This year’s annual U.S. Conference on HIV/AIDS (USCHA) in Washington, DC, will be a love letter to Black women. With related events taking place from Tuesday, September 5, through Saturday, September 9, the conference brings together advocates, researchers, health care providers, pharmaceutical leaders, AIDS service organizations, entertainers, social media influencers and everyday folks living with and affected by HIV

Now in its 27th year, the conference, which is spearheaded by NMAC, offers several days of workshops, plenary luncheons, speakers, presentations on new research, an exhibit hall (stop by the POZ booth and say hello!) and numerous networking events. 

As always, diverse segments of the HIV community will be represented, but this year’s event shines the spotlight on one specific group. “USCHA will send love to all the Black women in our movement by sharing stories, honoring those that we’ve lost and showcasing current leaders on the front lines,” explain the organizers on, where you can find details about the agenda, exhibitors and more.

The opening plenary lunch on Wednesday, September 6, is titled “A Love Letter to Black Women.” U.S. Representative Maxine Waters (D–Calif.), a staunch supporter of HIV issues, will be the keynote speaker; the event will also feature performance by the soulful women of Sweet Honey in the Rock, a group rooted in African-American history and culture.

On other days, the plenary luncheons—during which all attendees gather in one space to dine during presentations—will also highlight Black women. Saturday’s plenary session, for example, will star a lineup of Black women working in the federal government to end the HIV epidemic, including representatives from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Food and Drug Administration and the National Institute of Health’s (NIH) Office of Research on Women’s Health.

Preconference events on Tuesday include a Black Women’s Summit, a virtual presentation titled “NIH HIV and Aging Research: Current Landscape and Opportunities” and a daylong presentation from the U.S. HIV/AIDS Faith Coalition titled “Faith Forward: Contemplating Faith, Celebrating the Divine Feminine, & Combating HIV Stigma.”

NMAC’s institute for its Gay Men of Color fellows promises to be another standout event. The three-hour session will pair young advocates with long-term HIV activists for an intergenerational discussion on advocacy, including strategies, education and more.

Throughout the conference, USCHA attendees will have numerous morning and afternoon workshops to choose from. The following small selection gives you an idea of the array of topics that will be covered:

  • Engaging HBCUs to Diversify the HIV Workforce: Evidence2Practice (E2P) Program

  • We Have Sex, Too! Older Gay Men and Biomedical Interventions

  • Am I a Risk Factor? Addressing Stigma, Social Determinants and Interventions for the Transgender Community

  • Black Girl Magic in the Hep Space

  • Unbreakable Spirit: Championing PrEP and Co-Regulation for Black Women

  • The Art of Connection: Using Ballroom as Catalysts for Empowerment

  • Si, se puede!: Engaging Latines in Clinical Research

  • Unraveling Molecular HIV Surveillance: Detangling Criminalization From Public Health Activities

  • Match Made in Heaven: Trauma-Informed Care and Harm Reduction

  • Henrietta Lacks: Addressing Past Medical Mistrust to Implement Long-Acting Injectables

  • Models of the Housing-First Approach: Detroit Metro

  • QUEENS: How Drag Performers Are Leading the Fight Against Racism

For a list of workshops organized by topic, such as “Race & Racism” and “Biomedical HIV Prevention,” click here.

To learn more about the conference, watch the orientation video below: