History of Gay and Lesbian Life in Milwaukee, Wisconsin - People - Bios




"20 Giving 20" was part of the AIDS Resource Center of Wisconsin's commemoration of its 20th anniversary combating the AIDS epidemic. View all 20 of those honored on the ARCW "20 giving 20" page.

Al Graewin, M.D.

Al Graewin is a pioneer in AIDS prevention.

As a health educator for the La Crosse County Health Department, Graewin conducted some of Wisconsinís first HIV tests. The first positive test result he provided was to a young man with hemophilia.

"It was a frightening time in those early days. I was concerned about how we could help him medically, socially and psychologically. I realized we were not prepared."

Graewin took charge of AIDS programs in La Crosse and moved quickly to establish services for those in need and prevention strategies for those at risk.

"We began to realize the enormity of the epidemic and that living in western Wisconsin didnít make us immune, but instead created its own challenges."

Graewin developed unique prevention strategies and launched a nationally acclaimed Teen AIDS Peer Program that educated more than 4,000 teens about AIDS.

His thoughtful leadership was recognized by Governor Tommy Thompson who named him to a Wisconsin task force on HIV in the state prison system. After two decades, his commitment on AIDS continues to benefit Wisconsin.

"No one ever thought we would still be combating AIDS twenty years later."

Photos and Text courtesy AIDS Resource Center of Wisconsin, copyright 2005.
Last updated: 10-May-2005.