Black Life: Cat Brooks
Programmed by Chika Okoye and David Brazil
Cat Brooks performs Tasha, a one-woman show loosely based on the 2015 murder of Natasha McKenna, a thirty-eight-year-old woman living with schizophrenia, while she was in custody in Virginia’s Fairfax County Jail. This compelling examination of the intersection of race, gender, mental health, and policing is directed by Ayodele Nzinga and is a Salon Series finalist.
Cat Brooks is an artivist and mother who has spent her life working on many social justice issues. In 2013, Brooks cofounded the Anti Police-Terror Project (APTP), whose mission is to rapidly respond to—and eradicate—state violence in communities of color. APTP has successfully developed a model for first response to police violence that is currently being replicated across California and the country. Brooks is also the executive director of the Justice Teams Network, a project in partnership with Black Lives Matter cofounder Patrisse Cullors that supports organizations and individuals across the state who are working to rapidly respond to state violence in their communities. She is a member of ONYX, the Black Power Network, and Black Lives Matter-Bay Area, and was one of the Black Friday 14, a group of black activists who locked down the West Oakland BART station on Black Friday in 2014. You can listen to Brooks on KPFA as the cohost of the morning drivetime radio show UpFront.