Jonathan Perry is one of several of the new breed of HIV/AIDS activists profiled in the next issue of The Advocate in an article entitled "More Than a White Man's Disease." The article notes that in the 25 years since first AIDS diagnosis, the complexion of the disease has dramatically changed and so have activists and their culture.
Jonathan was kicked out of Southeastern University, an Assemblies of God-affiliated institution, because he is gay. Later, Perry became HIV-positive while a student at Johnson C. Smith University, an historically black college in North Carolina. Since graduating, Johnathan Perry has become an in-demand speaker at HBCUs and Ivy League universities.
"In the beginning, I had no intention of ever-divulging my status publicly," says Perry, who notes that about half of all new HIV cases are among blacks. "I could have kept my mouth shut, but I was chosen in a lot of regards to be the mouthpiece for black college students."
The handsome and articulate HIV/AIDS spokesman, now living in Atlanta, has become quite the media darling. You'll recall, in 2004, Jonathan was featured on the now-infamous Oprah show that featured J.L. King and "life on the down low." Just last month, he was he was on the cover of HIV Plus. Congratulations and keep up the great work.