Cody Hall

b.1987

After spending most of my adult career as a banker I was afforded the opportunity to move to New York City where I have been able to follow my passion for the arts and it's community. After very publicly announcing my HIV status by doing a nationally aired commercial for Logo and Gilead I latched onto the opportunity and expanded my reach all the way back into my small hometown high school where I grew up. I graduated with 75 people in my class, so that's how small it was. I ended up recording a message for them that was played on their own (to my surprise) HIV awareness day. I was amazed by the outpouring of support that I received after that and committed myself to being a resource for anyone who needed help.

You see my HIV story isn't the norm, but then again what HIV story is? I was raped. Not that it makes my disease any different from the next person with HIV, but I think people expect my response or reaction to it to be different. The way I look at it, is life dealt me this specific hand for a reason. In my mind, it's because I can handle it. Someone else may not have been able to. And that's how I get up every day, take my one pill, and go on about my life. Really, at the end of the day, there's no other way to do it.

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My work is about exploring. Even if it's just your local neighborhood, if 1 person ever says to me that my work inspired them to explore this world we live in, then I will say I was a success.

Too often and what seems to be an acceptable norm today, I hear people say, "Oh I just sat around all day and watched TV." And that happens in this city. You don't need money, or plans, or expensive equipment to get out there and see the world you live in.

Push yourself to do something that might make you uncomfortable. It's the only way I figured out how to grow.

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