Peter Staley has been a long-term AIDS and gay rights activist, first as a member of ACT UP New York, then as the founding director of TAG, the Treatment Action Group. During those years, he was arrested ten times for civil disobedience and led some of ACT UP’s most publicized actions, including disrupting trading on the New York Stock Exchange, forcing Burroughs Wellcome to lower the price of AZT. He also organized an action that put a giant condom over the home of Senator Jesse Helms.
Staley served on the board of the American Foundation for AIDS Research (amfAR) for thirteen years and then founded AIDSmeds.com, an educational website for people living with HIV. He was a recent Fellow at Harvard’s Institute of Politics, and co-founded PrEP4All, advocating for a plan to end epidemic levels of HIV in the U.S.
Staley is a leading subject in the Oscar-nominated documentary How to Survive a Plague.