CDC’s Faces from the Frontlines featured at Atlanta Airport

The world’s leading public health agency and the world’s busiest airport have teamed up to highlight individuals who are working on the frontlines fighting HIV and tuberculosis (TB).

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is at the forefront of the global response to the world’s two deadliest diseases—HIV and TB. CDC plays a significant role, providing scientific know-how and on-the-ground expertise to bring about significant impact.

In partnership with CDC, the Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport is sharing images and stories from CDC’s Faces from the Frontlines, which highlights individuals working on CDC’s global response as part of the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR). From screens throughout the airport, you can learn more about the individuals whose efforts and innovations are helping transform these epidemics. To capture these stories, over a 10-day period, photographer Thom Pierce traveled with colleagues from CDC to South Africa, to the epicenter of the global HIV and TB epidemics in Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal. This is a snapshot into the work CDC and PEPFAR are leading around the world.

Faces from the Frontlines

“We're here to celebrate change-makers, experts, innovators, caregivers and the dreamers who are focused on fighting HIV and TB,” said Dr. Hank Tomlinson, director, Division of Global HIV and TB, CDC, at the exhibit launch. “This photo and narrative exhibit, Faces from the Frontlines, depicts the everyday experiences of our beneficiaries, their caregivers, our partner and our experts.”

If you traveling through Atlanta’s airport, take some time to learn more about those who are making our world healthier and safer—here are some of their stories:

  • Nthabiseng, 26, lost her mother to HIV when she was 8 years old and never knew her father. She wandered the streets of her village for most of her childhood—often without shoes, sometimes without food. Today, thanks to the CDC/PEPFAR initiative and her own determination, Nthabiseng is a trained community caregiver, providing education and support for vulnerable children.
  • The year was 2003 and the HIV crisis was at its peak. At 27 and with a newly minted PhD, Karidia joined a small group of CDC laboratorians charged with helping to launch an effort known as PEPFAR. Today, Karidia is chief of the lab program in South Africa—overseeing one of the most cutting-edge lab efforts in Africa.
  • At 19, Magnificent survived multidrug-resistant TB thanks to treatment he received in a CDC-supported health facility. He is now living a healthy life and pursuing his dreams of becoming an engineer and looking after his family. Today, he is channeling his struggle into advocacy, educating others about the threat of multidrug-resistant TB.

“Nothing is more effective than seeing the faces of the individuals,” said Dr. Robert Redfield, CDC director. “CDC continues to have people on the frontlines. We have been a critical partner in providing treatment and prevention services around the world.”

The airport is providing a platform to share CDC’s lifesaving work. The exhibit can be seen on screens throughout the airport until October 29. “This wonderful exhibit shares the voices of those affected by HIV and TB, as well as the innovations and efforts of those leading the response to these epidemics,” said Greg Richardson, deputy general manager and CFO, Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport. “It is moving. It is educational. Most deservingly, it will be everywhere at Hartsfield-Jackson.”

If you are not traveling this month, you can also view the stories and photos online:

View Faces from the Frontlines

Terri Heyns
Terri Heyns, MA, is the vice president for communications for the CDC Foundation.