Agatha Nyambi (MPH) - Research Project Coordinator
Agatha Nyambi (MPH) is the research project coordinator for the ACB+MSM Blood Donation Project (#GotBlood2Give). Agatha’s interests and experiences are in the area of gender and health equity. Recently, she worked with the Gender, Health and Justice Research Unit at the University of Cape Town on a community-based research project with a focus on the mental and physical wellbeing of sexual and gender minorities in 12 African countries. She has also worked with the Public Health Agency of Canada and the World Health Organization.
Edward Ou Jin Lee, (PhD) - Co-Investigator
Edward Ou Jin Lee, PhD is assistant professor at the School of Social Work at the Université de Montréal. Ed’s research and practice interests include: critical, anti-oppressive and decolonizing social work, participatory and qualitative research methodologies as well as policy advocacy, with a focus on queer and trans racialized and migrant communities. Ed is a regular member of the CIHR funded REACH Centre 2.0, which aims to support community-based HIV research practices. For this project, Ed will be involved in advancing this project in the Montreal and Ottawa sites.
Zack Marshall, PhD(c) - Co-Investigator
Zack Marshall, PhD(c) is Assistant Professor in the School of Social Work at McGill University. Marshall is contributing his experience related to trans health, LGBT2Q young people, qualitative interviewing and data analysis, and HIV POCT to this project. Prof. Marshall is trans-identified and is Principal Investigator with the REACH Trans Priorities Project. He co-founded the Gay/Bi/Queer Trans Men’s Working Group and co-developed the first edition of Primed: The Back Pocket Guide for Trans Men and the Men Who Dig Them. Marshall previously worked as an HIV Counsellor at Hassle Free Clinic and was co-chair of the National HIV POCT Working Group in 2014. A former resident of Atlantic Canada, Marshall is serving as co-investigator for the Halifax site with particular attention to community engagement, staff recruitment and coordination, and data collection.
Lawrence Mbuagbaw, (MD, MPH, PhD) - Co-Investigator
Lawrence Mbuagbaw, MD, MPH, PhD is a Research Methods Consultant and Public Health Physician. He works as an assistant professor at McMaster University and research methods consultant at the Biostatistics Unit of St Joseph’s Health Care Hamilton. Mbuagbaw is the principal investigator of numerous research projects covering a wide variety of research designs including randomized trials, mixed methods studies and qualitative studies. He has authored over 100 peer-reviewed publications and has over 10 years of experience with infectious disease research. He is on the research committee of African and Caribbean Council on HIV/AIDS in Ontario (ACCHO). Dr. Mbuagbaw is contributing to the respondent driven sampling approaches and analyses of weighted data. He is also supporting the development and piloting of data collections instruments, and leading data quality assurance.
LaRon E. Nelson, (RN, FNP, PhD) - Co-Investigator
LaRon E. Nelson, RN, FNP, PhD is Scientist and OHTN Research Chair in HIV Program Science with African, Caribbean and Black Communities in the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute at St. Michael’s Hospital. Prof. Nelson is an Assistant Professor and Dean’s Endowed Fellow in Health Disparities at the University of Rochester School of Nursing, as well as Associate Director of International Research at the University of Rochester Center for AIDS Research. Nelson has over 15 years of clinical public health practice experience and 13 years involved in HIV research. His overall program of research focuses on HIV prevention and treatment outcomes for socially marginalized groups within African (i.e., Ghana) and African Diaspora (e.g., Canada and United States) communities. In his role as the Ontario HIV/AIDS Treatment Network Chair in HIV Program Science in ACB Communities, Dr. Nelson is providing senior scientific guidance in the development, implementation and evaluation of multi-site research studies.
Francesca Ekwuyasi is a writer and researcher from Lagos, Nigeria. She received her BA in Political Science, French Language, and Women's Studies from the State University of New York in Albany; and her MA in International Development Studies from Saint Mary's University Halifax. For her thesis, she researched Labour Migration and Human Trafficking in the Gulf Cooperation Council. She has gained invaluable experience working with and supporting people through internships and volunteer opportunities with organisations such as the U.S Committee for Refugees and Immigrants, and the Halifax Refugee Clinic. Francesca explores themes of Queerness, displacement, diaspora, faith, and consumption through her fiction and creative non- fiction writing practice. You may find her work in Winter Tangerine Review, Brittle Paper, Jalada/Transition Magazine Issue 05/123, Vol. 1 Brooklyn, and Guts Magazine. She is the creator of 'Black In Halifax', a documentary interview series exploring the lives of black people living in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and is currently at work on a film project, which navigates the intersections of queerness and faith.
Karla Williams began working as an Administrative Assistant in the year 2000 gaining experience in the following industries, IT, Healthcare, Engineering, Non-profit and Government. As a former member of the Nova Scotia Department of Health and Wellness Diversity Committee, Karla has a long-standing interest in increasing public understanding of the systemic barriers faced by marginalized populations in Canada. Having grown up as a Black woman in Nova Scotia, Karla is familiar with the systemic barriers faced by African Nova Scotians. Having deep connections to the LGBTI community has also given her insight into the issues faced by members of the community. Karla currently works for the Health Association of African Canadians whose goal it is to to promote the health of Black Nova Scotians and their families through community mobilization, development and research.
Taib Boyce was born and raised in Ottawa. He currently works as the MSM Ethno-Cultural Resource Coordinator at the AIDS Committee of Ottawa (ACO). In this role he is responsible for the development and coordination of resources specifically aimed at gay/bi/MSM/Trans men from ethno cultural communities in Ottawa. Taib is the co-founder and co-facilitator of Keeping it 100 (K1) – a social discussion group hosted by MAX Ottawa for Queer/Trans African, Caribbean, and Black (ACB) men. He also facilitates a similar discussion group for ACB Queer/Trans men who are living with HIV at ACO. Regarding Taib’s academic background, he holds a BA Honours degree from Carleton University majoring in Political Science specializing in International Relations and Minoring in Law. He is also currently pursuing a Graduate Diploma in Public Policy and Program Evaluation from Carleton University’s School of Public Policy and Administration.
Laurent Maurice Lafontant
Laurent Maurice Lafontant was born in Haiti and has lived in Quebec since 2001. He graduated with a degree in Fine Arts from Concordia University after achieving a double major in Film Studies and French Literature. Laurent has been involved in the LGBTQ+ community since 2008. He is a volunteer for Gris-Montreal an organization that raises awareness against homophobia. Laurent has been a volunteer and an employee at African Rainbow, an organization that worked with Black LGBTQ+ people in Quebec. There he was in charge of a youth committee. He directed two short documentaries Be Yourself (2012) and Beyond Images (2014). Both films talked about Black LGBTQ+ people in Montreal. In 2013, he was named assistant director at African Rainbow and became interim executive director from 2016 to 2017. He is now president of the Massimadi Foundation, the organization behind Massimadi: an Afro LGBTQ+ Film & Art Festival. Laurent is also a self-published writer.
Vincent Mousseau (they/them) is a Black, queer and trans community organizer, educator, and activist based in Tio’tià:ke (Montréal). In addition to studying social work at McGill University, they are the managing editor of Art/iculation — an annual interdisciplinary print and digital magazine that aims to challenge mainstream notions of ‘culture,’ by spotlighting un(der)represented topics of cultural significance. In addition to their involvement with the #GotBlood2Give project, their other areas of academic interest surround the creation of space for LGBTQ2+ youth of colour, as well as community approaches to supporting marginalized sex workers. More information about their work can be found at www.vincentmousseau.net
.Nikoli Attai is a PhD candidate at the Women and Gender Studies Institute, University of Toronto. He is currently preparing to defend his dissertation titled “Let’s Liberate the Bullers: Queer Activism and Community-making in the Anglophone Caribbean, which analyses data collected in Barbados, Guyana, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, Toronto and Amsterdam. Nikoli also completed a Master of Philosophy in Cultural Studies at the University of the West Indies, St Augustine in 2013, where he submitted his thesis titled: Trans-T&T: An Investigation of Transgender Identities and Communities in Trinidad and Tobago. He has worked closely with queer activists across the Anglophone Caribbean and with Black queer youth in Toronto. His research and community interests include: Trans communities in Trinidad and Tobago and the Anglophone Caribbean; Politics of belonging for queer people in the Caribbean and Caribbean diaspora; Gay carnival tourism in Trinidad and Tobago; Human Rights activism and Drag Pageantry.
Travoy "TravoyintheFlesh" Deer
Travoy "TravoyintheFlesh" Deer is a multi-disciplinary artist, activist and community worker/organizer. He attends York University where he currently majors in Sociology. House of Monroe, The Legendary Kiki House of Old Navy, Suite Life: Arts For Youth, Street Art: Youth Presenting Arts Festival (StArtYPA) in Scarborough, ON are just some of the initiatives that TravoyintheFlesh works with. TravoyintheFlesh has been the face and voice all over the city and beyond for the young black LGBTQ community members and continues to work with community organizations (LGBT and Allies) to ensure these voices are not only being heard but respected. TravoyinTheFlesh also sits on the Blackness Yes Committee, organizers of Blockorama, the longest running black space during Toronto Pride. Host of Blockorama 2013 and the first ever Black Queer Youth (BQY) Pride Stage 2013, you will find hosting a variety of events, co-hosting the new podcast "Sip on This", or flooding all social media with this thoughts. Travoy is in your face, in demand, and #InTheFlesh
Adewale Kunle Odebode
Caroline Ploem, Atlantic Interdisciplinary Research Network
Halifax Sexual Health Centre (HSHC)
AIDS Committee of Ottawa (ACO)
Black Coalition for AIDS Prevention