The title character in HBO’s Angels in America, she skipped the charity-auction circuit for a 2002 sojourn with women HIVers in Uganda. Her plea: “Why in the world do we find money for war when we are faced with AIDS?”
Whether surprising needle-exchangers with “a day of pampering” or calling out amfAR on overhead costs in 2002, La Liz remains the one-woman shock-and-awe attack on HIV.
Sister Mary Elizabeth Clark
This ex-Navy, transgender nun runs www. aegis.com, the world’s most comprehensive HIV-info site, from her California mobile home.
Bill T. Jones
In 1994, this positive dancer choreographed Still/Here based on workshops with the dying. This year, he created The Phantom Project: Still/Here Looking On, the perfect curtain call to a decade of defiance.
In 2000’s E! True Hollywood Story, this savvy-as-she-is-sexy HIV positive Playmate continued preaching safe sex to the straight community, reminding us that sometimes, an angel really is a centerfold.
South Africa’s longtime health minister and yes-woman to President Thabo “What AIDS?” Mbeki, she even stalled the country’s hard-won rollout of HIV meds—prescribing olive oil, lemon and garlic instead.
Rev. Fred Phelps
Ranting “God hates fags” at AIDS funerals, this professional bigot tried to build a Wyoming monument condemning the “gay martyr,” HIVer Matthew Shepard, to all hell.
Clinton’s tiny health honcho, Donna Do-Nothing backed the ban on fed funds for clean needles, leaving a legacy of HIV and hep C.
Sen. Jesse Helms
After two decades of spewing hatred against HIVers for their “deliberate, disgusting, revolting conduct,” an ailing Helms finally apologized for “failing” on AIDS on the eve of his retirement—but only to “innocent victims.”
Dr. Lorraine Hale
In 2002, she was convicted of stealing $766,000 from Hale House, her saintly mom’s charity home for babies with HIV. The funds were used to finance a musical about Rev. Martin Luther King.