Michael “Cabbie” Caban graduated from Queens College with a BA in Theater and Dance and a minor in Music. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he is currently a student at the School for International Training's Graduate Institute in Brattleboro, VT pursuing a Master of Arts in Social Justice and Intercultural Relations. He is a movement artist, an activist, a choreographer, an actor, and a singer. Most recently Cabbie performed with Hudson River Playback Theatre. Playback Theatre is a community-based improvisational theater form that gives voice to stories not usually heard, underscoring moments of significance and empowering the storyteller. He has worked doing special bilingual outreach to Spanish speaking and immigrant communities, and is especially trained in using Playback to help young people confront "Bullying". In 2008, Cabbie traveled to Bagamoyo, Tanzania through Cross-Cultural Solutions, an international volunteer sending organization, where he taught dance, drama, and ESL/EFL at two local NGO's. His experience living and working in East Africa was one of the most profound experiences of his life. Cabbie has been a dance and theater facilitator for various organizations including El Puente Leadership Center and High School for Peace and Justice in Brooklyn. In 2008, Cabbie founded The Collision Theory Performing Arts Collective, creating performance pieces inspired by human struggle and resilience. A highlight of the collective’s performances resulted in an invitation to participate in a choreographic showcase featuring the top social change artists in NYC. Collision Theory performed Inamoratas, a choreographic study integrating modern dance with traditional tango. This fusion of contemporary movement and folk dance commented on intercultural gender issues. Cabbie was a merit scholar-shipped participant in Dance Across Borders, an international dance symposium held at Bard College, exploring the role of dance in global and social transformation. His most recent experience has been as a national recruiter and public relations representative for The International Partnership for Service Learning and Leadership.
Jeremiah Johnson has been living with HIV for only 2 years, but his experience in the fight to stop the spread and stigma of HIV is already substantial. In January of 2008, Jeremiah tested positive with HIV while working in Ukraine as a Peace Corps Volunteer. When he said that he wanted to continue his work as a volunteer despite his new diagnosis, Peace Corps denied him the chance because, according to them, he would not be able to perform his duties as a volunteer. He was told that they couldn't provide adequate care for him in Ukraine, despite the fact that he was in good health. Finding this to be discriminatory, Jeremiah got in touch with the ACLU, and, after a great deal of publicity and intense negotiation, Peace Corps changed their policy on HIV. Now, no volunteer can be denied the right to continue serving based solely upon their HIV status. Although the need to battle stigma within Peace Corps is still very much alive, it was a crucial first step in gaining rights for HIV positive volunteers. Since the policy change, Jeremiah has continued to find ways that he can contribute to the fight against stigma. Jeremiah currently lives in Fort Collins, CO where he is attending classes at Colorado State University and working as a Case Manager and Prevention Specialist at the Northern Colorado AIDS Project. He has spoken at events around his community about his experience and worked to educate others about HIV. As a member of Volunteer Positive's Board of Advisors, Jeremiah hopes to help other individuals living with HIV to empower themselves and find their inner activist.
Gyorgy "George" Toth is a doctoral candidate in American Studies at The University of Iowa. He earned masters degrees from ELTE University, Budapest, Hungary in English Language and Literature and American Studies. His experience in the nonprofit sector includes volunteering and working for NGOs and university offices on two continents, such as the Boy and Girl Scouts of Hungary (1989-2004), the Institute of International Education at Bard College (2001-2002), the Federation of Regions (2003-2004), the Institute for International Education (2004), the International Forum for U.S. Studies (2005-2006), the Office of International Students and Scholars (2006-2007), and the graduate employee union at The University of Iowa (2007-2008, 2009-2010). In addition to completing the Institute on Philanthropy and Voluntary Service at Indiana University, Indianapolis in 2002, George has facilitated and served on panels on issues ranging from voting around the world, and resiliency, to international traditions of volunteerism, the international graduate student experience in the US, and he has facilitated workshops on cross-cultural communication. George has also served as volunteer consultant for community organizations working with the U.S. Department of State's various cultural diplomacy programs including Fulbright, small grants for democracy, and the International Writing Program at The University of Iowa. His dissertation will focus on the transatlantic relations of the American Indian rights movement of the 1970s-80s.
Lieselotte “Lottie” Zorn has ten years of experience in non-profit financial management and has spent the past five years as Board Treasurer for the Portland Gay Men’s Chorus. She currently serves as the accountant for These Numbers Have Faces, a non-profit organization that provides college scholarships to South African youth. Her accounting philosophy is grounded in conservatism, ethics, community service, and the belief that sound financial practices are the cornerstone of every great mission. Ms. Zorn holds a B.S. in Accounting from Linfield College and is a member of the Oregon Society of CPAs. She resides in Portland, Oregon with her partner and two lovely teenagers.
José Ricardo Maldonado Arroyo es un joven gay con VIH de Yucatán. Historiador y antropólogo de formación. Se desempeña como docente de historia en nivel medio superior. Actualmente es presidente de la Red de Personas Afectadas por VIH (REPAVIH), organización civil que trabaja con personas infectadas y afectadas por el VIH/SIDA. Se incorporó a REPAVIH en 2004, donde al poco tiempo comenzó a desempeñar un papel activo en la consejería y acompañamiento de sus pares. Ha adquirido notable experiencia en las áreas de capacitación, defensa de derechos humanos, gestión y movilización de recursos. Recientemente coordinó proyectos dirigidos a la prevención del VIH/SIDA y otras infecciones de transmisión sexual en jóvenes. En Yucatán contribuyó a la promoción de una iniciativa a favor del matrimonio entre personas del mismo sexo. Cuenta con publicaciones de investigación científica, de prevención de VIH/SIDA y ha colaborado en la elaboración de materiales sobre derechos humanos.
José Ricardo Maldonado Arroyo is a young gay man living with HIV in the Yucatan. He has training as a historian and anthropologist. In addition, he teaches history at a high school level. He is currently president of the Network of People Affected by HIV (REPAVIH), a civil organization working with people infected and affected by HIV / AIDS. REPAVIH joined in 2004, where he soon began to play an active role in counseling and peer support. Has acquired considerable experience in the areas of training, defense of human rights, management and resource mobilization. Recently he coordinated projects aimed at preventing HIV / AIDS and other sexually transmitted infections in young people. In the Yucatan he contributed to the promotion of an initiative in favor of same sex marriage . Has published scientific research on the prevention of HIV / AIDS and has collaborated in the development of human rights materials.
Micheal Mask has spent the past 15 years in the Investment Banking industry. His background includes derivative products, including extensive structured product experience, repo and securities lending work, and related traded products experience. Prior to joining Standard Chartered Bank, where he is Americas Head of the Wholesale Banking Legal -Master Documentation Unit, he was a Senior Vice-President at Bank of America. At Bank of America he headed up the hedge fund derivatives, repo, and securities lending documentation functions. Prior to that he held positions as Director, and Senior Manager of Fixed Income derivatives in the legal department of BNP Paribas, and as a Director within the legal department at UBS AG. He holds a J.D. from the University of Washington School of Law and is member of the Washington Bar. Michael is a world traveler, and avid antique rug expert, and profoundly motivated by social justice issues. He has been an active supporter of people affected with HIV and believes in supporting the dignity and respect of all people.
Mike Clifford earned a BA in Graphic Design from The College of Saint Rose and is the founder of Cliffordcreatives.com. He works in all forms of visual communication and marketing with extensive experience in branding, promotions, pre-press production and photography. A gifted visual artist and socially conscious community leader, Mike is an advocate for the diverse LGBTQ community and the HIV affected in the Capital District of New York. He has generously donated his time and talents to support Pride events and LGBTQ causes, and is a central organizing force with Hudson Valley Positive, a community based HIV+ managed social network for men living with HIV in the Hudson Valley. In addition, Mike has leveraged his warmth and charisma as an instructor engaging developmentally challenged individuals in self expression through photography and art. He would like to use his design talents to further the development of other worthy social causes and progressive organizations around the world as he grows his design company.He has been a generous and insightful colleague helping to shape the emerging look of Volunteer Positive and its evolving presence in the community both in the USA and abroad.