Rochester Victory Alliance Unites with Faith Leaders to Tackle Increase in HIV/AIDS in Rochester

Oct. 16, 2011

The Rochester Victory Alliance, community health care organizations and Greater Rochester faith leaders will meet Tuesday, Oct. 18, to exchange information and learn from one another how they can work together to fight the spread of HIV/AIDS in the Rochester area.

Two events have been planned. The first is a free breakfast gathering of the Rochester Faith Collaborative, a group of faith leaders that has been meeting for almost two years to address how they can educate and inform their congregations and ministries to increase awareness about spiking HIV/AIDS cases in the African American community. The breakfast will take place from 8:30 to 11 a.m. at the Quality Inn, 1273 Chili Ave., Rochester.

Later that evening, the entire community is invited to “An Ecumenical Evening of Worship” at 7 p.m. at the Interfaith Chapel on Wilson Boulevard on the University of Rochester campus.

While new national HIV/AIDS cases have remained stable, urban areas have seen an increase in cases among young African American men who have sex with men. Of that group, one in five is not aware they are HIV positive, which makes them more likely to infect others. Over the past two years, the Victory Alliance has worked with local faith leaders to arrest this increase.

Participating in the breakfast gathering and the Ecumenical Evening of Worship are AIDS Care, the Metropolitan Interdenominational Church of Technical Assistance Network and the following faith leaders:


Emily Anderson - Community Temple Holiness Church

J. Peter Dillard – Victory Fellowship Center

Mary Robinson - Miracle Outreach Church of God

Ernest Salters – All God’s Children

Mary Clarke

Wanda Wilson – Elim Christian Fellowship


James Cherry, Jr. – Antioch Metropolitan Baptist Church

Todd Goewey – Open Arms Metropolitan Community Church

Weldon Thomas – New Bethel Christian Methodist Episcopal Church

Stephen Williams – Goodwill Baptist Church

Leon Blake - New Life Ministries

Dean Franklin – First Genesis Baptist Church

Elaine Hawkins – Aenon Baptist Church

E.C. Williams - Memorial African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church

Roosevelt Dixon – Grace Unity Fellowship Church

Deloris Simpson - First Genesis Baptist Church


Michael Tillman – Emmanuel Temple Church

David Singleton – Ark of Jesus Ministries

Herman Dailey – Outreach Community Center

Troy Bronner – Elim Christian Fellowship

James Wright


Willie Williams – Church of God by Faith

and Mr. Phillip Johnson – Antioch Metropolitan Baptist Church

The Rochester Victory Alliance, the University of Rochester Medical Center’s HIV vaccine trials unit, has worked since 1988 to find a vaccine for HIV/AIDS. While no longer a death sentence for people in developing countries who have ready access to health care, HIV/AIDS is on the increase in urban areas. 

URMC was one of the first sites in the nation to conduct HIV vaccine research studies. Since then, nearly 1,300 people from the Rochester area have participated in more than 50 vaccine research trials. The Rochester Victory Alliance is a member of the international HIV Vaccine Trials Network, which is supported by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases of the U.S. National Institutes of Health. The Rochester Victory Alliance currently works with HIV vaccine research teams in Sao Paulo, Brazil, and South Africa.

For more information about Victory Alliance services or to volunteer in a trial, contact the Rochester Victory Alliance at the University of Rochester Medical Center, 601 Elmwood Ave, Rochester, 14642, (585) 756-2329 (756-2DAY) or their Buffalo office at (855) 816-5500. Visit the Rochester Victory Alliance on Facebook at Twitter at

For more information about the Oct. 18 events, contact (585) 275-2329.