Eight leaders bring passion and experiences to AFC’s Board and Associate Board

August 26, 2019

At the helm of the AIDS Foundation of Chicago (AFC) is its 31-person Board of Directors. Each member contributes to the vision and leadership of AFC, and provides a unique perspective based on their areas of expertise and lived experiences. AFC also benefits from support, fundraising and guidance from its Associate Board, comprised of 21 young professionals and emerging leaders. This year, AFC welcomes four new members to both the Board of Directors and the Associate Board. Learn more about them below!

If you have any questions for the AFC Board of Directors or Associate Board or want to learn about how you can join, please reach out to AFC President/CEO John Peller

Board of Directors

  Yusef García has actively contributed to a more vibrant Chicago region for more than 10 years. As Vice President of Development & Communications at Forefront, Yusef and his team activate stakeholders and deepen relationships through cultivating collaborative partnerships. Yusef previously led institutional fundraising and engagement strategies for organizations focused on public media, arts and culture and human services. Yusef serves as chair of the Chicago History Museum’s OUT at CHM initiative and is a committee member for the Association of Fundraising Professionals’ Faces of Philanthropy luncheon.
  Janet Lin currently works as a physician in the emergency department and cares for a variety of patients with different socio-economic backgrounds and who are disproportionately vulnerable to HIV. She is a Professor of Emergency Medicine at the University of Illinois Chicago’s College of Medicine and an Affiliate Professor of Community Health Sciences in the School of Public Health. Janet leads Project HEAL, which stands for HIV/HCV testing, Education, Awareness, and Linkage to care, and conducts research to improve access to and delivery of health care globally. She is a board member and the immediate past president of the Illinois College of Emergency Physicians and a board member of Med Global.
  Esteban Rodriguez has over 13 years in nonprofit experience, particularly in criminal justice, youth, education, safety, housing and health. Today, he is the Director of Programs and Services at Northwest Side Housing Center. Previously, he led a sexual health program that lowered teen pregnancy rates, provided HIV testing and counseling, and served a predominantly Latinx community.
  JP Valadez is a director at Kivvit, a nationally recognized public affairs and communications firm based in Chicago. At Kivvit, JP manages a wide range of campaigns that include political, government and policy issues at the city and state levels. Previously, JP served as a regional coordinator for the Speaker of the House for the Illinois House of Representatives. He has worked closely with legislators and policy experts who were advocating for legislation that was part of the AFC's policy agenda in Springfield.

Associate Board

  Charlie Dao is an IT Service Transition Analyst at Astellas Pharma U.S., Inc. where he manages the operational readiness of all U.S.-based IT projects. Previously, Charlie was selected for the New Sector Alliance nonprofit management and administration Fellowship program. As a Fellow, he was assigned to the City of Chicago's Office of Veterans' Affairs to assist in building strategic partnerships with nonprofits and corporations to improve health care, employment rates and housing resource navigation for socially and economically disadvantaged military veterans.
  Matthew Estacio, RN, BSN, is a clinical case manager at Lurie Children’s Hospital on the hematology/oncology unit. As a bedside nurse, he gained experience in taking care of newborn neonates, all the way to elderly adult patients in the intensive-care setting. Matthew also previously worked with people living with HIV and AIDS both as a nursing student and after graduation, which provided him a look at how this population was often mistreated by other health care professionals and insurance companies. These experiences inspired him to get more involved in the community and ultimately join AFC’s Associate Board.
  Kandis Draw works at the Daisie Foundation, and also is a classical pianist. She is an active member of the National Ovarian Cancer Coalition Illinois Chapter as well as Gilda's Club Chicago Associate Board. Most recently, Kandis was featured in Cancer Wellness Magazine and was appointed to the Advisory Board for the soon-to-be-released online magazine Curvicality, which focuses on lifestyle, fashion, fitness and inspiration, all while promoting positive body imagery for plus-size women. She brings her passion for Philanthropy, and Advocacy to the Associate Board in hopes of bringing about change to the HIV/AIDS laws in Illinois.
  Hannah Kopach is the Marketing + Design Coordinator at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices KoenigRubloff Realty Group’s Lincoln Park office. She previously served on the Trevor Project’s Youth Advisory Council and has extensive experience in nonprofit marketing and design. She brings her passion for philanthropy to the AIDS Foundation of Chicago Associate Board and looks forward to advocating for progress across the HIV/AIDS community.


Categorized under AFC news.

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