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Stephen Lewis


Stephen LewisMr. Stephen Lewis is the co-founder and co-director of AIDS-Free World, an international advocacy organization that exposes injustice, abuse and inequality, the social ills that underpin and continue to sustain HIV.

Stephen Lewis’ work with the United Nations spanned more than two decades. He was the UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for HIV/AIDS in Africa from June 2001 until the end of 2006.

From 1995 to 1999, Mr. Lewis was Deputy Executive Director of UNICEF at the organization’s global headquarters in New York. From 1984 through 1988, he was Canada's Ambassador to the United Nations.

In addition to his work with AIDS-Free World, Mr. Lewis is a Professor of Distinction at Ryerson University in Toronto and a Professor of Practice in Global Governance at the Institute for the Study of International Development at McGill University.

Mr. Lewis is the co-founder and board chair of the Stephen Lewis Foundation in Canada, and he is a Senior Fellow of the Enough Project. He is a past member of the Board of Directors of the Clinton Health Access Initiative, and Emeritus Board Member of the International AIDS Vaccine Initiative. He served as a Commissioner on the Global Commission on HIV & the Law and in 2015 was appointed to the Lancet Commission on Drug Policy and Health.

Stephen Lewis is a Companion of the Order of Canada, Canada’s highest honor for lifetime achievement. In 2005, Mr. Lewis was named by TIME magazine as one of the ‘One hundred most influential people in the world’ (he was cited in the category which included The Dalai Lama, Bill Gates, Oprah Winfrey, and Nelson Mandela). In 2007, King Letsie III, monarch of the Kingdom of Lesotho (a small mountainous country in Southern Africa) invested Mr. Lewis as Knight Commander of the Most Dignified Order of Moshoeshoe. The order is named for the founder of Lesotho; the knighthood is the country’s highest honor.

Mr. Lewis is the author of the best-selling book, Race Against Time.  He holds 40 honorary doctorates: 38 from Canadian universities, plus degrees from Dartmouth College and Johns Hopkins University in the United States.

Contact Stephen: info@aidsfreeworld.org