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  • Alex Aviance

    Alex Aviance

    Alex Aviance is a young, queer man who lives and blogs in Toronto, Ontario. His interests include theoretical physics, cooking, World of Warcraft, and Ru Paul’s Drag race. Alex currently holds a B.A. in Journalism from Ryerson University and has plans to return to school to study social work. He hopes to pursue a career working in the field of queer men’s sexual health. His idols include Naomi Campbell, Anna Nicole Smith and Tammy Faye Bakker. You can often find him consuming far too many carbohydrates, destroying the patriarchy, and very likely engaging in a Twitter war @AlexAviance.

  • Alex Sparrowhawk

    Alex Sparrowhawk

    “For the past five years I have been living with HIV and the last two years of that openly and with no shame. I use my blog to talk about my own personal journey, my opinions and thoughts and to fight for what is right and fair for all People Living with HIV.

    Unashamedly an activist, advocate and voice for all things HIV and LGBT awareness and rights related. As my body continues to battle the virus I continue to fight the fear and ignorance that leads to the stigma associated with HIV and AIDS.”

    Alex is from Manchester in the UK. His website/blog Alex Sparrowhawk: HIV & Me is here. He is on twitter at @birdy_tweet.

  • Andrew Morrison-Gurza

    Andrew Morrison-Gurza

    Andrew Morrison-Gurza is a Disability Awareness Consultant with an MA in Legal Studies from Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada, specializing in Persons with Disabilities.  Andrew’s passion is “making disability accessible to everyone.”  In his work, he highlights the lived experience of Persons with Disabilities to show that disability is a universal experience we can all embrace.   Within the LGBTQ+ community, Andrew works to deconstruct our homo-normative, body beautiful ideals and show that Queers with Disabilities deserve representation.   Andrew is a featured blogger for Huffington Post Gay Voices and has been featured on MTV Canada’s, “1 Girl, 5 Gays” representing Persons with Disability. To find out more, and book Andrew for opportunities to make disability accessible to you, please visit: or tweet him @amgurza1

  • Billy Santo

    Billy Santo

    I am 25 Years old and live in Quezon City in the Philippines. I was diagnosed with HIV in May 2015. I have never written about it before but want people living with HIV to share my experiences, learn how I have faced my challenges and follow a path to a long and healthy life.

  • Bob Leahy - Editor

    Bob Leahy - Editor

    Award-winning blogger Bob Leahy first made his social media mark a decade ago on where there are still to this day almost 3,000 entries of his available to be read. He was a featured blogger on Ontario’s campaign, along with founder Brian Finch. He joined at its inception in 2009 and became it's Editor a year later.

    Born in the UK, Bob’s background is in corporate banking, which he gladly left in 1994, after being diagnosed with HIV the previous year.  He has chaired the board of PARN (Peterborough AIDS Resource Network) and has been an executive board member of both the Ontario HIV Treatment Network (OHTN) and the Canadian AIDS Society (CAS).  He was inducted in to the Ontario AIDS Network’s Honour Roll in 2005.  Bob is currently a member of Ontario’s GMSH (Gay Men’s Sexual Health Alliance). He also writes for

    In 2012, Bob was honoured with the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee medal for his work and commitment to HIV/AIDS in Canada.

    Bob continues to write for this site while in the Positivelite.Com editor’s seat, with a particular interest  in HIV prevention, theatre and the arts in general. He is accredited media for a number of Toronto theatres. He lives in Warkworth, Ontario with his partner of thirty-two years and three dogs.

  • Brian Finch - Founder

    Brian Finch - Founder

    Brian Finch, founder of I've had a blog since 2005 when I decided one day that I just wanted to write. Since then I've grown to writing for a local Toronto magazine, Fab, and contribute to

    I first went public in the 1980s, and with the exception of a few years of taking a break, have not really stopped. More recently (relative to twenty years ago) in 2006 I was featured in the Ontario HIV Treatment Network's documentary "Positive Voices" filmed during the 2006 International AIDS Conference.
    The very same conference where I organized an action against the Conservative government for our Prime Minister not showing up, which is now known as "The Pillow Case Project" approximatel 1000 message-stenciled pillow cases were held up at the moment the government representative stood up causing an international photography sensation.
    During these years I was on the board of Canada's treatment advocacy NGO, the Canadian Treatment Action Council, and have been privileged to have worked with great activists internationally such as Africa.
    Life is an evolution, and today I am now the owner/publisher of, an online project to bring people (and our allies) living with HIV together in Canada and abroad. The vision is to bring the world together with a uniquely Canadian perspective.I first went public in the 1980s, and with the exception of a few years of taking a break, have not really stopped.

    More recently (relative to twenty years ago) in 2006 I was featured in the Ontario HIV Treatment Network's documentary "Positive Voices" filmed during the 2006 International AIDS Conference. 

    The very same conference where I organized an action against the Conservative government for our Prime Minister not showing up, which is now known as "The Pillow Case Project" approximatel 1000 message-stenciled pillow cases were held up at the moment the government representative stood up causing an international photography sensation. 

    During these years I was on the board of Canada's treatment advocacy NGO, the Canadian Treatment Action Council, and have been privileged to have worked with great activists internationally such as Africa. 

    Life is an evolution, apart from my contributing to, I've become a budding stand-up comic creating a new genre of comedy: candid comedy. Look out as there isn't much I don't talk about. 


  • CATIE - HIV and Hep C Info Resource

    CATIE - HIV and Hep C Info Resource

    CATIE is Canada’s source for up-to-date, unbiased information about HIV and hepatitis C. We connect people living with HIV or hepatitis C, at-risk communities, healthcare providers and community organizations with the knowledge, resources and expertise to reduce transmission and improve quality of life. For more details, please visit or call 1-800-263-1638.

    CATIE est la source d’information à jour et impartiale sur le VIH et l’hépatite C au Canada. Notre but est de partager les connaissances, les ressources et l’expertise avec les personnes vivant avec le VIH ou l’hépatite C, les communautés à risque, les fournisseurs de soins de santé et les organismes communautaires afin de diminuer la transmission des virus et d’améliorer la qualité de vie. Pour plus de renseignements, veuillez consulter ou appelez le 1.800.263.1638.

    Decisions about particular medical treatments should always be made in consultation with a qualified medical practitioner knowledgeable about HIV-related illness and the treatments in question.  CATIE’s full disclaimer

    Toute décision concernant un traitement médical particulier devrait toujours se prendre en consultation avec un professionnel ou une professionnelle de la santé qualifié(e) qui a une expérience des maladies liées au VIH et des traitements en question. Déni de responsabilité de CATIE 

  • Christian Dolan

    Christian Dolan

    Christian Dolan is a London, England based Digital Marketer with a passion for all things Content and Social. When not sitting at his desk working, he is an avid HIV activist who volunteers regularly for HIV charities by fundraising and offering his time and support in helping to break down HIV stigma. Christian is an active committee member for The National AIDS Trust (NAT) World AIDS Day campaign and has been HIV Positive since 2009. For enjoyment Christian is an avid TV marathon watcher as well a regular runner, cyclist and gym junkie which he regularly tweets an about under @Dolantalks

  • Colin Johnson

    Colin Johnson

    Born in Jamaica in 1958. Emigrated to Canada in 1972.  Advocate for gay rights from 70’s. Has held various positions with provincial, municipal and federal governments in Canada. Diagnosed HIV+ in 1984, recommitted to battling HIV discrimination and stigma.

    Has volunteered with various AIDS Service Oranizationss in Toronto; presently attached to Fife House as facilitator for volunteer training and Peer KTE officer. Also facilitates at the OHSUTP (Ontario HIV and Substance Use Program). 

    He continues to advocate for human rights especially where it impacts Black and gay issues. He sits on the GIPA/MIPA committees of BlackCAP and Fife House as well as the OAN (Ontario AIDS Network) Board of Directors. 

    Bibliophile and lover of TV, movies and film especially action and Sci-fi

  • Daniel Uy - Urban Yogi

    Daniel Uy - Urban Yogi

    Daniel Uy is a Toronto-based Yoga Teacher and Practitioner. He teaches several different styles of yoga throughout the city and more information about his work can be found on He has been HIV+ since 1997 at the ripe old age of 21yrs old. He has a light-hearted approach to life and is an eternal optimist.

    He shares stories and information on health, wellness, and spirituality beyond the pharmaceutical and religious realms. And will also share and discuss some of his favourite pastimes – spinning poi, reading, yoga, meditation and hamburgers. Metta.

  • David Phillips

    David Phillips

    David Phillips is a native of the Washington, DC area and is a subject for studies of HIV long-term non-progressors at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases/NIH. After a prolonged seroconversion illness at 17, he chose willful ignorance of his HIV status for almost 20 years due to a difficult prior neurosurgical history. David currently pursues a Master of Public Health majoring in epidemiology at the University of Maryland. His research interests include secular trends in depressive symptoms among people living with HIV and the impact of variations in standards of care on the health of HIVers in resource-poor communities. Follow him at where he often tweets photos of culinary creations with hashtag #foodporn

  • Denise Wozniak

    Denise Wozniak

    Infected HIV at age 29 in 1989, diagnosed with daughter 1994.  Diagnosed chronic PTSD.  Canadian.

    Recipient: Queen Elizabeth II Gold and Diamond Jubilee Medals.  Certified Speaking Coach. Hobby: Photography

  • Dennis Battler

    Dennis Battler

    Dennis lives in Toronto Ontario and has been living with HIV for 3 years “I’ve returned to my love for words. Twenty year’s pursuit of connection with my Realized Self, presented in mysticism and Eastern Practices, informs my writing. My intention? To expand consciousness of both self and the audience.

    Life's learning? Life’s zenith rollercoaster is normal. There’s nothing wrong. Surprise. Single with Pets.”

  • DJ Relentless

    DJ Relentless

    Originally from Tampa Florida, Toronto's newest import DJ RELENTLESS is a Queer African-American house music DJ/Remixer/radio personality who concluded a historic 12-year residency in 2010 at New York's famed Escuelita nightclub. 
    Music fans can score the very latest releases in his widely celebrated series of promo only CDs mixed exclusively by DJ RELENTLESS on his blogs for as well on his website ( ). A music subscription service is also available, and don't forget to ask about the historic "Relentlessly Cunty" 5 volume set of cunty beatz and ballroom/runway classics.

    My alter-ego:

    JADE ELEKTRA is a legendary Queer African-American drag entertainer, nightlife personality, performing/recording artist, film/television/stage actress and outspoken HIV status symbol and role model. She has performed the world over with everyone from Harmonica Sunbeam to Beyonce, from Ill NaNa DiverseCity Dance Company to Calista Flockhart, from MJ White to Bermuda's Sybil Barrington.

    Her classic underground c-c-cunty anthems include "Bitch, You Look Fierce", "How Do I Look?", "Why Are You Gaggin'?", "What-Evah", "RIF (Reading Is Fundamental)", "She Turns It", "You Bettah Feel It", "This Is What We Call A Bitch Track" and "Trade".

    HIV for 22 years, Miss Elektra premiered her groundbreaking new single "HIVogue" on World AIDS Day December 1st, 2010 with epic remixes by Vjuan Allure, DJ Fierce Tease, and, of course, her less-glamorous twin brother DJ Relentless!

    In 2011 crowned Miss Play 2011 and Miss Toronto Continental Elite, Jade's freshly re-issued album Proud Mary: 10th Anniversary Edition (2nd Level Records) features the hit singles "Bitch You Look Fierce", "Why Are You Gaggin'?" and "What-Evah!" plus five bonus tracks including "Don't Explain", "How Do I Look?" and "HIVogue".

    Remixes of "HIVogue" by Vjuan Allure, Chip Chop and DJ Fierce Tease go on sale on iTunes as soon as she is able to locate a non-profit organization that is willing to take on the controversial subject matter of AIDS Awareness and sex sites in a track. Be on the look-out for her new single with The Snatsch Sisters called "Realness" in 2012.

    Together or separately, DJ RELENTLESS and JADE ELEKTRA are a force to be reckoned with! Please stay tuned to Facebook for their latest club nights, parties, events, music video releases and booking information.


    Relentless Entertainment (NYC/Toronto)

    (Plus you can find Jade Elektra and DJ Relentless on twitter)


  • Don Short: life in transit

    Don Short: life in transit

    Don Short, born in Toronto but raised and reared in Newfoundland, is a writer in the making. His passion for words propels him to articulate the stuff of life, and writing about it has carried him through much of the trauma and transition life can bring. The blog here at will explore the shifting transitions that occur when aging with HIV, marked by significant and incidental happenings that pivot an individual backwards or forwards.  Don is currently writing two books and attends a narrative writing group. Don is also an award winning artist and father of three.

    You can reach him at, and follow him on twitter @don_penscaper 

  • Ed Wolf

    Ed Wolf

    Ed Wolf, a native of New York City, moved to San Francisco in 1976. He’s been working in the HIV field since 1983, as chronicled in the award-winning documentary, “We Were Here”. He worked as a Shanti counselor on Ward 5-A at San Francisco General Hospital, the first designated AIDS unit in the world. He’s developed HIV-related curriculum and provided training and technical support for a large number of national and international organizations and institutions, including the California State Office of AIDS, the UCSF AIDS Health Project in San Francisco and the AIDS Healthcare Foundation in Los Angeles. Other projects include classroom training and technical assistance in South Africa, Uganda and Zimbabwe to increase the effectiveness of adherence counseling in MTN (Microbicide Treatment Network) Clinical Trials. He has also been the lead content developer of an e-learning training in collaboration with the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health, and the Department of Health and Human Services, as well as delivering adherence counseling trainings and technical assistance for staff in the iPrEx Clinical Trails in both North and South America. Ed is currently providing the Personalized Cognitive Counseling Training for HIV counselors through the San Francisco Department of Public Health. He was the first HIV Content Expert Writer for, one of the world’s largest internet-based information websites. Ed has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and was awarded the HIV National Educator of Year Award from the You can find out more about him at

  • Félix Garmendía

    Félix Garmendía

    "I was born in Ponce, Puerto Rico in the 60s. Living in Puerto Rico, and growing up there was a bumpy process. I was very aware of my homosexual identity at a very early age, so fighting the stigma was a very intense journey in my native island.

    I love art. The Ponce Art Museum was my shelter since I was in high school. As my first job ever, I guided bilingual tours for locals and tourists from all over the world.

    In high school, I was introduced to music and theater, after that, I chose to pursue a B.A. in theater at the U.P.R. ( University of Puerto Rico ). Rio Piedras campus.

    In college, I discovered many things about myself. My sexual identity became established, my religious beliefs changed dramatically and my awareness of my role in society became the first and biggest challenge of my life. I became a proud gay man, an atheist and an activist. The political climate in Puerto Rico was very far away from recognizing any kind of gay rights so I knew that I needed a community that I could call my own, and be myself. After several years in Puerto Rico, in my twenties, I moved to N.Y.C. to pursue a Master’s Degree in Art Education and Art Criticism at New York University. I decided to stay in Manhattan. Here I found myself. I discovered my passions, causes to fight for, and the strong community that I always dreamed of. I became a passionate man with strong convictions.

    After graduation I became a N.Y.C. school teacher. I taught art in the South Bronx, Spanish Harlem and Upper Manhattan for 15 years.

    Sometime in my twenties, I was exposed to HIV. I tested HIV-positive and after a serious depression, came out strong and victorious. I became an AIDS activist. My passions in life became the gears that fed energy into my existence.

    Very early in my N.Y.C. years, I became a staunch liberal. All my causes were related. I was trying to survive in a world where not everybody cared if I did or not. Politics made clear who cared for me as a human being.

    That’s why I’m very vocal about my postings. Not because I want to convince anybody, but I do it for those who, like me, once needed some direction in life. I want to share the "real" me with those friends with similar beliefs or at least respect for my beliefs.

    Today, I still live in Manhattan. I’m legally married to my husband Denis Beale and I’m disabled. My life is not easy, I have several health related conditions that are a real challenge these days. This bring me to another one of my causes. From personal experience, I believe in the legalization of cannabis (marijuana). 

    I consider myself a loving, compassionate and spiritual person. I have no patience for bigotry, especially the kind of sanctimonious bigotry that wraps itself in prayer and fake compassion.

    This is a synopsis of who I am. It would be really helpful to start introducing myself with my favorite warning. Warning: I’m human, far from perfect, passionate about life, the pursue of difficult answers, and the conviction that we are all equal."

    Felix has been featured in The Huffington Post’s Queer Voices; see the piece here

    You can follow Felix on Facebook here or here and on twitter @PozHeart

  • Guest Authors - Revolving Door

    Guest Authors - Revolving Door

    The Revolving Door is the place where we publish occasional articles by guest writers. If you would like to submit an article for publication, please contact editor Bob Leahy at
  • Jeff Potts

    Jeff Potts

    Jeff Potts was and remains motivated by his own HIV infection twenty-five years ago.  In his life and his career, Jeff is inspired by Helen Keller and shares this goal: "I long to accomplish great and noble tasks, but it is my chief duty to accomplish humble tasks as though they were great and noble.  The world is moved along, not only by the mighty shoves of its heroes, but also by the aggregate of the tiny pushes of each honest worker." 

    Jeff was a national programs consultant at the Canadian AIDS Society from November 2014 until January 2016.  Before that, he was a long-time public servant. His last position was with the Public Health Agency of Canada as the (national) manager of the Hepatitis C Prevention, Support and Research Program.  Before that, he held health portfolio positions at Health Canada and at Correctional Service Canada; and before that (way back), he was one of the earliest representatives of CATIE. Over the years, Jeff has spoken about and/or represented public health policy and programs on countless occasions across Canada, and at international meetings in more than twelve countries around the world.  Jeff is a proud and active member of the Canadian Positive People Network (the CPPN) where he shares unyielding resolve to improve and protect the health, quality of life and social condition of people living with HIV and HIV co-infections in Canada - and everywhere!

  • John McCullagh - Publisher

    John McCullagh - Publisher

    John McCullagh is the publisher of He's an HIV-positive gay man who’s been active in Toronto's LGBTQ community since immigrating to Canada from his native Britain in 1975. A social worker by profession, he's worked in government and the not-for-profit sector in both front-line and management positions. His experience includes research, policy analysis, strategic planning, program development, project management, and communications.  

    In the early years of the AIDS epidemic, John was a counsellor at the Toronto Counselling Centre for Lesbians and Gays (now known as David Kelley Services), an organization he co-founded and which was one of the first agencies in Toronto to offer professional counselling to those infected with and affected by HIV. 

    Now retired, John volunteers with the AIDS Committee of Toronto (ACT) and is a board member of CATIE, Canada’s national HIV and Hepatitis C knowledge broker.  

    John regularly contributes articles to about his personal experiences of living with HIV and about issues relevant to Canada's HIV and LGBTQ communities.

  • Josh


    I am a 26-year old man, living in Toronto. In June of 2014, I tested positive for HIV. Seeing that in writing is still surreal to me.

    My journey has just begun; while it is a journey I certainly did not envision taking, it’s one that I must now take nonetheless. While there’s lots of scientific and medical research information out there, I haven’t found much that chronicles the journey of a positive person. This blog aims to provide that kind of outlet.

    I am choosing to write this blog anonymously. Not because I’m ashamed, and not because I think there would be repercussions of sharing my name. An anonymous story lets me be freer. I don’t have to worry about holding back. I hope that you will not find this blog has less meaning for that reason.

    I am trying to handle this new life in the best way I know how: with a touch of humour. It isn’t easy to find laughter in this situation, but I am trying. I hope this blog will reflect a bit of that too, but it will also share the serious stories, fears and issues I face as I take this journey.

    I’d love to hear from you. Commenting on posts is welcome, but you can also reach me on Twitter; I’m @PlusSideOfLife. I'm also on Facebook here. My home bog, The Plus Side of Life, is here.

  • Joshua Middleton

    Joshua Middleton

    My name is Joshua Middleton and I am a HIV+ heterosexual newly diagnosed male from Murrieta, California  that is putting a face to this virus. I am an activist, blogger, v-logger, and educator. I am one of millions of people battling this virus day in and day out looking to share my experience in an effort to prevent others from ending up in my same situation. 

  • Ken Monteith - Montreal Correspondent

    Ken Monteith - Montreal Correspondent

    Ken Monteith was diagnosed with AIDS and 4 CD4 cells in 1997. Ken is a recovering lawyer (it's a process!) living in Montréal, where he obsessively counts his CD4s with equal fluency in English and French, pausing only to glare at those who dare to taunt him with their higher numbers.
  • Lolo: In Significance

    Lolo: In Significance

    I descend from a maternal line of women with zany senses of humour. Their raucous laughter was energizing, creative and amusing, and they were larger-than-life characters. From these grand, generous and gregarious gals I inherited deep interest in people and their wellbeing. While I have been employed in the caring professions, no doubt influenced by these formidable foremothers, my natural habitat is in circumstances of refracted rather than bright light. An ethnographer by day, I spend time listening, lurking, pondering and observing. Specifically, I am captivated by and genuinely interested in the stories that we, ordinary, everyday people, tell about our lives. Therein lies much learning and wisdom. In understanding the often taken-for-granted circumstances of our lives, we bear witness with humility. There is a promise of transcendence in this exercise. 

    I am an HIV importer. I brought this infection back to Canada after living, working and, alas, loving overseas. Thankfully I am a citizen. Had I not been, the possibility of returning for care and treatment would have been shut. Ms. ELISA and her companion Mr. Western Blot changed my life and its direction. My coming out as a positive woman occurred through my address at a Canadian AIDS Society PHA Forum a decade ago when I was in my thirties. I owe my life to supporters who cradled me in early days after diagnosis. I am indebted to caring souls who have more recently guided me to understand the ebbs and flows of anxiety and depression. They help me cultivate knowledge about and a language to express such ideas as acceptance, compassion, patience and guiltless self-care. I am sad that HIV stood in the way of becoming a mother. I am troubled that the movement and migration of people with HIV continue to be fettered in certain contexts. I am haunted that while I can thrive, my former lover, who suffered, withered and died, could not. This is evidence that socio-political boundaries and legal geographies kill.


    In contributing to, I seek to connect the dots between the personal and political by exploring the issues gestured toward above, among others. To do this, I propose to deploy my ethnographic skills of listening, observing and analyzing to make the lineaments of everyday people’s lives visible; beginning, it might not surprise you, from the experiences of yours truly: the most ordinary of people!

  • Louis

    Louis "Kengi" Carr - L.A. Correspondent

    Louis "Kengi" Carr is a California native, born and raised in Santa Monica. He is a published photographer, writer and guest speaker. Formerly a private chef and events caterer, this formerly homeless, HIV positive, proud Angelino is now a activist and advocate for people with HIV and homeless individuals. He is the creator/founder of Project Kengikat, Do Something Saturday, Unplugging HIV and the author of 29 Months.

    A lover of photography, blogging and vlogging and USC Football, Kengi has been rediscovering his love for Los Angeles, ceramics, painting and cooking while elevating the conversations of HIV and homelessness. He enjoys being outdoors, spending quality time with his friends and his amazing rescue dog Dodger.

  • Mark S. King - My Fabulous Disease

    Mark S. King - My Fabulous Disease

    Mark S. King and his very funny site "My Fabulous Disease" must share some DNA with Positive Lite, because his light-hearted approach to living with HIV feels just like family. "My Fabulous Disease" has the authority of Mark's lifelong HIV activism mixed with the wit of your favorite gay uncle.

    Check out his full blog and more at: My Fabulous Disease

  • Matt Levine

    Matt Levine

    Despite a passionate childhood love affair with iceberg lettuce and anything sugary, Matt Levine has spent 27 years in the natural and organic foods business.  These days he drives a pedicab in San Francisco and is the co-creator of the podcast Corncuopia; The Cult, Culture and Business of Food

    Born in Stamford, Connecticut, he lived in some of the grungier areas of New York City before moving to the Elysian Fields of San Francisco in 1989.

    Despite graduating from college with honors, he drove a taxicab in Manhattan, a decision he credits with his father's refusal to co-sign a loan to open a natural foods store in his hometown.Matt tries to make those who would listen believe that said store of his dreams would have sold to Whole Foods for millions of dollars.Regardless, his love for his father remained and he is only occasionally bitter, mainly for dramatic effect.

    In addition to driving a tricycle, he also works as a freelance research analyst publishes Natural Business News, home to the industry's only humor and satire section and the Cornucopia podcast . In his free time, he mentors at-risk youth, eats too quickly, suffers acid reflux but is hoping meditation gets ride of it and follows his beloved New York Mets with more passion than is advisable.

  • Maya Cole

    Maya Cole

    Maya Cole is a trans mental health advocate, who has been involved in a variety of causes and activism since she was 17. Maya describes herself as a cerebral feminist, agent provocateur and sexual freedom fighter (as an active member of Toronto’s BDSM community).  

    A strong proponent of anti-oppression in HIV/AIDS work and health promotion, Maya has been HIV+ for 8 years. She also lives with bipolar disorder, which has helped her to reaffirm her commitment to self-care and improvement through therapy, meditation, yoga and other spiritual practices. Maya believes in strengthening the link between the physical, mental and emotional planes of one’s self-care - especially in their experience of living with HIV. 

    Maya is a lover of her English foxhound Beau, graphic novels, landscape photography, coffee and cheesecake

    Twitter/Instagram: @themayacole

  • Megan DePutter

    Megan DePutter

    Megan DePutter is the Training Manager for Terrence Higgins Trust in Glasgow, Scotland. A relatively recent transplant from Kitchener, Ontario, Megan enjoys exploring the city of Glasgow and all it has to offer while moaning about the weather.  Megan has worked in the voluntary sector for more than 10 years and spent 5 of those years working in the HIV field where she honed her passion and commitment to addressing the needs of people living with and at risk of HIV and AIDS. Megan manages the Learning Centre at Terrence Higgins Trust in Scotland to provide a range of HIV and sexual health related training.  

    Her blogs represent her own opinions.

  • Michael Bouldin

    Michael Bouldin

    Michael was born in California in 1970 – actually, hatched from an egg – and spent the next twenty years of his life hopping across the globe, wherever America saw fit to station troops for some inexplicable reason. In what was likely a fit of absent-mindedness, he acquired a Masters in Communications, Political Science and Comparative Literature from the University of Mainz in West Germany, probably because it was roughly equidistant to the clubs of Paris, London and Berlin. Along the way, he modeled, tended bar, wrote copy, ran an ad agency, got bored, and moved to New York City. He remains there today, making a living as a wordsmith and creative brain, all the while making sure nobody ever sees that portrait in the attic. 

    Oh, and before he partnered up, he probably slept with your boyfriend.

  • Michael Yoder

    Michael Yoder

    Michael Yoder currently works with POZitively Connected, a project of Vancouver Island Persons Living with HIV AIDS Society. Positively Connected provides social connection and support to gay/bi men living with HIV. He has previously sat on the board of directors of the Canadian AIDS Society (CAS), and has been involved in the HIV/AIDS movement since 1987. He worked with CAS in development and writing of the One Foot Forward Series of self training modules for people living with HIV and other work. Michael is always available for writing work, workshop development/presentation as well as public speaking.

    Michael's social media connections are @michaely1961 on twitter and on Facebook here.

  • Ontario HIV Treatment Network - Research

    Ontario HIV Treatment Network - Research

    The Ontario HIV Treatment Network is an independent, not-for-profit organization funded by the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care.  We are a network composed of:

    • People with HIV
    • Academic and community-based researchers
    • Members of AIDS service organizations and other community groups
    • Decision makers from all levels of government and various community groups
    • Health care providers

    We promote excellence and innovation in HIV treatment, research, education and prevention in Ontario to:

    • Improve the health and well being of people with HIV
    • Contribute to HIV prevention efforts
    • Promote knowledge exchange among all HIV stakeholders
    • Ensure value for resources

    For more information the OHTN please visit their website.


  • Patrick Italo Ettenes

    Patrick Italo Ettenes

    I was born and brought up in sunny Barbados. I come from a very loving family whom I still to this day adore with all my heart. I'm a very happy go lucky kinda guy. I'm pretty well traveled. I've lived and studied in different parts of the world which I think has made me understand the human race just a tad bit better. My friends are fast from traveling but my heart will always remain where they are. In the Caribbean.

    At 15 I received a Scholarship for psychology where I lived in Cuba for about a Year. Moved to England and studied and lived for six years. Lived in Panama for two years and am now back in England, where I've managed to hold a column in OutNorthWest Magazine. I've been interviewed by BBC Out North West Tonight, been on radio with Mike Robinson, been a panelist on HIV matters aired on Gaydio, also in front of a live audience on HIV matters, and was interviewed for Worlds Aids Day for a video.

    My blog The Broken Bones

    Facebook page

    Twitter @PEttenes

    Google plus 

  • Philip J H Dawson

    Philip J H Dawson

    Living in the vibrant city of Toronto sets the tone for what Philip writes and the adventure it takes. It may take the form of a poem or a play – though interviewing is Philip's favourite way to express himself through his writing. As with many people, Philip passionately and without hesitation reached out and walked toward helping his friends/peers who were all fighting, falling and dying during the early years of AIDS. It is in their memory – and in their crushing loss – that Philip continues to light his torch to help today’s PHA see a little better, believe they can live without fear, and to breath some of his passion to find their strength to be pro-active in today’s world. Philip's creativity and ability to inspire reflects through growth in the words he writes so a piece comes to life in it's own time.

    Follow Philip on twitter at @PhilipJHDawsonP

  • Philip Minaker - Style

    Philip Minaker - Style

    Philip Minaker has been a regular contributor to since its inception in 2009.  Many of his pieces on fashion, style and pop culture for have also been reposted on numerous sites around the world. 

    Being diagnosed as HIV-positive in 1983 (when it was literally a death sentence) he initially chose to keep it to himself and continued to forge an extensive career in the fashion industry. It was not until the death of his grandmother (the love of his life), also in 2009, that he became comfortable with the idea of coming out regarding his HIV status. “For me, it was yet another ordeal I had to learn to live with while I continued to hope for better days ahead. Like other unpredictable and disturbing events that had occurred in my life, I have done my best to not let it fully define or consume me. I have however, recognized it as a part of who I am and made the necessary concessions over the years in my efforts to live a fulfilling, productive and happy life.” Philip has now been “undetectable” for nearly ten years. 

    He officially moved from Winnipeg to Toronto in 1990 and continues to make a life for himself, which is an ongoing work in progress. Recently, Philip chose to combine his professional and personal passions into the pet industry by forging a unique ambience and perspective in managing and buying for an independently owned full service pet shop, naturally, right in the heart of downtown Toronto. He is having the time of his life!

  • Poppy Morgan

    Poppy Morgan

    Poppy Morgan, an HIV negative woman, created a blog ( in 2008 to document her journey of living life with an HIV positive spouse. Her blog chronicles part of the process of finding a safe and affordable method of conception. In 2011, Poppy began taking Truvada or PrEP, as a means to naturally conceive a child with her HIV positive husband. After 17 cycles of taking PrEP, Poppy finally gave birth to a healthy, HIV negative baby girl in April 2013.  She is considering taking Truvada again to bring an additional bundle of joy to their family. 

    Poppy's Twitter handle is @poprock333 

  • Rob Olver

    Rob Olver

    Robert W. Olver is a former education worker with an alternative life in experimental music. Currently retired and living in Peterborough, Ontario, he is a gentleman of leisure and the friend of all cats everywhere.

    On October 14 2015 Robert  celebrated the first anniversary of his HIV diagnosis. Yes, that’s right. Celebrated.

    “It was given to me just after my birthday and just a few days before I was to retire. I felt a bit overwhelmed initially but there’s nothing like a crisis to help you sort out what’s important to you. Let’s just say I found myself needing to revise some of my plans.

    A year on, I find much to celebrate and I’ll be blogging to explain just what I mean by that and lots of other things as I navigate this journey".

  • Rodney Rousseau

    Rodney Rousseau

    Rodney Rousseau is from small-town Northwestern Ontario. Now living in Toronto, he is pursuing a career in HIV immunology research. Rodney advocates for accessible and impactful basic science research, and believes that integrating people living with HIV into the research environment and decision-making is integral to that goal. Rodney has been engaged with HIV and LGBT work for over five years, with experience in grassroots advocacy, outreach, event planning, volunteer management, and governance. Follow Rodney on twitter @RodneyKyle.

  • Samantha


    My name is Samantha and I live in British Columbia, Canada. I am an ordinary woman trying my best on the dating scene as a woman living with HIV to connect with men for intimacy, a relationship and the kind of satisfying sex I used to have before my diagnosis. 

    During the day I teach at a local school and am involved in HIV prevention work for special occasions and during our spring break week where we set up community kiosks for students. I speak with students about HIV facts, and provide the latest information relating to HIV research to demystify HIV while attempting to eliminate fear and stigma. 

    My stories posted on will provide a better understanding of the complexities of disclosure and how they are interconnected and impact aspects of our lives while working to normalize HIV and experience more positive disclosures. Although I write from the perspective of a woman, and will explain through story telling how disclosure complexities are somewhat different for women, I do recognize some common themes for all people living with HIV. 

    I look forward to sharing my stories, connecting with people living with HIV who are having similar experiences, integrating disclosure into daily conversations within all communities and learning from others through their feedback and comments

  • Steven Hobé

    Steven Hobé

    Steven was co-diagnosed with Hepatitis C and HIV in 2009. He went through the harrowing Interferon treatment for the Hep C in 2010 — a dark period in his life, to be sure — but was cured as a result. He now believes strongly in speaking openly about his experiences, both past and present, in the hopes to inspire others not to suffer in silence, as he once did.
    Much of Steven's time is spent running his marketing & communications firm, HOBÉ+HOSOKAWA INC., alongside his life-partner. When time allows, he avidly studies contemporary classical music composition and analysis, as well as Japanese. Continued learning and growth have become a passion for him. Surrounded by three black cats, Steven can freely dabble in the dark arts, finding great solace and inspiration in his furry friends. 
  • T. C. Pomeroy

    T. C. Pomeroy

    Despite his belief that you’re only as sick as your secrets, T.C. Pomeroy is in fact a pseudonym for a San Francisco based author. Pomeroy, who has been HIV positive for more than 25 years, developed his sexual neuroses prior to the AIDS years.  His lack of adolescent sexual experimentation in his teen years in the 1970’s along with the fact that the older men he thought he was becoming friends with disregard his pleasure while fucking him with gleeful abandon.  Despite being naïve and innocent Pomeroy understands that he too played a role in his awkward sexual development, but also sometimes wonders if the guys who fucked him ever realized how callous they were. 

  • Wayne Bristow - Positive Life

    Wayne Bristow - Positive Life

    I'm a poz guy, just starting my tenth year living with HIV. I've been blogging here at since March 20th, 2011. I volunteer at two AIDS Service Organizations in my area, ACG (AIDS Committee of Guelph/Wellington) and ACCKWA (AIDS Committee of Cambridge Kitchener Waterloo and Area). I've also been blogging for ACG since November 2010. I am a self-taught social media junkie doing facebook and twitter. I'm a great retweeter. I was recently hired by the OHTN (Ontario HIV Treatment Network) as a Peer Research Assistant. In my spare time I am a hobby photographer; some of my photos show up in my blog.

    Now that you've read a bit about me, check out our other great bloggers and follow along. We are THE site that is by and for people living with HIV