World AIDS Day in Nashville

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The Vanderbilt HIV Vaccine Trials Unit is hosting a World AIDS Day event on December 1.

"Driving to Zero: Aligning in Response to HIV in the South" is intended as a time for reflection, unity, health information and the observance of World AIDS Day. The event is free and will be held in Wightman Chapel on the campus of Scarritt-Bennett Center.

The event begins with a complimentary continental breakfast at 9am before the commemoration begins at 9:30am and will conclude an hour later.

From the Facebook event page:

The gathering will include a personal reflection on the plight of African American Transgender women in the south from national activist and founder of the Tennessee Transgender Journey Project, LaSaia Wade, who will also serve as event host.

Keynote speaker, Mr. Stephaun E. Wallace, Senior Community Engagement Project Manager for the HIV Vaccine Trials Network located at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle, Washington, will address the gathering with a unique perspective on the HIV/AIDS epidemic and the role of community collaboration in reaching the goal of ZERO new HIV/AIDS infections in our community by 2020. Wallace will also address the importance of biomedical prevention modalities and the crucial role black community and local health organizations must play in the research and development of these modalities, if they are to be efficacious in the most affected communities. Mr. Wallace is a public health/social justice leader with more than twenty years of grassroots social justice/advocacy experience with LGBTQI/MSM communities, and a proven commitment to the illumination and eradication of HIV/AIDS and other health disparities via policy, research, education and advocacy. He has completed undergraduate degrees in Psychology and Criminal Justice, Masters of Science degrees in Management and Organizational Leadership, and is currently pursuing a Doctor of Philosophy in Public Health with an Epidemiology specialization.

The event will also include a preview of the original theatrical production, "You Shall LHiV 2 ZERO," written and performed by T.K. Hampton and supporting cast comprised of local HIV/AIDS advocates, educators and service providers. 

Among the community organizations collaborating to present “Driving to Zero” are Nashville’s Metro Human Relations Commission, Planned Parenthood of Middle and East Tennessee, Scarritt Bennett Center, Streetworks, Tennessee Transgender Journey Project and Vanderbilt HIV Vaccine Program.