From: Pittsburgh AIDS Task Force []

Sent: Wednesday, June 04, 2014 9:13 AM

To: Jason Herring

Subject: Isn't it gorgeous?!?



PATF logo 2 color 




        Issue 38/
April 2014







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Dear Jason, 

Welcome to
e-Perspectives, a monthly e-newsletter that highlights current and upcoming Pittsburgh AIDS Task Force events, accomplishments and programs, as well as national and international HIV/AIDS information. 

Have questions or comments about
e-Perspectives? Please contact editor Jason Herring at    



PATF Introduces the Newly
Re-Designed Kerry Stoner Award


Photo courtesy of the Pittsburgh Glass Center



Richard Parsakian had a vision and that vision was unveiled at PATF's 28th Annual Benefit as the newly re-imagined Kerry Stoner Award which was presented to Giant Eagle, Inc. in front of 400 guests.


The conversation started when Parsakian brought together many of Kerry Stoner's friends and those passionate about his legacy to talk about how best to represent Stoner while honoring the contributions of the award recipients. Nachum Golan, Steve Hough, Wes Scott, Mary Irwin Scott, Linda Bucci, Tom Sokolowski, Gordon Fisher, Elliott Oshry, and Dee Jay Oshry came together to remember their friend and imagine a new way to honor his legacy.


The results of this effort speak for itself. The physical beauty along with the symbolism is not only touching, but a perfect  reflection of the hope and power that PATF and this community has in fighting the HIV epidemic as well as being a fitting tribute to Kerry.


"Last year I proposed a new way to connect all of the circles that intersect Kerry's work, personality, and friends to an object that would give more meaning to his memory", said Parsakian. "My inspiration came from Kerry's love of one of our most iconic films, The Wizard of Oz. It is the quest by a group of friends looking to find a way to empower themselves to find acceptance and love, to overcome adversities only to find that they had possessed these inner strengths all the time."


"One character in particular, Glinda the Good, helps to reveal this through the wand she holds", he continued. "The wand gives all who hold it the power to create change, the power to do good. These are the qualities we look for in those we honor."


Parsakian was insistent that the wand be crafted from clear glass to symbolize "purity, the fragility of life, and empowerment."


The award itself was created by glass artist Melissa Fitzgerald while the base was created by Travis Rohrbaugh, both of the Pittsburgh Glass Center. Kathleen Mulcahy, Ron Desmett, Heather McElwee, and Paige Ilkhanipour of the Pittsburgh Glass Center were all instrumental in the creation of the award as their time, passion, and creative energy made it possible.


PATF is humbled by the dedication and passion that Richard Parsakian has for the work that we do and we are honored to call him friend. Thank you.


To see pictures from the benefit, visit us on Facebook




PATF Honors our Volunteers



This Friday, April 11th, join Pittsburgh AIDS Task Force as we show our appreciation for past and present volunteers. The lobby will be stocked with food and drink and KARAOKE!!


See you there!!


For more information, call Vianca at 412-345-0581 or email




Be a Buddy!



The mission of the volunteer Buddy Program is to connect HIV-positive individuals with a compassionate and caring buddy that can provide companionship, emotional support, occasional assistance with daily living tasks, and respite care for family members. Buddies assist with many of the concerns of an HIV-positive individual but most significantly help by being willing to listen.


There are three types of Buddy:

  • Traditional: Traditional Buddies may or may not be HIV-positive and are assigned an adult client for telephone and face to face contact 2 - 4 hours a week.


  • Mentor: Mentor Buddies are HIV-positive and assigned to a newly HIV-positive diagnosed client for face to face contact and guidance 3 - 6 hours a week.


  • Telephone: Telephone Buddies may or may not be HIV-positive and are assigned to a client for telephone contact for at least 2 hours a week.

Requested time commitment varies according to the needs of the client and the type of Buddy, but may average between 2 - 6 hours per week. Act 33/34 (child abuse and criminal history) clearances required.


For more information or to apply, call Karen Battle at 412-345-0585 or email



HIV in the News: 


No-one with an undetectable viral load, gay or heterosexual, transmits HIV in first two years of PARTNER study


The second large study to look at whether people with HIV become non-infectious if they are on antiretroviral therapy (ART) has found no cases where someone with a viral load under 200 copies/ml transmitted HIV, either by anal or vaginal sex.


Statistical analysis shows that the maximum likely chance of transmission via anal sex from someone on successful HIV treatment was 1% a year for any anal sex and 4% for anal sex with ejaculation where the HIV-negative partner was receptive; but the true likelihood is probably much nearer to zero than this.


When asked what the study tells us about the chance of someone with an undetectable viral load  transmitting HIV, presenter Alison Rodger said: "Our best estimate is it's zero."


Read rest of story here 


Pitt Public Health analysis challenges assumptions about bisexual men and HIV transmission


The number of HIV positive men who have sex with both men and women is likely no higher than the number of HIV positive heterosexual men, according to a U.S.-based analysis by University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health researchers. The finding challenges a popular assumption that bisexual men are responsible for significant HIV transmission to their female partners.


The research, which will be presented at the American Public Health Association's 141st Annual Meeting & Exposition in Boston, builds a case for federal investment in research on HIV prevalence among bisexually behaving men.



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