Southern AIDS Coalition

The mission of the Southern AIDS Coalition (SAC) is to end the HIV epidemic in the South. SAC is a non-partisan coalition of government, community, and business leaders working alongside thousands of community members to prevent new transmissions and build a better South for people living with HIV (PLHIV). Since 2001, they have promoted accessible and high-quality systems of HIV prevention and care across 16 Southern states and the District of Columbia. Today, their work is divided into four core categories: public health advocacy, capacity building assistance and education, formative research and evaluation, and strategic grantmaking. The Southern AIDS Coalition also collaborates closely with the Southern HIV/AIDS Strategy Initiative (SASI), which is an initiative of the Duke Health Justice Clinic.

We Offer

Internalized Stigma Reduction Trainings

We provide funding for the design, implementation, and evaluation of interventions to reduce HIV-related stigma for people living with HIV in the South.

Awareness, Education, and Stigma Reduction Campaigns

We provide funding for community-led grassroots campaigns to promote awareness and real knowledge about HIV and AIDS.

Shared Learning Opportunities

We partner with organizations to pilot HIV-related stigma reduction interventions in local communities across the South. Currently, they are implementing and evaluating the LEAD Academy and Unity Workshop.

Stigma Reduction Trainings

We offer trainings to community-based organizations, government agencies, health care delivery entities, and government agencies on how to provide culturally appropriate, non-stigmatizing services to people living with HIV and other marginalized communities (or people living with or disproportionately impacted by HIV in the South).

Meet Our Team

Carolyn McAllaster, JD
Carolyn McAllaster, JD
Colin W. Brown Clinical Professor of Law, Duke University

Carolyn McAllaster is the Colin W. Brown Clinical Professor of Law at Duke University School of Law and the founder of the Duke AIDS Legal Project and the Duke HIV/AIDS Policy Clinic. She directs the Southern HIV/AIDS Strategy Initiative (“SASI”) and is a past co-chair of the North Carolina AIDS Action Network. McAllaster teaches HIV/AIDS and the Law, Readings in Transgender Issues, as well as clinical law courses focusing on HIV/AIDS law and policy issues. She received the Positive Leadership Award from the National Association of People with AIDS in 2012, the Alexander D. Forger Award for Excellence in HIV Legal Services and Advocacy from the American Bar Association in 2013, and in 2016, she was named in the POZ 100 celebrating people working to end the HIV/AIDS epidemic by POZ Magazine. Professor McAllaster is the author of several articles and chapters in books and is a frequent speaker on HIV/AIDS and the Law issues. The research conducted by the SASI research team has documented that HIV-related stigma is a major driver of the Southern HIV epidemic. Carolyn is thrilled to be participating in the Gilead COMPASS InitiativeTM and to have the resources to combat stigma in our region.

mcallaster@law.duke.edu
Susan Reif, PhD, MSW
Susan Reif, PhD, MSW
Research Scholar, Center for Health Policy & Inequalities Research

Dr. Reif is a Research Scholar at the Center for Health Policy and Inequalities Research at Duke University with a doctoral degree in Health Policy and Administration. She is the project director for a SAMHSA-funded program evaluating a comprehensive substance use treatment program for individuals living with or at high risk for HIV, the principal investigator for a Ford Foundation research partnership with the Duke University Law School on HIV in the Deep South and the contract research director for the COMPASS stigma initiative administered by the Southern AIDS Coalition. Dr. Reif has participated in the design, implementation, and analysis of a dozen federally funded research projects that studied and addressed HIV risk reduction, care provision and HIV-related stigma. Through her current and prior research experience and doctoral and post-doctoral training, she developed strong qualitative and quantitative research skills including focus group and interview facilitation and analysis, survey design, and longitudinal data analysis. In addition, her ten years of experience as a clinical social worker with individuals living with HIV provided her with a unique perspective and skill set to approach HIV-related research. The COMPASS Initiative is critical because it will significantly enhance our ability to address HIV-related stigma, which has been identified as pervasive in the Deep South and associated with poor HIV-related health outcomes. Through the work sponsored by the COMPASS Initiative, we will further the science in how to effectively reduce HIV-related stigma and address and abate stigma at the individual, organizational level and policy level.

susan.reif@duke.edu
Gina Brown, RSW
Gina Brown, RSW
Community Organizer

As a woman living with HIV and working in this field, it is a pleasure to be a part of the Southern AIDS Coalition team addressing Stigma. If we really want to ensure people living with HIV are healthy, we have to help them overcome Stigma. Stigma reduction is a way to also prevent new HIV diagnoses. The COMPASS Initiative is important because the South is a unique geographical area with unique needs.

gina@southernaidscoalition.org
Marvin Anderson
Marvin Anderson
Communications Manager

Marvin Anderson is an empowerment advocate and author living and thriving with HIV. Marvin’s platform as an empowerment advocate is to empower individuals to live purposeful and authentic lives. Marvin attended Los Angeles Valley College where he studied communications and has worked in various media capacities including radio and television broadcasting and print media. Marvin serves as Communications Manager at The Southern AIDS Coalition, a non-partisan coalition working to end the HIV epidemic in the South. He is also the founder of The Empowerment Leader Inc. and The Stigmocracy Organization. The Empowerment Leader Inc. is a lifestyle empowerment brand that specializes in personal and professional development maximization, through the scope of individualized, organizational and corporate empowerment coaching and speaking. The Stigmocracy Organization is the passion born organization that encompasses Marvin’s heart of advocacy as a HIV positive advocate to destigmatize families, communities, cities, states and universally.

marvin@southernaidscoalition.org
Mardrequs Harris
Mardrequs Harris
Senior Manager, Capacity Building Assistance

Mardrequs Harris is the Senior Manager of Capacity Building for the Southern AIDS Coalition. He is a Tennessee native and graduate of Tennessee State University in Nashville, TN. Being born and raised in TN, Mardrequs’ heart and passion for the work is driven by seeing improved health outcomes among people living with and affected by HIV in the South. He has had the privilege to work on the local, state, and national levels in this sect of public health over the past seven years. He has served in some of the following roles, Clinical Research Interviewer and Retention Specialist for Emory University’s School of Medicine in Atlanta, GA for the HVTN 505 study, Outreach Coordinator for the Haven Memphis, a drop-in center and entity of Friends for Life Corp, PrEP Director for the Tennessee Department of Health and Senior Program Analyst on the HIV, STI, and Viral Hepatitis team at the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO) in Washington, DC. Mardrequs serves on several regional and national committees, including but not limited to the CBA National Advisory Committee for API Wellness (San Francisco, CA) and the Southern HIV/AIDS Strategy Initiative (SASI).

mardrequs@southernaidscoalition.org
Nic Carlisle, JD
Nic Carlisle, JD
Executive Director, Southern AIDS Coalition

Nic Carlisle is the executive director of the Southern AIDS Coalition. From 2016-2017, he also served on the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS (PACHA), a federal advisory committee that provides advice, information and recommendations to the President and the Secretary of Health and Human Services. Nic has worked as an advocate for people living with HIV, both domestically and internationally, for more than a decade. Upon graduating magna cum laude from the University of Alabama School of Law in 2006, he founded Alabama’s first legal program for people living with HIV. He served in the United States Peace Corps, where he designed HIV prevention programs for youth, women, and ethnic minorities. Nic also previously worked as the director of policy and advocacy at AIDS Alabama, as well as the executive director of Thrive Alabama, a federally funded HIV primary care clinic in North Alabama.

nic@southernaidscoalition.org

Southern AIDS Coalition

530 Beacon Parkway West, Suite 503
Birmingham, AL 35209