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Fighting Issues on a Global Level: An Interview with a Leader
Eileen Campbell is the Senior Director of Advocacy and Mobilization at IJM.
In my first job, I had the opportunity to work as an activist on global AIDS treatment access. I worked with a lot of AIDS doctors who were brave, inspiring and figuring out how to provide access to quality healthcare to those who would die without it. Few did this with the quiet humility of Dr. Eric Goosby.
Dr. Goosby was one of those infectious disease doctors in San Francisco in the early ’80s who began treating AIDS before we had a name for it. He went on to administer the Ryan White Care Act—the first federal program that provided services to people living with HIV/AIDS in hard-hit epicenters around the country, and then went to serve as the U.S. Global AIDS Coordinator under President Obama, overseeing the U.S.-funded program that is responsible for getting 11.5 million people on life-saving antiretroviral medications.
When the history books are written about how the AIDS pandemic was brought to its knees, Dr. Goosby will be a key player. I’d heard Dr. Goosby speak as a medical expert many times, but had never had the opportunity to hear him share about his own story—what shaped him and continues to inspire him as someone who is deeply committed to protecting the rights and dignity of some of the most vulnerable people on the planet. That's why I was thrilled at his acceptance of my invitation to interview him.
This interview was inspired by IJM’s podcast, The New Activist , which is making possible so many amazing conversations with creative, courageous, committed world-changers. Our hope is that in turn, these conversations about leaders in change—like Dr. Eric Goosby—will inspire the rest of us by showing us what is possible when smart brave people come together to overcome big challenges.