2010 Hope is a Vaccine Awards Ceremony

The annual Hope is a Vaccine awards ceremony and  fundraiser will be
held June 17th at the Providence Hotel. This annual gala raises funds
to support research on a novel AIDS vaccine which is based on the
principle that the HIV virus has one or many “Achilles’ Heels,” which
are vulnerable to attack by the human immune system. Funds also support
HIV Education, Prevention efforts, and Access to care programs in Mali
and Providence. In addition, the GAIA foundation will present the Hope
is a Vaccine award to the 2010 honorees. Please join us! The awards
presented will be:


Michel Sidibé is the Executive Director of UNAIDS, the Joint
United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS. He has been the driving force
behind promoting universal access to HIV prevention, treatment, care
and support at the global level. Mr. Sidibé is also calling for virtual
elimination of mother-to-child transmission of HIV by 2015. In
addition, Mr. Sidibé’s work has played a major role in reducing the
number of new HIV infections and AIDS-related deaths by nearly 20%.
Fewer people are becoming infected with HIV and fewer people are dying
from AIDS, and 56 countries have reported a reduction in the rate of
new HIV infections this year. GAIA VF salutes Mr. Sidibé for his
leadership and courageous efforts to expand access to life-saving HIV
treatment to all individuals who are in need.



Dr. Julie McElrath is Principal Investigator and Director of the
HVTN (HIV Vaccine Trials Network) Laboratory Program and Seattle
Vaccine Trials Unit. Dr. McElrath has built and maintains a successful
international HIV vaccine laboratory program, conducts translational
immunological research in humans in a multicenter setting, where her
research has contributed to fundamental understanding of how T cells
control HIV infection. She has played a leadership role at the national
and international level in several well known HIV vaccine initiatives
(HVTN, Microbicides Network, Gates HIV Vaccine Enterprise) and has
upheld higher standards for the quality of HIV vaccine research on an
international level. Above all, her methodical approach to HIV Vaccine
trial evaluation, her equanimity and her balanced perspective on HIV
vaccines is appreciated and valued by members of HIV vaccine community.


Gail Skowron, M.D. is Chief of the Division of Infectious
Diseases at Roger Williams Medical Center and a Professor of Medicine
at the Boston University School of Medicine. She also holds an
appointment as Adjunct Associate Professor of Medicine at Brown
University School of Medicine. She directs the Infectious Disease
program at the Roger Williams Hospital, in Providence Rhode Island. She
is director of the HIV Immunology Laboratory at Roger Williams
Hospital, where she studies the mechanism of CD4 cell depletion in HIV
disease, including the evaluation of lymph node and gut-associated
lymphoid tissues. Above all, Gail is commended for her dedication to
HIV/AIDS patients and her sensitivity to all aspects of her patient’s
lives while providing the highest possible quality of care. 


Awarded annually to deserving individuals working on the
international, national, and local fight against HIV/AIDS, the Hope is
a Vaccine Award highlights important individual efforts towards
fighting AIDS and their contributions to improving HIV care for persons
living at the margins. GAIA VF hopes that the award will shed light on
the hard work done by courageous advocates, scientists, and policy
makers, and that the award will encourage more individuals to be
engaged in the fight against HIV/AIDS worldwide. The awards will be
presented at the annual Hope is a Vaccine award ceremony and Benefit on
June 17th at 6PM at the Hotel Providence.


2009: Ira Magaziner, architect of the Clinton HIV/AIDS
Initiative and TB vaccine visionary Carol Nacy, Ph.D. (Sequella,
Foundation) were the principal Hope is a Vaccine Award winners, 2009.
Also celebrated were Rhode Islanders Ed Wood and Anne Sliney of the
Clinton HIV/AIDS Initiative.

2008: Daniel Halperin, Ph.D., proponent of male circumcision and
birth control for HIV/AIDS prevention. Also celebrated in 2008: Prison
HIV experts Rick Altice, David Thomas, David Paar, David Wohl, and Joe
Bick, National Hope is a Vaccine Award winners, and Jesse Creel, Hope
is a Vaccine 2008 Advocacy award winner.

2007: Stephen Lewis, former UN Ambassador for AIDS. Also
receiving an award in 2007: HIV Vaccine Researcher Judy Lieberman,
M.D., Ph.D. and Leigh Blake of Keep a Child Alive.

2006: Sonia Erlich Sachs M.D. and Jeff Sachs Ph.D. of Millennium
Village Project. Also celebrated: TB clinician and patient advocate,
Jane Carter, M.D., and 3 local awardees.

2005: Jose Esparza, M.D. Director of the Global AIDS Vaccine
Initiative, at the Gates Foundation. Also receiving Hope is a Vaccine
Award 2005 were Habib Koite (international music artist) and President
A. T. Toure of Mali. 

2003: Neal Nathanson, M.D. former polio vaccine pioneer and
former director of the Office for AIDS Research, NIH. Also celebrated:
David Weiner, AIDS vaccine researcher, Ken Mayer, HIV expert, and
DeeDee Williams, HIV vaccine trial participant.
2004: Peggy Johnston, Ph.D. Associate Director, Division of AIDS,
NIAID, NIH. Also celebrated:  Susan Cu Uvin, M.D (MTCTP advocate) and
Ousmane Koita, Ph.D. Malian HIV vaccine researcher.