Tez Anderson

Public Speaker, Founder, and Writer in San Francisco, California

Tez Anderson

Public Speaker, Founder, and Writer in San Francisco, California

Tez Anderson is an award-winning, nationally recognized HIV Long-Term Survivor activist, writer, and speaker who focuses on HIV Long-Term Survivors Aging with HIV. Tez has been living with HIV since 1983. He's written for Time magazine.

The founder of Let's Kick ASS—AIDS Survivor Syndrome, the first and largest group in the world focused improving the lives of HIV long-term survivors and older adults aging with HIV.

He was recently named #5 of Our 75 Most Amazing HIV-Positive People of 2016 by HIV Plus magazine.

He's on the POZ Magazine's POZ 100 2015, as a long-term survivor making a difference in the fight against HIV and was profiled in Positively Aware and Al Jazeera America among other publications.

He coined AIDS Survivor Syndrome (ASS) to describe the spectrum of sustained trauma survivorship. It’s a psychological state resulting from living through HIV/AIDS pandemic. Especially vulnerable are those who became HIV-positive in the 1980s and 1990s when having HIV was considered a terminal diagnosis.

Tez created HIV Long-Term Survivors Awareness Day in 2014 to shine a spotlight on those living longest with HIV, who had felt forgotten and invisible as they age with HIV. https://LetsKickASS.hiv and https://hltsad.org.

His hallmark is an ability to write information about issues to make them accessible to long-term survivors and the general population. He's passionate improving the lives of older adults aging with HIV.

Tez became a gay rights advocate in his hometown Atlanta, Georgia in the early 1980s. Ian McKellen credits him with helping, now Sir Ian, come out. He is also a feature film screenwriter. He co-wrote The Night Listener, a feature film starring Robin Williams, Toni Collette and Bobby Cannavale.

In a People magazine article in 1990, we went public as a person living with HIV. He has always been out about his HIV-positive status.

He also served as Creative Consultant on the three groundbreaking Tales of the City miniseries that aired on PBS in 1994 and created a firestorm of protest because of miniseries depiction of life in San Francisco in 1976. The show was awarded a Peabody, a GLAAD Awar and was nominated for two Emmy Awards.

He is 59 and lives in San Francisco with his husband Mark Ruiz and their Labradoodle Riley.

  • Work
    • Let's Kick ASS
  • Education
    • Georgia State University