Preben Babko Sloth is 49 years old and has been living with HIV for 25 years. He works as a social worker with people who are physically and mentally challenged and part time studies comparative religion at Copenhagen University. Preben joined Markens Liljer MCC, Copenhagen, Denmark, in 1989 and now is a member of Basisgemeinde MCC, Hamburg, Germany. He has worked as staff and volunteer in Danish and international HIV NGO’s and FBO’s since 1989, among others as a consultant on HIV issues to the Lutheran Church of Sweden. Preben has made exchange visits to various HIV projects in Southern Africa. Though many of us who have access to ARV’s are living physically well, HIV is still a challenge to the individual and to us as church – both spiritually and diaconal. Treatment has made HIV more invisible in our communities but for those who get a positive test result today it is still an existential shock with loneliness and despair as a result, and the silence, ignorance and fear surrounding HIV and those of us, who are living with HIV, must constantly be addressed. MCC has a lot to offer both individuals and our communities as well as ecumenical settings. HIV is also an opportunity for change and hope.
Dr. David Williams, M.D., M.P.H., was born in Kingston, Jamaica where he completed his primary and secondary school education. Upon immigrating to the United States he completed his undergraduate studies in biology/biochemical engineering. Since graduating from medical school he has worked as an emergency/trauma medicine physician and surgeon in the US and several overseas locales as well as a project/program director in employee health and safety for a number of major telecom equipment manufacturers and providers. Dr. Williams has more than 20 years of medical and engineering experience. He holds degrees in engineering, medicine and public health; and has extensive experience in managing complex development and deployment projects for large health care companies/organizations, and multinational telecom providers. A summary of Dr. Williams’ clinical qualifications is as follows: Practiced clinical emergency medicine and public health for over twenty years. Post-training clinical experience in a very diverse range of practice settings, (in the public, community and private sectors), including a number of foreign countries where he gained an understanding of national/local public health and emergency medical systems compared with those of the U.S.A. Studied, at the master’s level, qualitative and quantitative aspects of the U.S. healthcare system policy and politics, including epidemiology of, and comparison with international perspectives on, emergency medicine, public health and HIV/AIDS. Consulted for several years in administrative leadership positions within critical care, emergency medicine and HIV/AIDS. Trained medical and nursing students, nurses, residents, fellows, and allied health professionals in on-the-job, basic and advanced life support clinical skills. Dr. Williams resides and practices in the New York/New Jersey metropolitan area, and travels extensively internationally lecturing on varied subjects in the fields of emergency medicine/trauma surgery and public health. He currently serves on the boards of the MCC Christ the Liberator and the New Jersey AIDS Partnership.