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2023 Keynote SPEAKERS

Adam Thompson

Health Systems Carpenter & Practice Facilitator

Mr. Adam Thompson holds an undergraduate degree in theology from Georgetown University and a master’s degree in public health from the Jefferson College of Population Health.


Mr. Thompson is the former Director of the South Jersey AIDS Education and Training Center and currently works as a health systems carpenter and practice facilitator supporting clinics, communities, and health systems throughout the United States to transform practices and improve patient and community outcomes.


As a person with HIV himself, Mr. Thompson brings both professional expertise and lived experience to his work championing the rights of all persons in the United States to have access to equitable high-quality care.

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Dafina Ward, J.D. 

Executive Director - Southern AIDS Coalition (SAC)

Dafina Ward, J.D. is an attorney and non-profit strategist with nearly fifteen years of experience addressing HIV and health equity issues in the southern United States.  Working in partnership with a range of advocates—from grassroots leaders to federal decision-makers—she is a trusted voice in regional and national spaces. 


Dafina currently serves as Executive Director of the Southern AIDS Coalition (SAC), an organization with a regional focus and national reach, with a mission to end the HIV and STI epidemics in the South.  SAC utilizes community-centered policy advocacy, grantmaking, leadership development, and capacity-building trainings to support transformation in the region.  SAC created Southern HIV/AIDS Awareness Day [SHAAD] in 2019 to amplify the HIV crisis in the region.  SHAAD is now a nationally recognized day adopted by hundreds of organizations and reaching thousands annually.


Dafina shares her reflections on the intersections of race, gender, and health through writing, with work appearing in the Washington Post, Role Reboot, and The Body.  She was recognized by POZ Magazine twice in 2021—as the July/August POZ Hero and as a member of the 2021 POZ 100 (the magazine’s list of the 100 most influential Black HIV advocates in the nation). Dafina received her BA in Mass Media Arts from Clark Atlanta University (Atlanta, GA) and her Juris Doctor from Temple University’s Beasley School of Law (Philadelphia, PA). She and her husband reside in Bluffton, South Carolina with their brilliant daughters.


Deondre B. Moore

Award Winning Human Rights Activist

Deondre B. Moore is a GLAAD Award winning human rights activist who has spent the last eight years of his life dedicating his time and resources to educating people and raising awareness all over the world regarding HIV and Civil Rights issues. Deondre began his work in public health and advocacy after receiving an HIV positive diagnosis in 2014 at the age of 19 on campus as freshman at Sam Houston State University. Since his diagnosis, he has taken the education he has received and shared it with community members and peers across the globe.


Deondre’s years of experience serving on various national Community Advisory Boards, as a Community Mobilizer in Texas, and experience as a pharmaceutical community engagement expert has provided him with the necessary skill sets to serve on his role with Prevention Access Campaign(U=U) as the Director of U.S. Partnerships & Community Engagement from 2020-2023. Deondre’s lived experience has helped strengthen PAC’s meaningful engagement with national partners and communities to bring about awareness and resources consistent with PAC’s values. In 2019 Deondre was called upon by the United States Consulate General to Milan, Italy to tour the northern part of the country and educate the citizens in various cities on the importance HIV treatment, access, and prevention. Deondre has been named PLUS Magazine's 2022 Person of the Year & featured as one of POZ magazines 100 influential advocates of 2021.


Deondre is now the owner of a new restaurant and bar located in Southeast Texas called “The Park on Calder” which has quickly grown to be a staple in the community.

Deondre continues to engage with various communities and organizations throughout the U.S. and around the world with emphasis on Black and Brown communities and other communities of color to provide resources, build meaningful partnerships, and to ensure that entities & organizations that he is connected to are expanding and operating at their full potential to continue changing the trajectory of and the way we look at HIV & prevention around the world.

Gail Bolan
Derek Spencer
Gina Brown
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