Alfred Montoya

My name is Alfred Montoya. I am a native of San Antonio. I grew up, and currently live, on the near West Side, a part of the city in which I have a lot of pride.

I am very excited to be part of this innovative project. This project spoke deeply to me, as someone who loves, and is deeply committed to this city, its history and its people, who recognizes the ongoing importance of addressing stigma and other negative social, political and economic factors related to HIV, and who is eager to contribute to addressing these. I hope that every participant in this project, storytellers and listeners/learners, has a satisfying and meaningful experience, and comes away from it with a sense of peace and accomplishment at having contributed to the dismantling of some of the barriers that keep us from flourishing as individuals and a community.

I received my PhD from the University of California, Berkeley. I am a medical anthropologist at Trinity University. I teach and conduct research on health-related topics; structural/systemic forms of inequality, environmental/ecological effects on human health, the historical, social, political, and economic factors that structure the global burden of disease, and the social determinants of health. I am the director of the International Studies program at Trinity and oversee our concentration in Global Health. For the past two decades my primary focus has been on HIV prevention and control. I have conducted fieldwork and published on a variety of topics related to HIV, primarily in Southeast Asia.

I have served on the Ryan White planning council, and the board of the San Antonio AIDS Foundation. I have conducted research and advocacy around a variety of interlinked topics of local concern; debt and payday loans, utility rates, housing, health access, food and nutrition, climate equity, and others.

barbara taylorBarbara Taylor

I have been an HIV care provider for almost two decades and have gone from prescribing mountains of pills for people to one pill once a day and U=U. It’s been a joyful journey with some tears along the way. During that same time, I’ve become a mom, moved back to Texas, read hundreds of novels, and learned to lift heavy things. I work in San Antonio and do research to try to improve HIV care access and treatment for marginalized populations here and in the Dominican Republic. I helped convene the first Storytelling project for the End Stigma End HIV Alliance, Raising Our Voices, and serve as an advisor on this project. I believe that stories are the most powerful tool we have to combat stigma. I also just love hearing people’s stories because people are amazing and inspiring and I learn a lot.


Brittany Hansen (she/her)

I am a storyteller in training, studying to become a physician and now learning how to amplify the voices of others through oral histories. I attend medical school at UT Health San Antonio and I’m also pursuing a master’s degree in public health from UT Health Houston. I am drawn to this project because I believe in the power of making space for others to be heard, something that medicine has far too often failed to do. In the future I would like to work with medically underserved patients and their communities to bring about positive change and empowerment. My house is full of both people and pets, as I currently live with two roommates, their two dogs, and my cat Oliver. I love baking, reading, yoga, and being outside.



Kimberly Nguyen (she/her)

Hello! I’m Kimberly Nguyen, and I am a  medical student at UTHealth San Antonio. I am a storyteller within the HIV storytelling Project. I got connected to this project because I value the power of oral history, as it preserves the voices of a community. I love how this project highlights the intersection between an individual’s experience with a disease and them defining their own identity and experiences. beyond their diagnosis. Overall I am grateful and honored to be able to listen to someone’s story.

More about myself, when I am not studying, I like to spend my time camping, hanging out with my cat Sammie the Sandwich, and looking for the best dim sum restaurants in San Antonio.



Sonia Razaqyar (she/her)

I am training to become a listener to amplify voices often diminished in the medical setting. I am a MD/PhD candidate at UT Health SA and currently in my fourth year of training. Besides academia I am busy raising my eight-month-old son and serving and advocating for different refugee populations in San Antonio. I hope together we can make an impact and de-stigmatize HIV in our communities. Leaving you with my favorite quote: “My humanity is bound up in yours, for we can only be human together.” – Desmond Tutu




Abby Ottaway (she/her)

I’m a senior sociology and Spanish undergraduate student at Trinity University. In my free time, I enjoy reading, writing, hiking, and doing theatre (yes, I’m a theatre kid)! Right now I am doing research at my university on family and housing of LGBTQ+ youth and working with a coalition of nonprofits aimed at supporting women of color called Todas Las Mujeres. I am thrilled to be a part of the HIV Out Loud project as I am very interested in public health issues and have familial experience with HIV. 



Gregory Casillas (he/him)

Assistant Director at Thrive Youth Center in San Antonio, TX.

Growing up the youngest of seven in a first generation Mexican-American family, there were lots of stereotypes, biases and prejudices. And that’s from within my own family. Being the lightest skinned of all my siblings brought privilege, guilt and a burden to live up to all of the expectations set for me. Now add being the second gay son into the mix (although not out yet), finding out my eldest brother has been diagnosed with AIDS and I’m getting ready to graduate highschool. Fast forward through addiction, rehab, relapse, rehab and being diagnosed with HIV, 3 months before my brother passes. Then life changed when I moved to Costa Rica to “grow up”. After 17 years living outside of the U.S., I returned to San Antonio to join the battle against HIV, stigma associated with HIV and dive into the world of supporting LGBTQIA+ youth experiencing homelessness. Now at 56, I look back and realize, I still have a lot of stuff left to do on this earth and sharing my story is one of them.

I am active in the community serving as a resource to San Antonio and the surrounding area. I was the co-chair for the Ryan White Planning Council and the End Stigma End HIV Alliance. I actively serve on several community based initiatives and University based student projects.

I am a yoga teacher, a Quaker, sports enthusiast, like to cook and love serving my community. My husband John and I are “Dads” to two dogs, 10 cats and an opossum named Mabel.

I am very honored to participate in this amazing project and encourage others to share, listen and remember it takes one voice, let it be yours.

Silence = Permission