Q & A With Jack Mackenroth for HelloGorgeous Magazine: “Jack of All Trades”

THIS IS THE ENGLISH TRANSLATION: Find the original article in Dutch in Hello Gorgeous HERE. Jack Mackenroth (46) is nationally known in the US for taking part in the popular reality show Project Runway in 2007. In it he was very open about his HIV status. Since then he speaks openly about reducing HIV stigma . Hello Gorgeous spoke with him recently. HG: How would you describe yourself? Where are you from? Where do you live now? What do you do for a… Read more


It breaks my heart that the worst of HIV stigma comes from my own community: gay men. Here are salvos from a new battle: Calling a young, HIV-negative gay man a “Truvada whore” simply for choosing a prevention option with a higher efficacy rate than condoms. Becoming indignant when someone says AIDS is still a gay problem. Turning to the police when you find out the guy that just jilted you is HIV-positive. Putting “I’m clean, ub2” in your online… Read more

What my Mother Taught Me About HIV and Didn’t Even Know

It’s interesting the ways in which one’s whole world can flip on its head because of three letters—HIV– almost as interesting as the way we can let those three letters hold us hostage from time to time. Before my seroconversion at the age of 24, the virus was admittedly relegated, regretfully, to the public sphere of whispered gossip between overpriced cocktails with friends, conjecturing about rumors we’d heard about those who bore the stigma of the dreaded plus sign. The… Read more

Jack on the Instinct Soapbox: HIV stigma needs to end now

VolttageBuzz co-founder Jack Mackenroth was asked to jump on the Instinct magazine Soapbox for their Health and Wellness Issue.

…HIV stigma needs to end now. The quiet judgment within the gay community is often passive but sly and cunning. For a community that has grown up feeling “less than,” we certainly have no trouble segregating within our ranks. So stigma needs to end. Yesterday.

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Interview with Olympian Ji Wallace and Shawn Baldwin

Olympic silver medalist Ji Wallace speaks to David Duran of VolttageBuzz. Wallace also took home gold at the 1996 Trampoline World Championships and set a record for the double mini trampoline in 1998. It was as guest of honor at the London Pride House during the 2012 Summer Olympics, while watching a television interview with Louganis, that he was inspired to tell the world that he, too, was HIV-positive.

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POZ Magazine: The Sound of Stigma by Mark S. King

I LOVE Mark S. King and I respect his unedited, unabashed way in which he addresses all topics HIV. His recent piece on HIV stigma is no exception. Why do we feel the need to judge anything “other”? Some of my favorite quotes from the article are below.  Stigma lets us take comfort in seeing things in others about which, we believe, they must be ashamed. It is a lazy way to feel better about ourselves—and therefore a popular human activity—and gay… Read more

HIVplus Magazine: “Jack of All Trades”

I am featured in an article along with legends Greg Louganis, Peter Staley, Rudy Galindo and Andrew Sullivan. Such an honor! Interview by Diane Anderson-Minshall for HIV Plus Magazine You wear a lot of hats. Describe yourself. HAHA!! Yes I do. Hopefully very stylish hats. You described me pretty well. I would move “activist” to the front of the line because that’s what I am most proud of and activism and HIV awareness is what I’m really focusing my energy… Read more

What Stigma Means To Me

Like an onion, there are many layers to HIV-related stigma. Stigma can be internalized to oneself, or it can manifest outward. Like an interstate, stigma can also move in both directions at the same time. Consequences to stigma can impact a person, a relationship, or a community. Like an elevator, stigma can move up and down the age scale. The impact it has can have physical, emotional, and social effects to both HIV- and HIV+ men. It seems to me there is a growing and widening divide between HIV+ and HIV- men. Like an infection, it seems to be only getting worse.

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