Kathe Karlson, born and raised in New York City attended public schools. Currently retired from the NYC Department of Education as a Bilingual Licensed Social Worker. She worked individually and in groups with youth and families and has done community education around HIV/AIDS (in communities and in prisons).

Kathe ran a special shelter for women returning to the community from prison hoping to reunite with their children. In her work with others, she has tried to contextualize the experiences to reduce personalizing, individualizing, and internalizing racism, poverty, and sexism, the systemic realities that exist all around us.