Catherine Hoke does not know the meaning of "giving up". It's a chicken:egg relationship when applying this tenacity as a lens for her life. It's unclear if her own self perseverance birthed her relentless drive to reform those who have ended up incarcerated or vice versa. Regardless, she is one of the few people I've met in my life that has one passion volume setting -- and it's 11.
She leads from a place of commonality, generating compassion like no one I've ever seen. We were an instant match for the way we see the world: with a tender, sober, intense urgency for reckoning and forgiveness of all of our individual and collective flaws/gifts, gifts/flaws.
That's why I've followed and worked with Cat for the last few years as she is forced to reinvent herself and her mission when new road blocks come up. Our teamwork is relentless in the fight for reconciliation and reform.
These images are from Pelican Bay State Prison. What is known to be where the worst of the worst criminals in California dwell. Cat has infiltrated a seemingly impervious facade of toughness, She has transmuted their frustrations and mistrust into silly, child-like softness that has to be seen to truly understand.
These men have put in the tremendous self reflection, difficult forgiveness, compassion, and education it take to ACTUALLY reform. They are on a new trajectory from their seemingly predetermined destiny while at the same time teaching high profile venture capitalists and entrepreneurs about their own journey of the same tasks. It ties us all together beautifully, and that's when the deep healing happens.
Forever grateful to Cat and the incredible folks that can't seem to stay away from her and her mission.