ADAP Advocacy is governed by a dedicated, diverse volunteer board of directors. The organization now benefits from the combined experience of eight HIV-positive members, two ADAP recipients (plus three former ADAP recipients), one pharmacist, two attorneys, three pharmaceutical company representatives, one nurse (retired), and several influential AIDS community activists and leaders.
The Board of Directors Includes:
Guy Anthony is Co-Founder and President of Black, Gifted & Whole who is a well-respected HIV/AIDS activist, community leader, and author. Diagnosed with HIV as a teen, Guy has dedicated his adult life to the pursuit of neutralizing global HIV/Aids-related stigmas. He released Pos(+)tively Beautiful: Affirmations, Advocacy & Advice on World AIDS Day in 2012. This collection of inspiring narratives, raw imagery, and affirming anecdotes have earned Guy much acclaim, including being named one of the top 100 HIV prevention leaders under 30 by POZ Magazine and as one of the top 100 Black LGBTQ/SGL Emerging Leaders to Watch by National Black Justice Coalition.
Guy served as a Program Manager/Coordinator for the Treatment Adherence program at Us Helping Us, a local AIDS service organization serving Black communities in the Washington, DC area for two years. In his role at US Helping Us, Guy worked with newly diagnosed Black gay men to help them come to terms with their status, navigate the complex health care system so they can access care, and develop plans for them to adhere to their treatment regimen and achieve viral suppression. Guy also served on Washington, DCs Metropolitan Ryan White Planning Council, overseeing millions of dollars in HIV funding for the city for two terms and is a regular contributor to AIDS.gov and POZ.com. Guy serves as a brand ambassador to ViiV Healthcare, one of the countrys largest pharmaceutical companies. He is the President/CEO the Black, Gifted & Whole Foundation, a two-fold intermediary organization that provides scholarships to Black gay men attending Historically Black Colleges & Universities.
Guy is currently focused on providing mentorship and financial assistance to the 6 Black, Gifted & Whole HBCU ambassadors from across the country.
Wanda Brendle-Moss, R.N.
Wanda Brendle-Moss, R.N. was diagnosed with HIV in July 2002. Wanda has always been open about her positivity except in the early years because an employer threatened to fire her if she discussed her status. She was member of Consumer Leadership Corps Trainers with AIDS Alliance. She volunteered during XIX International AIDS Conference in Washington DC where she was photographed as part of the "Graying of AIDS."
She also participated in Caitlin Margaret Kelly's photo display of women living with HIV called "Please Call Me By My True Names." Wanda has actively participated in numerous advocacy efforts, including Treatment Action Group, HIV is Not A Crime, Positive Women's Network, The Well Project, "A Girl Like Me," HealthHIV Pozitively Healthy, Global Network of People Living with HIV/AIDS North America, AIDS Watch and the ADAP Advocacy Association.
In 2014, she received the ADAP Advocacy Association's prestigious "Emerging Leader" award. Wanda is also involved with the Moral Monday Movement in North Carolina, Wanda Believes that we "Lead By Example" and "Age with Purpose!"
Erin Darling currently serves as AVP of Federal Policy for Merck. In this role, Erin is responsible for leading the company's U.S. policy and alliance development teams, which develop and implement advocacy and policy strategies on federal health care legislative and regulatory issues.
She works extensively on Medicare, Medicaid, and other federal program coverage and payment issues, drug pricing and transparency, health care reform, therapeutic area specific policy issues such as in infectious disease and oncology, and various other health care policy issues. Before coming to Merck in 2007, Erin worked in private practice as a health care lawyer with two Washington, D.C. law firms.
She currently serves on the Board of Directors of The Children's Inn at NIH, the civic engagement organization All in Together, and the HIV+Hep Policy Institute. Erin has a J.D., cum laude, from Georgetown University Law Center and a B.A. in Political Science with Distinction from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Robert "Bobby" Dorsey
Robert "Bobby" Dorsey is a respected advocate, policy advisor, and leader with expertise in legislative and regulatory research and drafting, lobbying, internal and external stakeholder engagement, and strategic initiative advancement. In his current role as deputy chief of staff for the D.C. Department of Small and Local Business Development, Bobby oversees all legislative and communications priorities and assists the chief of staff with day-to-day agency operations.
Previously, as associate state director for AARP District of Columbia, Bobby lobbied the District Council for reforms leading to improved outcomes for older District residents and their families.
After receiving a Bachelor of English degree from Williams College, Bobby went on to attend the Howard University School of Law, receiving a Juris Doctorate in 2013. During his time at Howard, Bobby interned with the Office of U.S. Senator Rob Portman where he researched tax issues. He was also a Crowell & Moring Law Fellow at the Washington Legal Clinic for the Homeless, an organization dedicated to providing housing for low-income District residents.
Bobby currently sits on the Board of Directors for Gifts for the Homeless, a District-based nonprofit that provides essential clothing to local shelters, soup kitchens, and transitional housing facilities.
Eric Flowers has been the CEO and President of the Ramsell Corporation since 2008. He led the company beyond its initial roots in pharmacy and pharmacy benefit management services by expanding its tools, technology, and services in public health, while taking it into new markets including corrections and education.
He currently is the Chairman of the board of directors of the Sutter Bay Hospitals, and the Sutter Bay Medical Foundation, is Chairman of the HealthRight360 Foundation and serves on the Advocacy Association of the AIDS Drug Assistance Programs (AAA+) Board of Directors.
Mr. Flowers earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of California, Berkeley, and his MBA from St. Mary’s College of California. In 2001, he joined the Haight Ashbury Free Clinics’ (HAFCI) board of directors, serving on a variety of committees and as vice chairman and chairman of the board until its eventual merger with Walden House. Mr. Flowers is the Chairman of the board of directors of the Sutter Bay Hospitals, and the Sutter Bay Medical Foundation.
Lyne Fortin, B.Pharm, MBA
Lyne graduated with a bachelor of pharmacy from the University of Montreal in 1982 and later obtained an MBA from Concordia University.
She worked most of her career at Merck & Co., with the last 15 years in executive level positions. From 2013 to 2018 she held the position of Senior Vice-President and Chief Commercial Officer at Theratechnologies, a global specialty pharmaceutical company addressing unmet medical needs of people living with HIV. Lyne also served on the Board of Directors of a biotechnology company with a rare condition asset and as advisor to a US start-up focusing on rare diseases. In 2021 she was appointed Chair of the Board of Small Pharma Inc, a neuropharmaceutical company developing innovative treatment for depression and other mental health disorders, a position which she held until the company was acquired in October 2023.
Her association with the HIV community goes back to the early days of her professional life when she was involved with the launch of a protease inhibitor and, at that time, established HIV advocacy relations and corporate community support for Merck in Canada. Later, she got involved in preparing for the launch of an integrase inhibitor, another new mechanism of action in the fight against HIV. More recently she lead the US launch of an orphan drug for the treatment of multi-drug resistant HIV-1. As part of her career she lived, with her family, in the Los Angeles area where she experienced firsthand the realities of market access for patients living in the US.
As Lyne would say: "We all play a different role in support of the HIV community. My motivation has always been, going back to my DNA as a pharmacist, to bring the science of inspired researchers to help patients with their medical needs. However it is through the strength of collaboration, connections, and diversity that we can have the greatest impact on people's lives."
* Photo Credit: ©Bénédicte Brocard
As the Global Public Affairs Head for Oncology for Sanofi, Hilary supports and works closely with Oncology franchise leadership, cross-functional, ]and country teams in developing global public affairs strategies to achieve our ambition and help shape the future success of our oncology portfolio globally. She also leads the Oncology global public affairs team in efforts to advance our position of leadership with oncology stakeholders, shape the policy environment, support product launches, and ensure that oncology patients have timely and equitable access to our innovations.
Prior to Sanofi, Hilary served as Executive Director, US Patient Advocacy and Strategic Alliances at Merck. As part of Merck's Global Patient Innovation team, Hilary led Merck's efforts in the US to strengthen alliances with patient advocacy organizations to accelerate patient access to Merck's innovative medicines and vaccines. In this role, Hilary sat on global commercial leadership teams to provide input and strategy on engaging external stakeholders and worked with global and federal policy teams to incorporate patient engagement into key policy initiatives. She was responsible for working with organizations across all therapeutic areas, including oncology, HIV, and vaccines. She was a key contributor to many initiatives, including Merck's Patient Advocacy Connection webinar series, advocacy events at ASCO, and BIO's Patient Advocacy Summit. Earlier this year, Hilary was selected for Merck's Rise Leadership program, a competitive, newly created global program aimed at providing multicultural leadership skills. Hilary first joined Merck in 2013, establishing herself as a collaborative partner, forming important relationships with stakeholders to advance the policy agenda.
Prior to Merck, Hilary worked at Drinker Biddle & Reath, a global law firm, collaborating with non-profit patient advocacy groups, non-profit health systems, and medical device companies to draft and execute legislative strategies through community and stakeholder outreach, as well as advocacy and direct lobbying. Hilary also worked at the American Nurses Association, leading their Nurses for Health Care Reform efforts in 2010. In addition, Hilary worked on a US Senate campaign in her home state of Oklahoma, and worked for Texas Congressman Martin Frost.
Lisa Johnson-Lett is an entrusted Living Well Peer Support Specialist who is originally from New York City and now resides in Alabama. Lisa served honorably in the U.S. Armed Forces – Army for 10 years and is a graduate of the Audrey Cohen School of Human Services and Education. Lisa holds two degrees: Bachelors of Professional Studies - Human Services and Associate Degree – Speech Communications. Diagnosed with HIV while serving the country in 1995, Lisa learned to embrace HIV well-surpassing the criminalization and stigma. She immediately involved herself in Peer lead support groups and partnerships with the following entities while representing community: Alabama Disability Advocacy Program-(ADAP); Alabama Consumer Advisory Board - (ACAB); Patient Advisory Board - (PAB).
More recently, Lisa has invested time into Positive Leadership Council and Alabama + Action projects Promoting HIV/AIDS Policy and Advocacy-partnering with AIDS UNITED and the Positive Women’s Network to raise HIV Awareness and to encourage MIPA-Meaningful Involvement of People Living with HIV/AIDS.
Jen Laws (Pronouns: He/Him/His) is the President & Founder of Policy Candy, LLC, which is a non-partisan health policy analysis firm specializing in various aspects of health care and public health policy, focusing on the needs of the HIV-affected and Transgender communities. In that capacity, Jen has served as the President & CEO of the Community Access National Network (CANN), beginning in January 2022. He previously served as the Project Director of CANN's HIV/HCV Co-Infection Watch, as well as 340B Policy Consultant.
Jen began his advocacy efforts in Philadelphia in 2005, at the age of 19, coordinating team efforts for a corporation participating in the AIDS Walk. His connection to HIV advocacy grew when partnering with Mr. Friendly, a leading anti-HIV-stigma campaign.
He began working in public health policy in 2013, as a subcontractor for Broward Regional Planning Council evaluating Marketplace plans for plan year 2014, advising and educating constituents on plan selection. Jen was a member of South Florida AIDS Network and has worked with Florida Department of Health, Broward and Miami-Dade County Health Departments, Pride Center South Florida, and other local organizations to South Florida in addressing the concerns and needs of these intersecting communities. During this time, Jen was seated on the board of directors for the ADAP Advocacy Association.
Having moved to the New Orleans area in 2019, Jen resumed his community-based advocacy as the chair of Louisiana's Ending the HIV Epidemic planning subcommittee for Data-based Policy and Advocacy, regular participation as a community member and "do-gooder" with other governmental and non-governmental planning bodies across the Louisiana, and engages with other southern state planning bodies. He continues his advocacy in governmental health care policy evaluation, which has been utilized to expand access to quality healthcare by working with RAD Remedy to deliver the nation's foremost database of trans* competent health care providers. Lending his expertise on policy matters ranging from 340B impact on RW providers and patients to strategic communications and data analysis, Jen's approach to community engagement is focused on being accessible across all stakeholder groups and centering the perspectives of PLWHA and Transgender people. He is a community ambassador alumni of the CDC's Let's Stop HIV Together campaign.
In his personal life, Jen enjoys spending his time being "ridiculously wholesome" with his partner, Aisha, and her two amazing daughters. In their personal time, when not immersed in crafts or house projects, they can be found seeking opportunities to help their neighbors, friends, and community members (who have come to rightfully expect exquisite gift baskets of Aisha's homemade jams and jellies from time to time). Jen strives to set a good example both in his personal professional life of integrating values into action and extending the kindness and care that have led him to a life he calls "extraordinarily lucky".
Brandon M. Macsata
Brandon M. Macsata is a long-term survivor, living with HIV/AIDS since March 2002. He serves as Managing Partner of the Purple Strategy Group, Inc. - a national political strategy firm specializing in grassroots advocacy campaigns, media tactics, and social networks. In that capacity, Macsata has served as the CEO of the ADAP Advocacy Association since the organization's inception in July 2007. He is widely recognized for his ability to connect national, state and local stakeholders interested in influencing public health policy. Notably, Macsata has successfully assembled a wide spectrum of public health stakeholders to re-energize patient advocacy around the AIDS Drug Assistance Program at the national level. He is unapologetically pro-patient.
He is also a former ADAP recipient. From November 2003 to March 2006, Macsata authored a weekly news column on national HIV-related stories for The Weekly News, an LGBT publication based in Miami, Florida. In November 2009, Macsata was acknowledged by HIV-Plus Magazine to be amongst the “Top 25 LGBT Leaders Fighting HIV/AIDS”.
At the age of 27, Macsata was the youngest Executive Director of a national trade association. He managed the American Congress of Community Support & Employment Services (ACCSES) from 2000-2003, a national trade association representing the interests of community, non-profit agencies providing supports and services to persons with disabilities. Prior to moving to Washington, DC in 2000, he opened a 100-bed assisted living care facility in Wilmington, North Carolina. Serving as the facility’s assistant administrator, Macsata worked closely with community leaders and state agencies to advocate for seniors.
He is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Wilmington, where he graduated Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Arts in political science. In April 2009, UNCW awarded Macsata - and his business partner - the Political Science Department’s “Outstanding Political Science Graduate” award in recognition for their accomplishments. Macsata is a single parent raising his son, Sebastian.
Theresa Nowlin tested HIV positive in 1986, when she was 24 years old. Theresa contracted HIV through unprotected sex and or IV drug use. In 1991, Theresa started treatment after she found out she was pregnant with her first son, Mark, who was born September 3,1992 (at 18 months old, Mark tested HIV negative). In 1994, Theresa gave birth to her second son, Sean, who at 6 months old also tested HIV negative. Theresa's physician was unsure about starting treatment during her pregnancy with Mark but by the time she was pregnant with Sean the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention cleared the way for pregnant women to take AZT.
Due to the harshness of medications in the 1990s, Theresa refused to take medication. In 2006, she only had 3 T-Cells and her viral load was in the millions. She had a nervous break down, followed by a stroke and ended up in the hospital in a coma. During the hospital stay, Theresa was put on Atripla. After completing her physical rehabilitation in the nursing home, Theresa was homeless in a wheelchair.
Theresa credits Peer Support and all of the professionals who cared for her as the reason for being alive today. She is now a vocal advocate for medication adherence after participating in a study at Fenway Health, which included a counseling component. Today, Theresa is in full compliance with taking her medication and attends all of her doctor appointments.
Shabbir Imber Safdar
Shabbir Imber Safdar has served as the Executive Director of the Partnership for Safe Medicines since 2017. Before that he was the Director of Outreach and has served as a consultant to PSM for nearly a decade. Shabbir is passionate about patient safety and the dangers of counterfeits, having seen them firsthand the dangers of counterfeits in countries around the world where a closed, secure drug supply chain doesn't exist.
The Partnership for Safe Medicines, founded in 2003, is a not for profit focused entirely on researching the danger of counterfeit drugs in America and educating the public about how to stay safe from them.
Today Shabbir leads the Partnership for Safe Medicines team from San Francisco, CA where he lives with his wife and two children. He plays string bass in a bluegrass band for fun.
Jennifer Vaughan is a California native, a teacher, mother of three and the founder and creator of Jennifer’s Positive Life, a YouTube channel featuring her life living with HIV. Launched 5 months after her February 2016 diagnosis, her channel now features over 200 videos and is followed by more than 40,000 subscribers (2019).
Her videos propelled her into instant advocacy and from that she founded a private support group through Facebook for HIV+ women. The majority of her members are newly diagnosed and women who have lived years without ever knowing another poz female. Her group currently supports 200 women from all over the globe.
Plus Magazine named Jennifer 2018’s 5th Most Amazing HIV+ People of the year, while POZ Magazine included her in their 8th Annual Celebrating POZ 100 Women of the year issue. Jennifer attended AIDS2018 International in Amsterdam as a Social Scholar representing the Prevention Access Campaign (U=U). She received a scholarship from N.M.A.C. and attended the USCA conference in Florida as a Social Media Fellow. In September 2018, she attended ADAP’s Advocacy Association’s Annual Conference in Washington D.C. as the Keynote Speaker and was the recipient of the 2018 Social Media Campaign of the Year for her YouTube channel. She’s also a blogger for The Well Project.
Her influencer mentality is continually projected through all her social media in an attempt to educate the masses on HIV and combat the stigma that surrounds the virus.
Marcus A. Wilson
Marcus A. Wilson (He/Him) is the Senior Director, Community Engagement and Patient Advocacy, U.S. Virology at Gilead Sciences, Inc. Marcus has enthusiastic contributed to ending the HIV epidemic and improving health equity globally for more than two decades. His work with national advocacy organizations has protected patient and physician choice, increased equity in healthcare, and improved access to life saving therapies.
Marcus is an active member of the LGBTQ+ community. He has served on the boards of AIDS Foundation Chicago, Chicago Black Gay Men’s Caucus, and currently serves on the boards of ONYX, and LLC. Marcus has provided support and guidance to numerous community organizations utilizing his policy and advocacy knowledge and esteemed relationships.
In his free time, Marcus enjoys international travel, spending time with family and friends, and volunteering within his community. He is a native of Detroit, MI who currently resides in Orlando, FL with his partner, Steven.