My name is Anna Rathje. As the granddaughter of a community organizer, and the child of a pastor and educator, I hold the belief that our lives are meant to be lived for more than ourselves. That we are, in fact, part of a much greater story than our own.
I grew up in the midwest, first in Jackson, Michigan (home to the state's penitentiary) and then St. Louis, Missouri. I learned from neighbors, classmates, and church friends about vast lived experiences, and in turn my own privilege. I participated in intentional intercultural dialogue from a young age, went to college to study the way words are used to inspire action, took a few detours, and have ended up as an assistant at the Massachusetts Office of the Attorney General. This journey has allowed me to both sit with the formerly incarcerated and prosecutors. I am deeply grateful for each person with whom I have crossed paths. As I continue to learn and grow, I am honored to have found a home in Inside the Sun. A group of people who sit with and struggle with the complexity of our current age and the carceral state. Mostly, I am grateful for their vision of something greater than what is.
I believe that joining Inside the Sun is truly the best way to honor my familial history of standing for the many, for all. It is the gift of a lifetime to join in such incredible work.