Catharine Kessack, MSW

Executive Director

Catharine Kessack is the Executive Director of VAST. She is a social worker with her MSW in international social work and community development. She has worked with vulnerable populations for over 20 years throughout California, New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. She has a strong passion for human rights and social justice. Catharine enjoys traveling and has participated in field work in Costa Rica at the UN Mandated University for Peace Human Rights department, in Cambodia at New Hope for Cambodian Children, and in Zambia at Hope Community School.

Joasia Karwatka, BSW

Volunteer Coordinator

Joasia Karwatka is an MSW student at The University of Pennsylvania in the Social Work School of Policy and Practice, pursuing a clinical track. She received her BSW from the University of Valley Forge with a minor in Counseling. Joasia is focused on advocating for social justice, human rights, and survivors of sexual exploitation.

Sandra Sabbatini, MSN

Speakers Bureau Coordinator

Sandra Sabbatini is a registered nurse, certified in emergency nursing and nursing professional development. She has an MSN in nursing education and recently retired from Lehigh Valley Hospital as an educator for the 17th and Chew Street Emergency Department, the Emergency Department Float Pool and the Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners. She is a volunteer speaker for the Valley Against Sex Trafficking educating nursing, healthcare providers as well as local and statewide organizations about human trafficking. Sandra is currently the coordinator for the Speakers Bureau and in retirement she works at Lehigh Valley Health Network, Department of Education in the Simulation Center as a standardized patient.

Tashina Khabbaz, M.Ed.

Education Specialist

Tashina Khabbaz is a doctoral student at Lehigh University in the Department of Educational Leadership. In addition to a Bachelor’s in Psychology and a Master’s in Education, Khabbaz holds certificates in Comparative and International Education, and in Technology Use in Schools. Khabbaz is the Education Specialist for the Valley Against Sex Trafficking. Her research interests target racial inequality within sex trafficking as well as sex trafficking preparation and response within the K-12 sector.