Cornelius Baker

Cornelius Baker

Board Member

Cornelius Baker has been a committed civil rights and HIV/AIDS advocate at the local and national level for over two decades.  He is Chief Policy Advisor for the U.S. Department of State, Office of the U.S. Global AIDS Coordinator and Health Diplomacy. He formerly served as technical advisor at FHI 360, senior advisor at the National Black Gay Men’s Advocacy Coalition, and the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS.

From January 2000 through December 2004, Mr. Baker served as the Executive Director of Whitman-Walker Clinic in the Washington, D.C.  From 1996 to 2000, Mr. Baker served as the Executive Director of the National Association of People with AIDS (NAPWA).  He joined NAPWA in 1992 as the organization’s first director of public policy.  His experience in government includes appointments at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services under President George H.W. Bush, and as an aide to Washington, D.C. City Councilmember Carol Schwartz.

He currently serves on the boards of the Black AIDS Institute, Public Responsibility in Medicine and Research, Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS, Us Helping Us/People Into Living, and the executive committee of the Forum for Collaborative Research on AIDS.  He served as the chairman of the Campaign for all DC Families which conducted voter research and public education in support of marriage equality in the District of Columbia.

Mr. Baker is the recipient of numerous honors and awards, including: the National Lesbian and Gay Health Association’s Diego Lopez Award for leadership in HIV/AIDS advocacy (1998), LGBT Pride of Washington, DC Community Hero (2005), and the Rainbow History Project Community Pioneer (2007). He was honored to deliver the 2000 Bon Foster Memorial Civil Rights Lecture for Lambda Legal.

Mr. Baker is a native of central New York and received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Eisenhower College/Rochester Institute of Technology.