A STORYCORPS STUDIOS SPECIAL COLLECTION

As part of the Voices of Freedom initiative, the Office on Trafficking in Persons partnered with StoryCorps Studios to collect oral histories through conversations with those who have informed, shaped, and contributed to the successes of the anti-trafficking field over the past two decades.

To learn more contact: [email protected]

Creating social change on entrenched issues like human trafficking takes decades and often requires sustained vigilance across generations.  Our collaboration with StoryCorps provides a platform for survivors and allied professionals to pause, reflect, and share their personal journeys towards progress over the last 20 years.  Just as legacies of historical injustices contribute to human trafficking today, these stories reveal the influences and lessons learned from intergenerational struggles for justice.

— Katherine Chon, Director of the Office on Trafficking in Persons

All Voices of Freedom Interviews

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45:39
Amy Richard and Alyse Nelson

Amy Richard (55) talks with her friend and colleague Alyse Nelson (47) about the evolution of her work in anti-trafficking. She recalls her work in the early 90s conducting interviews with human trafficking survivors through a fellowship, and explains how...

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56:04
Jeri Jimenez and Elizabeth Pfenning

Jeri Jimenez (60) speaks with her colleague Elizabeth "Beth" Pfenning (34) about the experiences that have led her to become a voice for change for survivors of human trafficking. She shares about her experiences of sexual abuse in childhood and...

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42:00
Neha Misra, Janie Chuang, and Anne Gallagher

Colleagues in the anti-trafficking field, Neha Misra (51), Janie Chuang (47), and Anne Gallagher (57), all share their "lightbulb moments" of memories that shifted their perspectives in their work. They discuss the complexities of human trafficking and how it's understood...

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46:24
Roxanne Murdock and Carolyn DeFord

Carolyn DeFord (47) speaks with friend and colleague, Roxanne Murdock (36) about how she got started in anti-trafficking work, working with MMIW (Missing & Murdered Indigenous Women), the strong connection to domestic violence, & the need coordinated community effort in...

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42:51
Suleman Masood and Robert Lung

Suleman Masood (27) shares motivation for his pursuing an education in law based on a lived experience in labor trafficking with friend Robert Lung (50).

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45:36
Holly Gibbs and Melissa Snow

Holly Gibbs (43) shares how life experience led to present work within the anti-trafficking movement with friend and colleague Melissa Snow (42).

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31:39
Jess Torres and Susie Baldwin

Jess Torres (35) talks with their friend, colleague and mentor, Dr. Susie Baldwin (54), about their work in anti-trafficking and the vision they have for how the work should evolve. Jess talks about some of their mentors, shares proud moments...

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53:47
Kara Doan and Marian Hatcher

Marian Hatcher [no age given] shares with her friend Kara Doan (46) details of her journey within the anti-trafficking movement and how she made incredible use of a second chance after being a victim of domestic violence and trafficking abuse.

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41:36
Michelle Sauve and Katherine Chon

Michelle Sauve [no age given] talks with her colleague Katherine Chon [no age given] about her childhood, her family, and how her childhood memories and family roots in Native American communities led her to pursue a career supporting Native American...

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43:35
Gonzalo Martinez de Vedia and Kathleen Sexsmith

Gonzalo Martinez de Vedia (33) talks with his friend and colleague Kathleen Sexsmith (36) about his work advocating for farmers' rights and immigrant rights as it relates to human trafficking work. He talks about how he came to the work,...

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43:13
Julissa Ponce and Katherine Chon

Julissa Ponce (38) speaks with her colleague in anti-trafficking work, Katherine Chon [no age given], about her family's experience with labor exploitation, the impact of her parents' advocacy in her life, and the loss of her father this past year....

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35:31
Jose Alfaro and Shannon Sigamoni

Jose Alfaro (30) talks with his colleague Shannon Sigamoni (28) about coming out to his family, getting kicked out of his home, and searching for acceptance. He discusses how he found resilience in himself while he was forced into sex...

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42:46
Makini Chisolm-Straker and Katherine Chon

Dr. Makini Chisolm-Straker [no age given] discuss her role as a ER physician and her pathway towards serving trafficked individuals within the healthcare community with colleague, Katherine Chon [no age given].

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38:31
Kaleilani Grant and Nicole Farmer

Kaleilani Grant (38) talks to her best friend, Nicole Farmer (39), about her faith in God through many life obstacles. She talks about the period of life that she was forced into sex work and talks about how she is...

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43:24
Erik Gray and Robin Miller

Erik Gray (30) and friend and colleague Robin Miller (49) have a conversation about how they met, their work within the anti-trafficking community, the sense of value in their chosen field and gaps in service provided to those violated in...

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47:13
Kate Keisel and Cristal Mills

Kate Keisel (35) has a conversation with her colleague Cristal Mills (38) about their work, their friendship, and the importance of resilience.