Members & Staff
The Council may have up to 25 members, including the Chair. Members and the chair are selected by the Secretary from authorities with particular expertise in, or knowledge of, matters concerning HIV and AIDS. In addition, the Council includes ex officio members from relevant HHS components as deemed appropriate by the Secretary or designee.
Council members are invited to serve for overlapping terms of up to four years; terms are contingent upon the authorized continuation of the Council. A member can serve after the expiration of their term until their successor has taken office and/or until notified in writing that their term has ended or expired, but no longer than 180 days.
Nancy Mahon, JD
PACHA Chairperson – Sworn in December 2, 2011
Senior Vice President, M·A·C Cosmetics
Global Executive Director, M·A·C AIDS Fund
As a senior vice president at M•A•C and Global Executive Director of the M•A•C AIDS Fund, Nancy serves as a member of the brand’s senior management team while overseeing the strategic direction and day-to-day operation of the M•A•C AIDS Fund. Under Nancy’s leadership, the Fund has further refined and enhanced its giving, taking on larger grant initiatives including the Caribbean Initiative, while at the same time continuing to fund the grassroots service-based charities that the Fund has supported in the past. Currently, the Fund gives away over $18 million annually throughout the world particularly the 65 countries in which M•A•C has affiliates.
Ada Adimora, MD, MPH
Professor, School of Medicine, Professor of Epidemiology, Gillings School of Global Public Health University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Dr. Adaora Adimora is a physician-epidemiologist with specialty training and extensive clinical experience in infectious diseases, particularly HIV, both in NC and NYC. She received her medical degree from the Yale University School of Medicine and completed specialty training at Montefiore Hospital in the Bronx, NY. Prior to coming to UNC, she served as Assistant Chief for Science of the NC Health Department's Communicable Disease Control Section. Dr. Adimora has published the first national data on concurrent partnerships in U.S. women in the National Survey of Family Growth and a conceptual analysis of contextual factors that promote concurrent sexual partnerships among African Americans. She is completing the analysis of a population-based case-control study of newly-reported heterosexually acquired HIV among African Americans in North Carolina, with an emphasis on the rural, eastern region of the state. Dr. Adimora is the recipient of a career development award for analysis of data on concurrent sexual partnerships.
A fellow of the American College of Physicians and the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA), she Chairs the Women at Risk Committee for the NIH’s HIV Prevention Trials Network Women at Risk Committee and is Vice Chair of the HIV Medicine Association. She also serves on the US Department of Health and Human Services Antiretroviral Treatment Guidelines Panel, the editorial board of Sexually Transmitted Diseases, and the National Institutes of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Advisory Council. Dr. Adimora received her MD from Yale and MPH in epidemiology from the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health. She is board certified in internal medicine and infectious diseases. In 2009 The Root (a publication of the Washington Post Company) named Dr. Adimora to its inaugural list of The Root 100, its recognition of “established and emerging African American leaders who are making extraordinary contributions.”
Senior Policy Advisor, National Black Gay Men’s Advocacy Coalition;
Mr. Baker also serves as a Technical Advisor at FHI 360. For the past two decades, Mr. Baker has worked in the local and Federal Government sectors, local and national community-based advocacy and service delivery and on a variety of workgroups to advance the nation’s response to the HIV epidemic. Mr. Baker is a person living with AIDS; he was diagnosed with HIV in 1985.
Mr. Basaviah most recently completed serving for one year as a Bill Clinton fellow in India through the American Indian Foundation (AIF). He worked in the HIV/AIDS sector in South India with the South India AIDS Action Program. Prior to joining the AIF, Mr. Basaviah worked as a program manager at the National Centers on Sexuality in San Francisco; he also worked with the Speakers Bureau of Communities United Against Violence.
Ms. Averitt was diagnosed with HIV in 1988. She founded the Well Project, which is a not-for-profit organization that works to change the course of the HIV/AIDS pandemic through a unique and comprehensive focus on women. The organization works to develop new resources to educate, nurture, and support the community of HIV+ women, their caregivers, and their health care providers. The Well Project is administered by HIV+ women. Prior to founding the Well Project, Ms. Averitt spent years advocating research for HIV treatment and serving as a public speaker. Her knowledge and expertise in HIV/AIDS ranges from general HIV awareness and pathogenesis of HIV disease to complex treatment-related topics.
Senior Strategist, Transgender Law Center
Cecilia Chung is nationally recognized as a civil rights leader, advocating for HIV/AIDS awareness and care, LGBT equality, social justice and human rights. She is currently a Health Commissioner in San Francisco where she is the first trans woman appointed to the position by Mayor Ed Lee. Cecilia was also the first trans woman and first person living openly with HIV elected Chair to the San Francisco Human Rights Commission where she has served for over seven years. An immigrant from Hong Kong, Cecilia has lived in San Francisco for over 20 years where she has worked locally and internationally to advance equality and justice. During that time, she has broken ground in a number of ways including: being the first transgender woman and first Asian to be elected to lead the Board of Directors of the San Francisco Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Celebration; the first transgender woman and first person living openly with HIV to Chair the San Francisco Human Rights Commission; and, an architect of the nation’s most ambitious publicly funded program addressing economic justice within the transgender community.
For almost two decades, she has worked to advance equality and justice both locally and internationally. In 1994 she was a member of the Transgender Discrimination Taskforce, which released a groundbreaking report by the San Francisco Human Rights Commission, documenting widespread discrimination against trans people. The report led the City to adopt many pioneering anti-discrimination ordinances and policies. She is the former Deputy Director of the Transgender Law Center, has also served on a number of planning bodies, including the San Francisco HIV Health Services Planning Council, and was a trainer of Community Planning for the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). In 2001, she was elected President of the Board of Directors of San Francisco Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Celebration, becoming the first Asian and first trans gender women to hold the position, and she lead the Board to a new standard of inclusion and excellence. In 2004, as a founding producer of Trans March, she helped organize one of the world’s largest annual trans events.
Cecilia has dedicated herself to ending stigma, discrimination, and violence in all communities.
Former Director, AIDS Institute, New York State Department of Health/Retired
Mr. Cruz has been employed in progressively responsible positions in the AIDS Institute for approximately 20 years. He assumed responsibility for the leadership position approximately two years ago. In his current position, Mr. Cruz provides oversight for the development, evaluation, and delivery of prevention programs; health care and support services; the establishment of clinical standards for care; education of health providers and the public, and guidance for regional and statewide planning. In addition to his employment at the state level, Mr. Cruz also serves, at the national level, as a member of the Executive Committee for the National Alliance of State and Territorial AIDS Directors (NASTAD). NASTAD represents the AIDS directors in every state and territory that administer both state and federal funding for HIV/AIDS prevention, care and treatment, and can include housing. Mr. Cruz’s roles in the public and private sector require that he stay abreast of changes in existing HIV/AIDS policies. Mr. Cruz is a person living with AIDS, he understands the perspective of persons living with the virus, the providers who care for them, and has established strong, collaborative relationships with officials at the state, local and national level who must develop the policies and programs that guide service provisions.
Ernest Darkoh, MD, MPH
Founding Partner, BroadReach Healthcare, LLC; Washington, DC
Dr. Darkoh is an internationally recognized expert in global health program management, strategic planning, health systems development and large scale treatment program implementation. Dr. Darkoh has served as an advisor to numerous governments, including Botswana, China, Ethiopia, and South Africa in the development of their public and private sector HIV/AIDS programs.
Kevin Frost, Chief Executive Officer, The Foundation for AIDS Research (amfAR), New York, New York
Mr. Frost joined the staff of amfAR in 1994; he has occupied his current position since 2007. Prior to joining amfAR, Mr. Frost worked as an inpatient care coordinator of the AIDS program at Bellevue Hospital in New York City.
Patricia Garcia, MD
Professor, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology; Northwestern University; Chicago, IL
Dr. Garcia is specialized in maternal and fetal medicine. Her research interests include epidemiology of STD and HIV/AIDS and interventions in STD and HIV/AIDS.
Robert Greenwald, JD
Clinical Professor of Law and Director, Center for Health Law and Policy Research; Harvard Law School; Cambridge, MA
Robert Greenwald has over twenty years experience in the fields of health, public health and HIV law and policy. Robert and his staff at the Center for Health Law and Policy Innovation of Harvard Law School are engaged in state and national research, policy development and advocacy on health initiatives. Since 1998, Robert has also served as Director of the Treatment Access Expansion Project, working to improve access to care for people living with HIV. Robert has served as an advisor to the President’s National Commission on AIDS and the HRSA/CDC Community Advisory Committee, and as a board member of AIDS Action Council of Washington D.C. and the National Lesbian and Gay Bar Association.
Chief Executive Officer, AIDS Alabama; Birmingham, AL
AIDS Alabama is a non-profit organization that provides housing and supportive services, as well as education, outreach, and testing to low-income persons with HIV/AIDS. Ms. Hiers’ employment history includes serving as Executive Director of Mobile AIDS Support Services and as a founder of the Lee Simmons Fund for People Living with AIDS in Mobile, AL. Ms. Hiers has worked for more than 15 years to serve the HIV/AIDS populations through Alabama’s service organizations.
David Holtgrave, PhD
Professor and Chair, Department of Health, Behavior and Society; Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health; Baltimore, MD
While much of Dr. Holtgrave’s efforts have been directed toward prevention, he also has knowledge and expertise of HIV/AIDS issues that impact treatment and housing. Dr. Holtgrave was previously employed by the CDC as Director, Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention - Intervention Research and Support. While employed in this position, Dr. Holtgrave worked on the first comprehensive evaluation strategy for HIV prevention programs, coordinated the first review paper on HIV prevention intervention science; helped to establish HIV prevention community planning; and improved working relationships with health departments, community-based organizations, private sector partners, and others federal agencies. Dr. Holtgrave formerly served on an Institute of Medicine panel that examined a variety of strategies for the public sector funding of HIV care and treatment services in the United States. He currently serves on the Board of the National Association of People with AIDS.
Michael Horberg, MD, MAS, FACP, FIDSA
Executive Director Research and Community Benefit, Mid-Atlantic Permanente Medical Group; Director, HIV/AIDS; Kaiser Permanente; Rockville, MD
Dr. Horberg is responsible for all research activities in Kaiser Permanente Mid-Atlantic States. He serves as director of HIV/AIDS program-wide for Kaiser Permanente. He is a Fellow of the American College of Physicians and the Infectious Disease Society of America, and he serves as Chairperson of the Board of Directors of the HIV Medicine Association of the Infectious Disease Society of America. He has co-chaired the NCQA/AMA/HRSA/IDSA sponsored Expert Panel on HIV-related provider performance measures. He is Assistant Clinical Professor at Stanford University Medical School. Dr. Horberg is past-president of the national Gay and Lesbian Medical Association. His HIV research interests are health service outcomes for HIV-infected patients (including HIV quality measures and care improvement, and determinants of optimized multidisciplinary care for maximized HIV outcomes), medication adherence issues in these patients, and epidemiology of the disease. Dr. Horberg has published over forty peer-reviewed manuscripts and delivered over one hundred scientific presentations.
Ejay Jack, MSW, MPA
Community Health Specialist, Health Interventions for Men Program, Hennepin County Public Health Clinic, Minneapolis, MN
Ejay Jack provides HIV prevention and education services specifically targeted to the MSM and transgender communit(ies), through the HIM Program (Health Interventions for Men) of Red Door Services, the STD testing clinic of Hennepin County’s Public Health Department, based in Minneapolis, MN. As a trained social worker and therapist with a specialty in the LGBTQ health and mental health fields, Ejay conducts several professional trainings on transgender health care with medical and mental health clinicians. Ejay’s other accomplishments include obtaining a dual masters in social work and public administration, interning at the White House in 2009, and serving as a Peace Corps volunteer in The Gambia, West Africa.
Executive Director for Positive Women’s Network – USA, Oakland, CA
Naina Khanna is Executive Director for Positive Women’s Network – USA, a national organization that prepares and supports women living with HIV to be involved in all levels of policy and decision-making by: eliminating stigma, building leadership, mobilizing advocates, and changing policy. She formerly served as Policy Director at Women Organized to Respond to Life-threatening Disease (WORLD) in Oakland, California. Naina currently serves on the Steering Committee for the 30 for 30 Campaign as well as the US People Living with HIV (PLHIV) Caucus, as a member of the Women's Research Initiative (WRI), and has served on President Obama’s Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS (PACHA) since February 2010. Naina has also served on the Coordinating Committee for the Coalition for a National AIDS Strategy, the Board of Directors for AIDS Alliance for Children, Youth and Families, the Conference Coordinating Committee for the 2012 International AIDS Conference, the Steering Committee for the National Women and AIDS Collective (NWAC), and the Interim Steering Committee for the HIV Prevention Justice Alliance. She is a nationally known speaker, advocate, trainer, presenter and independent consultant. Prior to working in HIV, Naina co-founded and served as National Field Director for the League of Pissed Off Voters, a progressive electoral organizing project focused on increasing political participation by young people and communities of color. Naina was diagnosed with HIV in 2002.
President, Chief Executive Officer, OraSure Technologies, Inc., Bethlehem, PA
Mr. Michels joined OraSure Technologies, Inc in June 2004, as President and Chief Executive Officer. He is a member of the Company’s Board of Directors. Since joining OraSure, Mr. Michels has led the Company to become a global leader in oral fluid diagnostics for infectious disease and drugs of abuse. Prior to joining the company, Mr. Michels spent 19 years with Johnson & Johnson and 7 years with Abbott Laboratories. At Johnson and Johnson, he was President, International, for Ortho-Clinical Diagnostics, Inc., and President of Johnson & Johnson Health Care Systems, Inc. He also held numerous General Management and Marketing and Sales positions, in both medical devices and diagnostics. While at Abbott Laboratories, he held various sales and marketing positions. Mr. Michels currently serves on the Board of St. Luke’s Hospital and Health Network in Bethlehem, Pa., and has previously served on the Board of the National Blood Foundation, the Board of the National Committee for Quality Health Care, and the Coalition to Protect America’s Health Care. Mr. Michels received a B.S. degree in Public Health Administration from the University of Illinois in 1978 and an MBA from Rutgers University in 1990.
Alton Pollard III, PhD
Dean, School of Divinity, Howard University
Alton B. Pollard III is dean of the Howard University School of Divinity. Prior to coming to Howard, he served as director of the Program of Black Church Studies at the Candler School of Theology at Emory University. He also has held faculty appointments at St. Olaf College and Wake Forest University. Dr. Pollard specializes in the areas of African-American religion and culture, sociology of the Black church, southern African studies, Pan-Africanist religious thought, American religious cultures, and sociology of religion. And, he has widely published. He is the author of “Mysticism and Social Change,” and a new introduction to W.E.B. DuBois’, “The Negro Church”; editor of Black Church Studies: An Interdisciplinary Anthology (forthcoming) and How Long This Road: Race, Religion and the Legacy of C. Eric Lincoln with L. Henry Whelchel; consulting editor of the multi-volume Howard Thurman Papers Project, The Sound of the Genuine; co-author of The Balm in Gilead’s Helpers for a Healing Community: A Pastoral Care Manual for HIV/AIDS (on-line); and former associate editor of the Black Sacred Music journal.
He also has written recent articles on the election of President Barack Obama, the African American Family, the African American Church, Hip-Hop Culture, African American Mysticism, and Black Theological Education, among others.
An ordained Baptist minister, Dr. Pollard is the former pastor of John Street Baptist Church (Mass.), New Red Mountain Baptist Church (N.C.), and Bell Buckle and Hopewell A.M.E. churches (Tenn.). He is a former associate minister of Trinity Tabernacle Baptist Church in Mableton, Ga., and a board member and consultant to numerous organizations. Dr. Pollard earned the B.A. degree with honors in religion & philosophy and business management from Fisk University; the M.Div. degree from Harvard University Divinity School; and the Ph.D. from Duke University’s Department of Religion.
Mario J. Pérez, MPH
Director, Division of HIV and STD Programs (DHSP) County of Los Angeles, Department of Public Health
Mr. Pérez is responsible for managing, planning and guiding the annual investment of more than $100 million in local, state and federal resources that support a responsive and comprehensive local HIV and STD service delivery system. He is extremely active in the HIV/AIDS community both locally and nationally, and is a leader on state, local, and national HIV policy issues, serving as a member of the National Minority AIDS Council (NMAC) Board of Directors, the Urban Coalition for HIV/AIDS Prevention Services (UCHAPS), and the Los Angeles County Commission on HIV. Mr. Perez began providing HIV/AIDS services in 1990 while still a student at UC Berkeley. On numerous occasions over the last 20 years, he has testified before members of Congress, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, and the Los Angeles City Council to address a range of HIV/AIDS issues, including support for scientifically-proven interventions, and adequate resources to meet broad HIV/AIDS goals. Mr. Pérez has received recognition for his leadership in the fight against HIV/AIDS by then Assemblyman Villaraigosa, State Senator Hilda Solis, the City Council for the City of Los Angeles, Los Angeles County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas, and multiple local organizations. He was born, raised and lives in Los Angeles.
Vanessa D. Sharp (Cephas), M.Div., MACM, MATM
Pastor of Worldwide Outreach for Higher Hope Christian Ministries; Atl., GA
Rev. Sharp was diagnosed with HIV in 1990, breaking her silence as a World AIDS Day speaker in December 1997. A strong advocate for HIV/AIDS, Rev. Sharp (Cephas) recently married, is Coordinator for the BLCA Metro Atlanta Affiliate of the National Black Leadership Commission on AIDS (NBLCA); SisterLove Inc's Board Chair; ChangeOneLife, Inc’s consultant in Kenya East Africa and Ghana West Africa; and founder of LINC Worldwide Outreach, Inc. (Love Integrates Nurture & Care), a “Girls to Women Empowerment Initiative” outreach both local and global. Rev. Sharp’s advocacy in the area of HIV and AIDS has spanned some fifteen years.
Director, HIV/AIDS ad Orphan Care Initiatives Saddleback Valley Community Church
Elizabeth Styffe is the co-founder of the HIV&AIDS Initiative at Saddleback Church with Kay Warren and the Interim Director of the Global HIV&AIDS Initiative. She currently directs the Rwanda Healthcare Initiative. She launched and directs the Orphan Care Initiatives at Saddleback Church, which focuses on equipping churches locally and globally to end the orphan crisis.
An author and international speaker, Elizabeth combines her background in pediatric nursing, loss, grief and trauma with a passion to see the church at the center of HIV and orphan care. Having received a BSN from Biola University and Master’s Degree in Nursing from UCLA, she has helped develop robust programs and tools for churches across the globe and is helping churches launch effective ministries which are church-initiated with an emphasis on permanency as the right of every child.
Executive Director, Bill’s Kitchen
Mrs. Torres led the establishment in 1997 of the first nutritional program in Puerto Rico for persons with HIV/AIDS. She has been recognized as an exceptional leader in the area of HIV/AIDS and has an ample understanding of the area of nutritional and support services for persons living with HIV. For eight years she served as a key member of the Ryan White Part A Planning Council for the San Juan EMA.
President and CEO, The Black AIDS Institute, Los Angeles, CA
Founded in May of 1999, the Black AIDS Institute is the only national HIV/AIDS think tank focused exclusively on Black people. The Institute's Mission is to stop the AIDS pandemic in Black communities by engaging and mobilizing Black institutions and individuals in efforts to confront HIV. The Institute interprets public and private sector HIV policies, conducts trainings, offers technical assistance, disseminates information and provides advocacy mobilization from a uniquely and unapologetically Black point of view.
Our motto describes a commitment to self-preservation: "Our People, Our Problem, Our Solution."
Executive Director, Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS U.S. Department of Health and Human Services 200 Independence Avenue, SW, Room 443H Washington, D.C. 20201 (202) 690-5560
Last revised: 05/02/2014