May #23 : Saving Faces - by Lauren Hauptman

POZ - Health, Life and HIV
Subscribe to:
POZ magazine
E-newsletters
Join POZ: Facebook MySpace Twitter Pinterest
Tumblr Google+ Flickr MySpace
POZ Personals
Sign In / Join
Username:
Password:

Back to home » Archives » POZ Magazine issues




Table of Contents

Plastic Explosion

Who's Afraid of Reinfection?

Don't Call Him 'Poster Boy'

Saving Faces

Grandmother Theresa

Surgical Rotations

Fate Expectations

Mirror Image

S.O.S.

Mailbox-May 1997

On Native Ground

Move Over, Elmo

Devil's in the Data

Cheesehead Shalala

Don't Cry for Me, Marijuana

The Pot Thickens

Fellatio Felon

Diver Dissed

French Roast

AZT Linked to Cancer in Mice

The Philadelphia Story

Fashion Victims

Say What

Legacy-Tom Stoddard

Skin Deep

Fall

She's Going to Live!

Obitu-Parry

A Delicate Bully Pulpit

La Dolce Morte

A Delicate Bully Pulpit

Damned but Beautiful

Dressed for Arrest

POZ Picks-May 1997

Hymn to a Gym

Bodies of Work

Healing Beauty

Longtime Companion

For Doom, the Bell Tolls

Whatta Cut Up

Health Club Horrors

Detoxicology

Protein Power

The Missing Zinc

Bad Blood

Lovely Labs

The Biology of Beauty

It's My Party

Beauty



Most Popular Lessons

The HIV Life Cycle

Shingles

Herpes Simplex Virus

Syphilis & Neurosyphilis

Treatments for Opportunistic Infections (OIs)

What is AIDS & HIV?

Hepatitis & HIV


email print

May 1997

Saving Faces

by Lauren Hauptman

Keith Lewis puts a positive spin on the modeling business

It's easy to hate something you don't know," says 33-year-old Keith Lewis, founder and owner of Proof Positive, a Los Angeles -- based agency of models and actors with HIV. "We're trying to show people that you can't just look at individuals and know they have this disease. We're putting a face on AIDS -- literally."

Lewis started the division of the Morgan Agency in 1994 when he saw an increase in casting requests for models with AIDS. Most queries were for gay publications, but when Advera, a nutritional-products company, sought PWAs for a campaign in Time, Newsweek and People, Lewis realized it was time to act. "We'd done fundraising for AIDS organizations, and we thought this could be an extension of that," he says.

Lewis and his associates decided to look outside the modeling industry for "someone who might be openly positive and commercially marketable, rather than someone already in the industry who happened to be positive."

An open call to area AIDS organizations drew a diverse crowd. "We just assumed we would be seeing a specific group -- you know, male, 30 to 35. We didn't," Lewis says. "We saw women who were 18, women who were 50, men who were grandfathers. These people had compelling stories that really taught us [about PWAs], and we wanted to give them a platform to speak from. We wanted to increase their visibility and help them educate people the way they had educated us."

More successful than Lewis ever expected, the Proof Positive division accounted for 25 percent of the Morgan Agency's yearly gross in 1996. "We treat it as a business in our day-to-day operations," Lewis says. "But in our long-term goals, we treat it as a cause. It's a labor of love."




[Go to top]

Join POZ Facebook Twitter Google+ MySpace YouTube Tumblr Flickr
Quick Links
Current Issue

HIV Testing
Safer Sex
Find a Date
Newly Diagnosed
HIV 101
Disclosing Your Status
Starting Treatment
Help Paying for Meds
Search for the Cure
POZ Stories
POZ Opinion
POZ Exclusives
Read the Blogs
Visit the Forums
Job Listings
Events Calendar


    andais
    Red House
    West Virginia


    slimcuteguy
    Asheville
    North Carolina


    TaintedloveDC
    Washington
    DC


    jacob2608
    Panama City Beach
    Florida
Click here to join POZ Personals!
Ask POZ Pharmacist

Talk to Us
Poll
Do you work with your doc to design your own treatment regimen?
Yes
No

Survey
PrEP Course

more surveys
Contact Us
We welcome your comments!
[ about Smart + Strong | about POZ | POZ advisory board | partner links | advertising policy | advertise/contact us | site map]
© 2014 Smart + Strong. All Rights Reserved. Terms of use and Your privacy.
Smart + Strong® is a registered trademark of CDM Publishing, LLC.