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Panel: Building a Career in Social Justice

  • Northwestern, Program of African Studies 620 Library Place Evanston, IL, 60201 United States (map)

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Topics for the third round of panels include gender inequity, domestic abuse and sexual abuse & how to create safe spaces for marginalized identities. Panelists will discuss their personal and professional life paths and how they've overcome barriers while transforming into community leaders. How do we navigate expectations of women in oppressive systems?

Want to submit a question to the panel? E-mail moderator at


Kate Harrington-Rosen is a queer femme originally from Boston, MA. In her day job, Kate manages the TransWorks Employment Program at Chicago House and Social Service Agency. TransWorks provides free, comprehensive career coaching, job readiness workshops, and mentorship opportunities for trans and gender non-conforming adults in Chicago, as well as cultural competency trainings for local employers. Kate has worked in social services for nine years, providing direct service to clients and facilitating community trainings about sexual assault, sex trafficking, crisis intervention, and LGBTQ cultural competency. Kate was named one of the Windy City Times’ “30 Under 30” in 2016. She is the co-creator of The Not Sorry Project and The Femmetopia Collective, both community art projects that aim to give space and voice to women, femmes, and other marginalized groups.


Molly has been working in social services for eight years providing direct service through crisis intervention, case management, and prevention and education, as well as serving in administrative roles which help support the essentials to running effective, mission-driven organizations. With a commitment to systemic change and social justice, the bulk of her work has been centered around domestic violence and youth development. Currently, she is the Institutional Giving Manager at Between Friends, a nonprofit dedicated to breaking the cycle of domestic violence and building a community free of abuse. Here she designs, implements, and manages a strategic, comprehensive, and proactive plans focused on expanding, enhancing, and diversifying funding streams and building relationships with individual, foundation and corporate partners in order to secure financial support. In her work with grant development and management, language matters which connects deeply to Molly's passion for and belief in the power of language, narrative, and creative voice as a form of empowerment, healing, and resistance. 


Sharmain is currently an undergraduate at Northwestern University, where she is working towards her B.S. in Environmental Science and Human Development and Psychological Services, with a concentration in diasporic feminisms. 

Sharmain lives and breathes the revolution, and is involved with organizations both on and off campus that aim to create a safer and more inhabitable world for marginalized identities. She believes strongly in transformative justice and dismantling oppressive structures, and you can often find her doing work for organizations like Sexual Health and Assault Peer Education (SHAPE), Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP), and Showing Up For Racial Justice (SURJ).

Sharmain believes strongly in creating new models of community, specifically ones that abolish prisons, subvert capitalism, and disarm and dismantle the police, with the ultimate goal of creating a radically different society. She is invested in new forms of liberation and solidarity rooted within love and confrontation.

The panels are open to volunteers, host families and Expanding Lives' supporters.

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Later Event: July 29
Closing Ceremony