jessica drake is presenting The Facts About Measure B and How It Impacts Us All, Slut Shaming in Sex Positive Communities and the CatalystCon Opening Keynote Plenary Address: Sparking Communication in Sexuality, Activism and Acceptance. Check out jessica's bio here. How do you see yourself as a catalyst for change? I really think we all have the potential to be catalysts in our own ways. Personally, I come from years in the adult industry as a contract performer, writer, and director for one of the top companies, Wicked Pictures. First, I realize I come equipped with a large fan base to get my message out, and I use this platform to help spread knowledge about sexuality and to encourage people to be open and comfortable communicating their needs and desires. At the same time, I also combat the stereotype pervading the very industry making me who I am. From my line of instructional DVDs to lobbying against Measure B and everything in between, I love and defend the adult industry, while challenging the misconceptions many people have about it. I change opinions, often just one at a time. Who or what was a catalyst for you? I recognized very early in my career the need for more realistic sex education - porn does have an entertainment value, but for some, it is their sole reference for information. At a store signing, I had a woman come up to me worried she wasn't always "ready" for anal sex the way she saw it happening in porn. It made me much more aware of the public perception, and it showed me the need to portray a more accurate representation of sexual experiences. This is but one of the many catalysts leading me down my path. What do you feel are some of the biggest challenges or concerns facing us in the field of sexuality right now? The biggest one is the stigma surrounding it. I'm not even talking about the stigma of my industry, but of sex in general. In a world where sex is supposedly so "mainstream," the field of sexuality is still cloaked in shame. Most all of us have sex… why can't we talk about it? An international challenge in the field of sexuality right now is the educating of women in impoverished countries who have no real resources. Lack of HIV/AIDS awareness, family planning assistance, female genital mutilation, STI education - these things are only worsening the outlook of underdeveloped countries. If we strive to educate women, we can potentially impact future generations and in time, truly bring about change. What do you feel are some of the most important/valuable positive changes that have been made in the world of sexuality in the past year? I think the emergence of conferences like CatalystCon, which bring together like-minded people for the sake of discussion and progress brings about change in a direct way. When I attended last year, I had no idea what to expect, or how motivated and inspired I would be afterward. Why do you feel it is important to bring the topic of your session, Slut Shaming in Sex Positive Communities, to CatalystCon East? I am honored to be speaking on a few different panels with some amazingly iconic, inspirational people, but "Slut Shaming" hits very close to home… actually, it dive-bombs into my living room. I won't give away the ending, but I'll say it will be a very insightful panel. Share one unknown (or little known) fact about yourself. I abhor wet socks almost as much as Dee and the Evil Sluts love Nutella. ; ) Learn more about all our amazing speakers here. Register for CatalystCon East here.