On Sunday, December 1, 2019 WNCAP will celebrate World AIDS Day by hosting a free community luncheon.
International AIDS advocate Tori Cooper, a health and equity consultant and founder and executive director of Advocates for Better Care Atlanta, will be the keynote speaker.
Ms. Cooper considers empowerment, education, and opportunity three important factors in success, and her advocacy is designed specifically to empower the transgender community and people with HIV-AIDS. She has more than 25 years of experience in the HIV field, having first served as a volunteer near the beginning of the epidemic.
In 2015 Ms. Cooper created Advocates for Better Care Atlanta (ABC Atlanta), dedicated to the education and empowerment of marginalized people across the country. ABC Atlanta provides technical support, capacity-building assistance, education and travel stipends, utility assistance, cell phone and rent payments. She is currently training a team of advocates for an innovative program that she created to mold the next wave of leadership in the HIV and transgender communities.
Ms. Cooper was a featured plenary speaker at the United States Conference on AIDS in 2018 and 2019. She was the only black trans person to give a Ted Talk presentation at World Pride—Stonewall50 in 2019, which honored the historic Stonewall Riot that launched the gay rights movement in New York City in 1969.
She serves on several boards and community groups including Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance-Bottom’s LGBTQ Advisory Board, the boards of SisterLove, Inc., Project Affirm, PozVets US, the Clayton County HIV Consortium, and the Transgender Law Center (TLC). She is a trainer for NMAC’s Building Leaders Of Color program and the first transgender woman certified by the CDC as Lead Facilitator of the WILLOW intervention. She adapted the curriculum for this intervention in 2015 making it trans specific and culturally appropriate.
Ms. Cooper has received numerous awards for her work and has written for the Huffington Post, The New York Times, Washington Post, The Advocate and other periodicals, as well as appearing on YouTube and other media platforms. Her work is featured in two documentaries, The Silent Epidemic and Hidden Epidemic, about her work on behalf of the trans community and HIV in the South.
Cooper earned a BA in Human Services and is currently working toward an MA in Public Health.
The 2019 World AIDS Day Community Luncheon takes place on Sunday, December 1, 2019 from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel, 115 Hendersonville Road in Asheville. Attendance is free but seating is extremely limited; please RSVP to Michael Poandl at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (828) 252-7489 ext. 313.