library and at home. But a coffee house feels so energetic and productive. I really like the atmosphere they create and wish I could have tapped into that during my student days.
Reese, because I think she’s harnessed her star power to do some amazing things—I loved “Big Little Lies”—and because I think she’d be fun to hang out with.
Gloria because she’s the founding mother of the women’s movement. I’d love to talk to her—or even just be in the same room.
World problem that could be solved with the right amount of caffeine: On an organizational level, I’d pick having the clarity to identify and find a funder who could ensure Safe Harbor’s financial stability. Think of what we could accomplish if we didn’t have to spend so much of our time working to keep the doors open.
On a more micro level, I’d love for everyone to be able to figure out self-care. In order for us to make a difference we have to be able to replenish ourselves.