Dr. Kate Price

Dr. Kate Price is a Visiting Scholar at the Wellesley Centers for Women, a gender-based research institute at Wellesley College. She is also an alumni scholar at the Brandeis University Women’s Studies Research Institute, and a senior research associate at a health and human services firm outside of Boston. Dr. Price is also a familial child sex trafficking survivor. From the time she was a toddler until she was 11 years old, Dr. Price’s father sold her for sex to truckers traveling along Interstate 80, which ran just a few miles from her tiny Appalachian hometown in central Pennsylvania. Dr. Price earned her Ph.D. in sociology from the University of Massachusetts Boston and completed her dissertation on state-level legislative decisions that prevent commercially sexually exploited minors from being arrested and/or prosecuted for prostitution in the United States. She also received her master’s degree in Gender/Cultural Studies at Simmons University in 2005.

Dr. Price is an internationally-recognized child sex trafficking expert. Her work has influenced the passage of state-level children’s human rights legislation, including preventing the involuntary detention of CSEC victims while they receive support services in Florida and banning child marriage in Massachusetts. Her perspective as a CSEC survivor provides an intersectional analysis of how systemic race, class, and gender inequalities fuel CSEC. Like Dr. Price, children of low socioeconomic status are particularly at risk for being commercially sexually exploited in rural and urban communities where economic opportunities and resources are limited. Dr. Price frequently lectures on her research and survivor advocacy at academic conferences, universities, and non-governmental organization meetings.

Her work has been published in scholarly journals, including the Journal of Interpersonal Violence and William and Mary’s Journal of Women and the Law.  Dr. Price is a member of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) Child Sex Trafficking Expert Working Group, and a founding Advisory Board member of the U.S. branch of End Child Prostitution and Trafficking (ECPAT-USA). She received the 2017 Mariam K. Chamberlain Dissertation Award from the International Centers for Research on Women (ICRW), as well as an American Association of University Women (AAUW) 2018-2019 Dissertation Fellowship.         

Dr. Price has also worked extensively with trauma pioneers Dr. Bessel van der Kolk and Dr. Judith Herman. Dr. Price is a patient of van der Kolk’s for nearly 30 years. He refers to her (under a pseudonym) as the “EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) virtuoso” in his New York Times best-selling book The Body Keeps the Score due to her ability to heal using this cutting-edge modality more quickly than any other person he has ever seen. Herman has also quoted Dr. Price in her presentations as well as in her forthcoming book about perspectives on justice of gender-based violence survivors.

 On July 31, 2022 the article “Kate Price Remembers Something Terrible” appeared in the Globe Sunday Magazine. The story, written by Boston Globe journalist Janelle Nanos, chronicles Dr. Price and Nanos’s decade-long collaboration to investigate her childhood sex trafficking history in Appalachia. A story of unparalleled resilience and determination, Dr. Price’s life is filled with moments of heart-wrenching survivor and tender perseverance. Her expertise sheds light on the complex crisis of child sex trafficking and the story of her journey is a testament to grit and resilience.


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