– Mayor Vincent C. Gray convened the first meeting of the Mayor’s Host Committee for the AIDS 2012 Conference today. Mayor Gray created the Committee to facilitate the District’s participation in the premiere gathering of scientists, health professionals and people living with and affected by this epidemic. AIDS 2012 will take place at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center from July 22-27, 2012 and will host nearly 200 countries and 25,000 delegates.
I am pleased that this International AIDS Conference has chosen Washington, DC as host to this important and influential event," said Mayor Gray. "I call on every sector of the District of Columbia including the diplomatic community, federal government, local government, private industries, academic institutions, community activists and the residents of the District of Columbia to think creatively about how to support the conference."
The Mayor’s Host Committee will serve as an integral part of the logistical planning for next year’s conference, and
will advise the Director of the Department of Health, the Senior Deputy Director of HAHSTA and the Mayor on issues and matters relating to the District’s sponsorship of the International AIDS Conference.
During today’s first meeting, Mayor Gray charged the Committee with the following five duties:
- Work with the International AIDS Conference Local Secretariat to plan and coordinate the XIX International Conference to ensure a successful conference.
- Work with DOH and HAHSTA to provide a showcase for the District HIV/AIDS program.
- Promote and facilitate communication and coordination among District government agencies to assist in the planning of the XIX International Conference.
- Provide assistance to DOH and HAHSTA in arranging tours for conference attendees to HIV/AIDS care and support facilities in the District.
- Maximize with the appropriate District agencies and officials, the potential for business and employment opportunities for District based businesses and residents related to this international meeting.
The Committee also heard testimony from Tiffany Chester, Head of Local Secretariat, AIDS 2012 and discussed key areas of partnership that would help to facilitate ongoing planning efforts.
"The Host committee will work closely with the local secretariat to ensure that the District is the best host for this conference that it can be," said DOH Director Dr. Mohammad Akhter. "This Committee brings together our established partners with new organizations to increase the scope, influence, and impact of our work, so that we can increase our success."
Mayor’s Host Committee for AIDS 2012:
- The Honorable Vincent C. Gray, Mayor, Government of the District of Columbia
- Allen Lew, City Administrator, Government of the District of Columbia
- Beatriz "BB" Otero, Deputy Mayor of Health and Human Services, Government of the District of Columbia
- Victor Hoskins, Deputy Mayor of Planning and Economic Development, Government of the District of Columbia
- Dr. Mohammad Akhter, Director, Department of Health
- Dr. Gregory Pappas, Senior Deputy Director, Department of Health
- The Honorable Sharon Pratt, President and Committee, Opportunity Funding Corporation
- The Honorable Kwame Brown, Chairman, Council of the District of Columbia
- The Honorable David Catania, Councilmember-at-Large, Council of the District of Columbia
- Elliott Ferguson, President/CEO, Destination DC
- Shannon Hader, Vice President and Director, Center for Health Systems and Solutions
- Pat Hawkins, Executive Director, D. C. Community AIDS Network
- Paul A. Kawata, Executive Director, National Minority AIDS Council
- Solomon Keene, Jr. , President, Hotel Association of Washington DC
- Toni Young, Founder and Executive Director, Community Education Group
All members will work to welcome the thousands of visitors to the District to ensure that both they and our residents benefit from this major event.