Todd Fuqua, 52, is a queer artist & photographer based in Indianapolis, Indiana. Todd worked in corporate for 20+ years. When Todd lost their job in 2010, the period that followed helped shape what Todd would accomplish to date. They have a passion for asset-based community development, social justice & self-advocacy. Areas of focus include LGBTQ+ related issues, mental health, addiction & recovery, HIV/AIDS, and ex-offenders.
In 2012, Todd found themselves in the hospital with a form of sepsis, resulting from untreated and misdiagnosed stage-2 syphilis. It was in that hospital bed that they also received a diagnosis that they were HIV positive. On the guidance of their infectious disease doctor, Todd started on antiretroviral treatment right away and within 9 months, their viral load was undetectable.
Todd had been largely silent about their HIV status until 2019, when their story was featured in a local newspaper article about The Damien Center, Indiana’s largest and oldest AIDS service organization, where Todd receives their HIV care. After the Damien Center interview, there were approached by theBody.com, to be interviewed as part of their Eye on the End series, designed to monitor the U.S.’s ‘Ending the HIV Epidemic’ Plan. Since then, Todd has ramped up their activism – joining the local Ryan White Planning Council and Marion County’s EHE Task Force. In July 2020, they attended the virtual International AIDS Conference IAC2020VIRTUAL with 20 other Hoosiers as a member of the Hoosier IAC Scholarship Fund Group.
As an artist and activist – or “artivist” – Todd started a social movement they call CelebrateUU. CelebrateUU builds on the concept of U=U, calling on individuals living with HIV/AIDS to start recognizing and celebrating anniversaries of having an undetectable viral load. In doing so, we build a digital patchwork of survivors and a time capsule of hope for when we end the HIV epidemic. For more information on how to participate, go to www.celebrateuu.org.