Since she was diagnosed with HIV in 2003, AIDS activist Marvelyn Brown hasn’t shied away from the limelight. The POZ cover girl has taken her story to television, with appearances ranging from The Oprah Winfrey Show to CNN, as well as to bookstores through her autobiography, The Naked Truth: Young, Beautiful and (HIV) Positive ($14.95, HarperCollins). On top of that, she has educated more than half a million people worldwide through public speaking engagements. But the 26-year-old native Tennessean recently brought her message of hope to a venue most people probably don’t associate with AIDS activism: Doritos bags.

Last year, Brown was honored by the Do Something Awards, which spotlight young community activists. She received $10,000 for Marvelous Connections, her global HIV consulting business that educates people about the virus while encouraging media companies to better integrate HIV awareness messaging into their programming. Marvelyn and 11 others are featured on Doritos bags across the country.

“I never imagined myself on the backs of millions of Doritos bags, but I’ve never been limited in terms of my HIV awareness message either,” Brown, 26, tells POZ.

What’s after snack food? “Whatever happens next will be a surprise to me and to you,” she says.

Always one to think outside the, er, bag,  the marvelous Brown has already surprised us plenty over the years.  

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