Bob Bowers HIV/AIDS Activist, Long-Term SURVIVOR, n’ Educator
“The human voice is the most important instrument at our disposal,
yet it is one of the most difficult to understand or define.
You either hear it, or you don’t. It either moves you, or it leaves you cold…it is more than just a sound…it is the soul itself.”
~ Neil Diamond
Bob Bowers, also known as “Da Pirate,” or “One Tough Pirate,” is a 30-year thriving survivor of HIV/AIDS. To broaden his message of survival, youth prevention through education, hope and compassion, he founded HIVictorious, Inc. ® in 2005. As an HIV positive speaker, Bob knows first-hand the importance of putting a face to the disease in hopes of reducing AIDS stigma. He is far from the ‘stereotypical’ image of a person with AIDS, thus having a profound and lasting impact on his audiences. He is generously outspoken about his life struggles and personal choices prior to the time of his infection. Through his public speaking, he shares how HIV disease has helped him to make better choices and to appreciate the very simple beauty of day-to-day life. “For everything negative I can say about HIV, I can also find something positive to say. It’s all about choices and playing the hand you are dealt.”
Contracting HIV three decades ago, before HIV testing was available, and shortly after receiving his ‘official’ diagnosis before anti-viral medications were available, Bob’s hope for survival turned immediately inward to mind, body and spirit. He continues to fight the daily battles of adverse drug reactions through his intense desire to live. His tough muscular and tattooed appearance is softened by his inner sincerity and compassion while sharing his 30-year experience with this devastating disease.
Mr. Bowers is truly dedicated to making a lasting difference in the fight against HIV/AIDS, as well as other social issues. He is a powerful and motivating public speaker that reaches out to a large array of diverse audiences. He is a tireless and passionate advocate helping to shape HIV/AIDS policy. He is also active in fund-raising events, camps for youth affected or infected by HIV, guest-speaking engagements, and youth prevention education in schools, colleges, jails and community organizations. He has been interviewed and featured through Film, Television, Radio, Magazine and Newspapers, and has written articles featured in Web-MD, The Body, and AIDS Project Los Angeles’ Positive Living. The feature length AIDS documentary, “The Fire Within”, follows his life with Shawn Bowers during 1999 and is a moving story of courage, passion for life and the healing use of choice. Some of Bob’s awards are: FWA Winner of Best Speaking Panel-Human Sexuality, San Diego State University; AIDS Network Client Services Volunteer Award and AIDS Network Executive Director’s Award for Outstanding Community HIV/AIDS Service, Madison, Wisconsin.
Recently, Bob had the honor of being a General in the fight to cure HIV. You can see him and the other POZ Army Generals by clicking here. His voice, passion, and commitment continues through OTP Productions, Inc.! You can view One Tough Pirate on the cover of POZ Magazine He was also featured on the cover of Positively Aware. You can view more of his story and outreach by following these links.
Bob is living proof that there is nothing impossible in this world if you apply yourself physically, spiritually and emotionally. He is a champion for hope and survival despite some of the difficult circumstances that we ALL face in life. Mr. Bowers states,
“Compassion is our cure ®.”
If you’d like to contact Bob, aka One Tough Pirate, you can use the below links to social networks.
“Bob Bowers is a passionate activist and educator. As someone who has lived with AIDS for over 30 years, Bob is not just a survivor. He works passionately to fight complacency and improve the lives of those around him. His commitment to teaching young people about the importance of healthy choices in their lives, and his advocacy of quality health-care for those living with AIDS, are just two examples of his numerous good works.”
United States Senator Tammy Baldwin
“If there was such a thing as a force of destiny in our lives, I would say that Bob Bowers was born for this role; no one has carried this difficult mantle with more dignity, conviction, purpose, and compassion.”
Madeleine Schwab – Crossroads High School – Santa Monica, California
“Sum legal jargon'”
HIVictorious® and compassion is our cure® are registered trademarks of HIVictorious, Inc.,
a U.S. registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit charitable organization
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