Today we want to introduce our beloved Cara Thaxton, who besides serving as the manager of program development at Catharsis Productions, she is also one of our educators. Cara Thaxton was born and raised in Chicago, IL surrounded by laughter, love and chaos. Cara has over fifteen years of experience working for social justice, both in Chicago and the San Francisco Bay Area. Her work earned her the 2003 Advocate of the Year award from the State’s Attorney’s Office. Cara has educated thousands of individuals, from elementary school students to the media, on rape prevention and intervention, with a special focus on the LGBTQ community and hate crimes.
CP: What is your favorite part about working at Catharsis Productions?
Cara: The people I work with – we are all guided by the same fight for ending sexual/interpersonal violence and by social justice. Also my colleagues come from all different work backgrounds which means that we are constantly learning and teaching each other. It’s a free flowing idea/thought exchange.
CP: What is a common misconception students/people have about the topics you teach?
Cara: That I believe that all man are rapists/bad. I think that is crap – I know tons of amazing men. Also that men cannot be victims and women perpetrators.
CP: Tell us something new that you have learned since you’ve been working as an educator for Catharsis Productions
Cara: How to be a more effective educator – more information on adult learning theory, implicit bias, just world theory.
CP: What’s most surprising to you about your work as an educator?
Cara: Going out and talking to so many folks about a topic most would rather ignore has shown me how amazing folks are – they are passionate about ending interpersonal violence. It fills my proverbial hope (gas) tank. Those are the folks I remember when I have bad days.
CP: Any curious facts about you?
Cara: I was a Sunday school teacher in my youth.
I fell into the armadillo cage at Lincoln Park Zoo when I was 3 years old and cracked my head open on the armadillos house (which was actually a dog house). They treated me at the children’s zoo behind the glass wall (where they changed the monkey’s diapers etc) and then off to Children’s Memorial Hospital to be put in a papoose and stitched up while the 4 other kids my sisters had at the zoo played in the waiting area. To this day I still get armadillos as gifts and articles about them making their way up north to scare me. Thanks to Jen I did pet one a couple years ago the feud ended.