Mission

Sero centers PLHIV leadership to end HIV criminalization, mass incarceration, racism and social injustice by supporting inclusive PLHIV networks to improve policy outcomes, advance human rights and promote healing justice.

 

What We Do

Sero is focused on ending inappropriate criminal prosecutions of PLHIV, including for non-disclosure of their HIV status, potential or perceived HIV exposure or HIV transmission and on building and supporting PLHIV networks.

 

Sero’s HIV criminalization work includes raising public awareness through community education efforts and outreach to mobilize and advocate for reform in individual states, particularly those with HIV-specific statutes.  By engaging and empowering those most directly affected to advocate on our own behalf and share our compelling personal stories, we help build a growing grassroots movement to mobilize the advocacy necessary to end HIV criminalization and promote a human rights-based approach to end the HIV epidemic.

 

Sero’s Network Empowerment Project facilitates the creation and strengthening of PLHIV networks, including those that are oriented toward advocacy, education, treatment access, prevention, recreation or for social purposes.  Through networks, PLHIV are able to define our own agenda, select and hold accountable leadership of our own choosing, speak with collective voices and improve policy and healthcare outcomes.

 

Sero produces the biennial HIV is Not a Crime national training academy that provides training, expert assistance and support to mobilize intersectional advocacy to end the criminalization of disenfranchised communities and build grassroots PLHIV networks.

 

Sero is one of the founders of HIV Justice Worldwide, a global HIV criminalization resource and advocacy hub and through HJW and Latinx+ (a U.S.-based network of Latinx PLHIV), coordinates anti-criminalization efforts in Mexico and throughout Latin America and the Caribbean.  Sero’s work with incarcerated PLHIV produces Turn It Up! Staying Strong Inside, a magazine-format resource and wellness guide written, edited and illustrated mostly by people who are or have been incarcerated.

Staff


Sean Strub – Executive Director

The Sero Project grew out of the anti-criminalization advocacy work of Sean Strub, who serves as its executive director.  Strub is a writer and long-time activist who has been living with HIV for more than 30 years.  He founded POZ Magazine, served on the board of the Global Network of People Living with HIV (GNP+) and is the author of Body Counts: A Memoir of Politics, Sex, AIDS, and Survival (Scribner 2014).  He has been engaged in HIV-related stigma, discrimination, criminalization and empowerment issues since the earliest days of the epidemic.


Tami Haught – Managing Director

Tami Haught, Sero’s Managing Director, was diagnosed in 1993 and lived with HIV in silence for 6 years, before embracing advocacy and HIV education.  She is the President of PITCH (Positive Iowans Taking Charge) and as CHAIN (Community HIV/Hepatitis Advocates of Iowa Network) Community Organizer, from 2012 to 2014, managed the successful campaign to reform Iowa’s HIV criminalization statement.  Tami is also a steering committee member of the US PLHIV Caucus, a member of the Positive Women’s Network -USA and was inducted into the 2020 Leading Women’s Society in 2015.

Contact Info; tami.haught@seroproject.com


Cindy Stine – Development Director

Prior to working with the Sero Project, as Project Coordinator, Cindy worked for 14 years as Educational Outreach Coordinator, Empowerment and Child Advocate, and Legal and Medical Advocate for a crisis center working addressing domestic violence and sexual abuse. She sits on the board of the Upper Delaware GLBT Center, the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission Advisory Board and the Pike County, PA, Children and Youth Advisory Board. She also worked as a financial analyst for 23 years in New York City.

Contact Info: cindy.stine@seroproject.com


Kamaria Laffrey – Program Director

Kamaria Laffrey has been living with HIV since 2003 and currently serves as the Program Direct for the SERO Project. She also serves on various community organizations, including the Florida HIV Justice Coalition, the Healthy Start Coalition, the Florida Community Health Worker Coalition, Prevention Access Campaign Advisory Board, and is a member of the Positive Women’s Network – USA. Her advocacy work focuses on combating HIV criminalization, stigma, intimate partner violence and promoting treatment adherence and women and girl’s health empowerment. Kamaria uses her experience of living with HIV to redefine a legacy that was once anchored in shame and turn it into one that reflects the power of faith, hope and love through embracing healing, providing inspiration and living victoriously.

Contact Info: kamaria.laffrey@seroproject.com


Gonzalo Aburto – Latin America Initiative Director

Gonzalo Aburto is Sero’s Latin America Initiative Director and is a co-founder of Latinx+, a network of Latinx people living with HIV. He was the founding editor of POZ en Español and the executive producer of La Nueva Alternativa, a weekly radio program at WBAI (www.wbai.org). Gonzalo founded Los Mexicanos and Águila o Sol, the first publications directed to the Mexican community and of HomoVisiones, a Spanish-language magazine-format cable television program for the Latinx LGBT community. He was a member of Activistas Latinos Contra el SIDA the Latino group of ACTUP New York. Also executive editor  and co-founder of , a magazine on HIV / AIDS. He worked in the newspaper La Prensa, the oldest Spanish-language newspaper in the U.S.  Originally from Mexico,  Gonzalo has been based in New York since 1986.

Contact Info: gonzalo.aburto@seroproject.com


Kevin Lish- Finance Director

Kevin earnestly began his advocacy career nearly 20 years after his HIV diagnosis and a chance meeting with Sean Strub in Boise, Idaho. Kevin serves as SERO’s Financial Director and has the pleasure of supporting the rest of the staff with SERO’s daily financial operations. He oversees budgeting and monetary programs that allow SERO’s continued growth and commitment to the PLHIV community

Contact Info: kevin.lish@seroproject.com


Eric Pfleider- Communications Director

As Communications Director, Eric Pfleider creates, organizes and maintains Sero’s media to tell our stories to advance ongoing efforts for HIV policy reform.

Prior to working with Sero, Pfleider worked at an Indianapolis-based HIV services agency utilizing his talents in communications by creating stigma-reducing, inclusive content and developing engaging images to support these messages while reaching diverse communities that are most impacted by HIV. He also developed a strategic plan to create a marketing and advertising campaign to equitably generate awareness and promote action around HIV within Indianapolis’ BIPOC communities.

Contact Information: eric.pfleider@seroproject.com


Chauncey McGlathery- Sexual Justice Coordinator

Chauncey is a man on a mission to dismantle all barriers to wealth and wellness. Chauncey helps the community at large have intersectional conversations between groups that otherwise would not have the opportunity to collaborate.

As SERO Project’s Sexual Justice Coordinator, Chauncey will help develop and implement support within the HIV community for the Safe Sex Worker Study Act and create a closer alliance between PLHIV advocates and Sex Worker communities. Chauncey is a natural bridge-builder and looks  forward to exploring the epidemic intersections between race, gender, and identity politics.

Contact Information: Chauncey.mcglathery@seroproject.com


M. Alfredo Gonzalez, PhD-Latin America/Caribbean Coordinator

Alfredo González is a medical anthropologist and HIV activist. He has worked on HIV, homelessness and mental illness in New York City, Santo Domingo and Rio de Janeiro. Since 2009 he has been undertaking action research with Afro-Central Americans living with HIV.  Formerly Vice President of the Pan American Association of People Living with HIV, he has been an HIV activist since the late 1980s, when he was a member of ACT UP/NY’s Latino Caucus and ACT UP Americas Committee. From this platform he headed the international campaign supporting legal personality for the Comunidad Homosexual Argentina. He is currently working on HIV criminalisation issues with the Coalition of LGBTTIQ and Sex Worker Organizations with Work at the Organization of American States, and coordinating la Action Network for Justice for People Affected by HIV in Latin America and the Caribbean.


Deirdre Johnson- Sero Micro-Grant Program Assistant

Deirdre Johnson is the Co-founder of Ending Criminalization of HIV and Over-incarceration in Virginia (ECHO VA), a vast network of multiracial and gender inclusive Virginians led by people living with HIV and their allies, fighting for freedom from stigma and injustice for all. She also serves as the State Lead for Positive Women’s Network, USA and is a graduate of their 2019 Policy Fellowship, a member of SisterLove, Inc. 2020 Leading Women’s Society, a U=U Ambassador. Deirdre also hosts a nightly Facebook show as Deirdre Speaks on medical and medicine adherence along with other topics relevant to people living with HIV.

Deirdre will oversee reporting requirements, tracking deliverables and evaluating progress for our micro-grant programs. She will also assess technical assistance needs for grantees and coordinate trainings


The Sero Project's Board of Director's


Cecilia Chung – Board Chairperson

Cecilia Chung, Senior Strategist of Transgender Law Center, is the Co-Chair of the Amsterdam-based Global Network of People Living with HIV, a member of the Global Reference Group of Positive Women. She is an internationally recognized leader who advocates for HIV/AIDS awareness and access to care, LGBT equality, and human rights. Cecilia has been a vocal advocate for transgender women and people living with HIV.

In 2002, she joined the Board of the Asian Pacific Islander Wellness Center and currently consults with them on an innovative mobile HIV testing project for transgender youth. In 2004, as a founding producer of Trans March, she helped organize one of the world’s largest annual transgender events which has since been replicated in cities across the U.S. In 2005, she became the first Deputy Director of the Transgender Law Center and is widely credited with shaping the organization’s mission and programs. In 2013, Cecilia was appointed to the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS. In 2015, Cecilia launched Positively Trans, a national, constituents-led project that focus on policy advocacy and leadership development of transgender people living with HIV, especially transgender women of color.


Tami Haught – Board Treasurer


Sean Strub – Board President


Xavier Morales – Board Member

Xavier has been involved in the HIV epidemic since he helped his partner, Sean Strub, found POZ Magazine in 1994. Several years later, he and journalist Gonzalo Aburto founded POZ en Espanol, with Xavier serving as Associate Publisher. Xavier also served on the board of directors of Homovisiones, the first Spanish-language public access cable television showed geared to Spanish-speaking LGBT people and their families. Filmed in Manhattan, Homovisiones was broadcast in markets across the U.S. and Caribbean.


Kerry Thomas- Board Member

Kerry Thomas joined the Sero Board in 2013. Thomas is serving two consecutive 15-year sentence for having consensual sex, with condoms and an undetectable viral load, with a female partner and did not transmit HIV. Kerry is very active in educating, supporting and advocate within the walls of the Idaho correctional facility.


Monique D. Howell- Board Member

 

Monique D. Howell was born in Fort Sill Oklahoma. She is the daughter of Bishop Donald C Howell Sr and Cathedral Howell. After graduating  High School she too enlisted in the US Army. Monique now is a veteran, she wrote a book entitled “Living inside my skin of Silence” in 2010 which is a story of her personal testimonial  of many challenges she faced in her life including HIV Criminalization and how she overcame it. Her story has reached the nation allowing her voice to be heard and many doors to open in her life.

Monique is currently a motivational speaker and advocate for HIV/AIDS Awareness where she has spoken to numerous places around the world. She is also a social media influencer on many social media platforms where she speaks about HIV Awareness and other uplifting topics. She is currently the Executive producer in her new short film that called “A Silver Lining” which is another inspirational film of her life and currently filming another short film called “On the Other Side”. She hopes that her testimonial will help many broken people and hope it can encourage them to have the will power to keep pushing even in the midst of their storms.

Monique is the proud Mother of 5 children 3 boys and 2 daughter. Her favorite saying is “You must first love yourself before you can love anyone else.

 


The Sero Project’s Board of Directors

Sean Strub (Milford, PA) – President
Tami Haught (Nashua, IA) – Treasurer
Xavier Morales (Milford, PA)
Cecilia C. Chung (San Francisco, CA) Chairperson
Kerry Thomas (Boise, ID)