KATHARINE GIN is an artist, educator, and activist based in San Francisco.
She co-founded and is currently the executive director of Immigrants Rising
, a non-profit that empowers undocumented young people with the resources and support needed to get an education, pursue careers, and build a brighter future for themselves and their community. Immigrants Rising has been awarded a prestigious San Francisco Foundation Community Leadership Award
for its extraordinary work to strengthen communities and exemplary commitment to improving human relations in the Bay Area.
Katharine currently serves on University of California President Janet Napolitano's Advisory Group of Undocumented Students, the Board of Directors of the California Immigrant Policy Center (CIPC)
, and the National Advisory Board of TheDream.US
. For nearly 15 years, she was also an advisor to the Nelson Fund
at The Silicon Valley Community Foundation, where she oversaw the fund's philanthropic investments in arts and education.
Katharine's artistic and educational work with youth has been published widely in local and national publications, including a full-page article in The New York Times, a front page story in The Wall Street Journal
, and a seven-page spread in Bedford/St. Martin's award-winning textbook, Seeing & Writing 3
Her documentary film, DON'T STOP ME NOW
, features four undocumented immigrant youth who dream of going to college in the United States. Embraced by students, educators, and immigration activists, the film has been screened at film festivals, schools, galleries, and community organizations throughout the country.
Katharine was the lead artist for THIS PLACE CALLED POETRY
, a year-long multimedia art project that features 11 talented youth poets. In collaboration with musician and composer Kjell Nordeson
, Katharine created 11 short films
and numerous audio portraits about the youth poets, which she installed at the San Francisco Arts Commission Gallery
. San Francisco WritersCorps
commissioned Katharine to lead this project in celebration of its 15th Anniversary.
After receiving her BA in Architecture from Yale University, Katharine started Hot Shots, a photography and media literacy program that served hundreds of low-income children in Connecticut housing projects. She has since developed innovative arts and writing programs for at-risk youth in public schools, after-school and summer enrichment programs, detention centers
, residential facilities, and community centers. She holds a MFA from the Creative Writing Program at the University of Oregon, where she taught advanced undergraduate courses in creative writing.
Splash image (to the left): Part of Katharine's photo-text series "Is it good, friend?"