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Louis Escobar joins AIDS Resource Center Ohio Board

In the 1980s, the disease that would become the global pandemic known as AIDS was just taking its first lives in the Toledo region. And Louis Escobar was among the first in the community to face the confusion, stigma, and even hysteria that surrounded that time that now seems so long ago.

After two decades of HIV/AIDS-related service and leadership, life-long Toledo resident and former Toledo City Council President, Escobar was among three individuals recently elected to the governing board of AIDS Resource Center Ohio, whose services to northwest Ohio are provided through its Toledo office.  

He joins two additional persons— Scott Herr of the Source of Northwest Ohio and Debbie Dryer-McClure of the Toledo-Lucas County Health Department—to represent the region on the agency’s 18-member board.

“We are delighted to have Louis join us on behalf of the needs and our work in the Toledo region,” states board chair Sam Rinehart, CFP,
CLU.  “His many years of HIV/AIDS-related involvement and his other community and political leadership will be tremendous assets to us.”  

Included in Escobar’s history of HIV-related work was time spent as an HIV/AIDS educator at the American Red Cross of Greater Toledo and the administrator and coordinator of The Toledo Wellness Group, a self-help group for Persons Living with HIV/AIDS. In these capacities he worked closely with The NOVA (No One’s Victory Alone) Project. NOVA later became David’s House Compassion, whose programs were integrated into those of AIDS Resource Center Ohio in 2006.  

“I am enthusiastic about this new opportunity to serve the Toledo region’s people through the important work of ARC Ohio,” says Escobar.  After observing dwindling support for HIV/AIDS programs in the region—a problem common throughout Ohio and the U.S. —Escobar is especially interested in again raising awareness about this most challenging issue and the need for continuing funding. 

“There are more people now than ever living with HIV/AIDS in our community, and for longer periods of time—and yet public and private support is actually decreasing.  I want to help change this and diminish the spread of HIV/AIDS through the work of ARC Ohio.”

For his contributions in the fight against HIV/AIDS, in 2005 Escobar was one of AIDS Resource Center Ohio’s “20 Years/20 Faces” honorees.   “Louis is the kind of person we need more of,” said ARC Ohio executive director Bill Hardy.  “He is passionate. He cares. He is determined to make a difference, and willing to roll up his sleeves and get involved in making that happen.”  






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