In honor of World AIDS Day this week, we have a very special speaker - Sandy Thurman, a renowned leader in the HIV field and a global advocate for vulnerable populations. For over 30 years, she has collaborated with a wide range of partners to advance development and management of HIV/AIDS programs and policies at the local, national, and global levels. While she is known most for her focus on HIV prevention, care and treatment, and policy, Ms. Thurman has made important contributions to polio eradication, women’s health and children’s health.
Currently, she serves as the Chief Strategy Officer in the United States Department of State’s Office of the U.S. Global AIDS Coordinator and Health Diplomacy. In this role, she works as a Senior Advisor to the Director of the Presidents Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) to coordinate all of the U.S. government’s global HIV/AIDS activities to achieve an AIDS-free generation, ensuring transparency, accountability, and impact.
Throughout her career, Ms. Thurman has held important leadership positions, including serving as Director the Office of National AIDS Policy ( AIDS Czar) under President Bill Clinton; Presidential Envoy on HIV/AIDS; Senior Advisor for Strategy and Development at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and as Director of both the Interfaith Health Program and the Joseph W. Blount Center for Health and Human Rights at the Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University.She also served as Director of Advocacy Programs for the Task Force for Child Survival and Development at the Carter Center and Executive Director of AID Atlanta. She also serves on the faculty at the Rollins School of Public Health; as the Chair of the Ethics & Governance Committee of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis & Malaria, on the board of FHI 360, and as Chief Strategy Advisor to the Board of Rotarians For Family Health & AIDS Prevention.
Ms. Thurman has an M.A. in Community Pastoral Care and HIV/AIDS from St. Paul’s University in Limuru, Kenya and a B.S. from Mercer University.