AIDS, Social Justice, and the Politics of Transformation

THU, SEP 30, 2010

Kevin Cranston, Director of the Massachusetts Bureau of Infectious Disease; Dazon Dixon Diallo, President of SisterLove; Julie Davids, Founder and Co-Director of CHAMP (Community HIV/AIDS Mobilization Project); and Guillermo Chacón, President and CEO of the Latino AIDS Commission converse with moderator Rebecca Haag, President and CEO of AIDS Action Committee about the ongoing problem of HIV transmission.

As death from AIDS becomes less common, AIDS service organizations must transform their services and prevention programs to follow a more radical approach. Why are there 56,000 new infections in the U.S. every year when we know what causes HIV, how it’s transmitted, and how to treat it? Join us to discuss how to stop the spread of HIV by addressing the underlying social injustices of racism, sexism, homophobia, violence, substance abuse, and poverty.

(Presented in collaboration with Old South Meeting House, a museum and National Historic Landmark dedicated to the free exchange of ideas, as part of the Partners in Public Dialogue series.)

+ BIO: Kevin Cranston

Kevin Cranston is the Director of the Bureau of Infectious Disease at the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. For the past 15 years, Cranston has devoted his career to developing and implementing educational programs for the prevention of infectious disease, specifically HIV in Massachusetts. He is the senior manager responsible for the administrative, financial, policy and programmatic decisions related to the core functions of the Massachusetts Bureau. Cranston received his BA in Theology at Boston College and his MA in Divinity at Harvard University.

+ BIO: Rebecca Haag

Rebecca Haag became the President and CEO of AIDS Action Committee of Massachusetts in April of 2003. Before coming to AIDS Action, Haag had worked as a senior manager in a variety of corporate and government settings. Most recently, she was Vice President of Professional Services at Wheelhouse Corporation; Senior Vice President of WorkFamily Directions, where she managed elder and child care programs on behalf of blue chip corporations; and a Senior Vice President at Hill, Holliday where she managed human resources for this marketing and communications consulting firm.

Haag had served on the board of AIDS Action since 1996, both as treasurer, vice president and a member of the executive committee. Haag has served as a board member and volunteer at several non-profit organizations, including the Center for Women & Enterprise, Bright Horizons, the Women's Leadership Institute of Wells College, the Human Rights Campaign Fund and the Cambridge YWCA. A graduate of Wells College, Haag received her MBA from Boston University.

+ BIO: Dazon Dixon Diallo

Dazon Dixon Diallo is the founder and President of SisterLove, established in 1989, the first women’s HIV/AIDS organization in the southeastern United States. She is also adjunct faculty in women’s health at Morehouse School of Medicine’s Masters of Public Health Program in Atlanta, Georgia. Diallo is also a founding board member of SisterSong Women of Color Reproductive Justice Collective. She currently chairs the Fulton County HIV/AIDS Services Planning Council (i.e. the Ryan White Council) and the Steering Committee of the Global Campaign for Microbicides, and co-chairs the Community Advisory Board of the HOPE Clinic, Emory University’s HIV Vaccine and Microbicides Research Center.

Diallo has coordinated delegations of African American women and our allies to Brazil, China, Egypt, Jamaica, Senegal, South Africa, and Uganda. She has received numerous awards and recognitions over the 25 years she has been working in HIV/AIDS and women’s human rights. Diallo holds a master’s degree in public health from the University of Alabama at Birmingham and a bachelor’s degree from Spelman College.

+ BIO: Julie Davids

Julie Davids is Co-Director at the Community HIV/AIDS Mobilization Project (CHAMP), after serving as the group's founding Executive Director and Senior Consultant. On behalf of CHAMP, she coordinates the HIV Prevention Justice Alliance (HIV PJA), a national network of over 70 groups building a unified, effective movement for HIV prevention in the United States.

Davids is a two-time past co-chair of the Federal AIDS Policy Partnership, a founding member of the Coalition for a National AIDS Strategy, and an advisor to the U.S. Positive Women's Network. She also is an External Expert advisor to the Strategic Working Group of the Division of AIDS at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) at NIH. After learning from the leaders of ACT UP Philadelphia, she stayed with them for the next 14 years. She founded CHAMP in 2003 after a year-long Charles H. Revson fellowship at Columbia University, where she developed an analysis of the history and future of HIV/AIDS as a social struggle tied to economic justice, racial justice and human rights.

In her local community of Cranston, RI, she serves on the board of the Providence Youth and Student Movement (PrYSM), non-profit Southeast Asian youth-led organization whose vision is end all forms of violence.

+ BIO: Guillermo Chacon

As President of the Latino Commission on AIDS, Guillermo Chacon has a broad history in fighting the disease on a variety of levels within his community. Chacon pioneered the First National Latino/Hispanic AIDS Leadership Summit in 2008. He played a key role in launching the National Latino AIDS Awareness Day in 2003. As founder of a Latino religious leadership program that has been running for the past 14 years, Chacon initiated the Commission’s New York Citywide initiative to build health ministries at churches/congregations in low-income Latino communities that provide much needed HIV prevention and health promotion. In December 2009, he was re-elected to the leadership of the Federal AIDS Policy Partnership.

Chacon now serves as the principal media spokesperson for the Commission in the promotion of HIV/AIDS education and prevention. He is also board member for The Salvadorean American National Network, Salud Latina/Latino Health in Chicago, Solidaridad Humana in Long Island and the New York Immigration Coalition in New York State. He has studied teaching at the National University of El Salvador and is an undergraduate student at Fordham University in the Organizational Leadership Program.

Partner
Ford Hall Forum
Series
FRONTLINE: Age of Aids Series
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