Kari is amongst the first generation of In Progress artists from 1994. Now she is a video producer and editor for the Baha'i and resides in Chicago. She is one of the reason In Progress exists today.
1. Considering all your experience with In Progress, what is one achievement that you personally are most proud of? Why is this achievement important to you? What does it represent?: What I am most proud of: my career as a creative content producer, writer, video editor and storyteller.
But even beyond the 'titles' or descriptions of 'what' I do, I am most proud of a willingness to follow my own path in the world, rather than paths others agree we should all follow.
These to items are important to me, because I view career or livelihood as one primary vehicle for both discovering and expressing my purpose, and contributing my best to the world.
2. What did it take for us at In Progress to achieve this accomplishment? What strengths do we have that helped us succeed?: I came into contact with Kristine Sorensen before In Progress had a name or location, when I was a student at St. Paul Central High School in the mid-1990s. She ran an after school program for the girls who were enrolled in Central's TV production class. Prior to 1992, no girls had ever participated in Central's TV program in its entire 20 year history. My two friends and I took the class in 1992 and by 1994 there were at least 9 of us producing alongside our male classmates.
This after school girl's program allowed me more time and space to explore my passion for editing and storytelling. During that time Kristine not only helped draw out what I wanted to say and how I wanted to say it, she also routinely made me set-up the analog editing equipment, instilling in me the notion that any problem can be solved with patience and perseverance, even a 'technical' one.
Over the next couple of years, I participated in other programs at Kristine's urging and met other local media makers through her. It was Kristine's encouragement that led me to choose film school as the next obvious step for me after high school.
Twenty years later, and in the midst of a career transition, I routinely consult with Kristine. She continues to whole-heartedly embrace my unique 'story' or values, desires and hopes, and encourages me to pave my own path, even if I don't see one like it in the world yet. She's also conversant in process - even step two of the creative process where we collect lots of input without knowing what will eventually take shape. As I articulate what I believe will be elements of the next phase of my career, Kristine is comfortable talking about notions, thoughts, intuitive insights, desires and other elements that may not come neatly wrapped in a package yet.
3. What do you think makes In Progress unique? What 2-3 things are at our very core that make us stand out from other arts programs or youth development programs?: Ah! It's a hub! Digital arts might be the draw, but the real art is the coming together of so many people, from so many backgrounds. It could easily be called a cross roads or beehive of Twin Cities' creativity.
4. As you think about In Progress, what do you value most? What keeps you engaged here?: The intersection of heart, desire, creativity, story and heritage all in one place.