Longtime Merck vaccine research VP Emilio Emini will head the non-profit International AIDS Vaccine Initiative… Health and Human Services AIDS policy director Christopher Bates has been appointed deputy director of the White House Office of National AIDS policy…South African treatment dynamo Zackie Achmat, one of Time Europe’s 36 “heroes of 2003” and a 2004 Nobel Peace Prize nominee, has become the South African Press Club’s Newsmaker of the Year…Publisher Bob Ross, 69, whose Bay Area Reporter covered AIDS in taboo times, died December 10 of diabetes complications…NYC AIDS Housing Network cofounder José “Joe” Capestany, 48, an unflagging advocate for low-income HIVers, died of AIDS December 9.