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December 4, 2009


Taskforce honors six for ‘Voices Against the Silence’

Maya Jones, Danny Sparks and Nobles Darby accepted the award for the Ohio Advocates Youth Leadership Council.

Dave Merriman of the Cleveland Office of HIV Services and Laureen Tewsharber of the AIDS Funding Collabrative chat with award winner Jim Price.

Photos by Robert Olayas

Cleveland--Four individuals and two organizations were honored this week for raising their voices to help end of the silence of HIV and AIDS in northeast Ohio.

In a breakfast ceremony on December 1, the AIDS Taskforce of Cleveland marked World AIDS Day with the Voices Against the Silence awards. The eleventh annual awards were given at the agency’s offices on Euclid Avenue.

The 2009 honorees are:

Jeffrey Mazo, Ryan White Planning Council and the Consumer Advisory Board for the AIDS Clinical Trials Unit.

Jim Price, Co-chair, Cuyahoga County HIV Prevention Regional Advisory Group.

Tami Sanderson, Community activist working against “Abstinence Only Until Marriage” curriculum in Loveland public schools.

Alan Taege, M.D., Founder and director, Cleveland Clinic, Department of Infectious Disease HIV Clinic.

AIDS Clinical Trial Unit of Case Western Reserve University and University Hospitals.

Ohio Advocates Youth Leadership Council.

“It’s unfortunate that over the past ten years or so, the battle against HIV/AIDS has slipped into silence,” said Taskforce CEO Earl Pike. “The individuals and organizations we honor today have broken that silence in so many dramatic ways. They are our colleagues, our friends, our families--our heroes.”

The Voices Against the Silence awards have been presented annually since 1999 to organizations and individuals whose voices have been raised to bring attention to the often silent battle against HIV and AIDS.

Among the notable past recipients are public officials, including Sens. Mike DeWine and Sherrod Brown, Rep. Stephanie Tubbs Jones, Cleveland Mayor Michael White and Councilor Joe Cimperman; along with news organizations and members of the media such as WCPN 90.3 FM, the Gay People’s Chronicle, and Denise Dufala.

Community activists who have been honored in the past include Cathy Lewis, former chair of the Cleveland Foundation; vic gelb; Brooke Willis; Rob Toth; Ted Wammes; and John Katsaros. Health care practitioners include Henry Ng, M.D.; Douglas Van Auken, M.D. Robert Kalayian, M.D.; Victoria Cargill, M.D.; and David Newmarker, D.D.S.

Steve Louzos handles public relations for the AIDS Taskforce of Greater Cleveland.







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