Charles Stephens

Founder & Executive Director

Charles is the Director of Counter Narrative and co-editor of the anthology Black Gay Genius: Answering Joseph Beam’s Call. He has over 10 years experience developing innovative community engagement initiatives, piloting programs, and mobilizing black gay men. Most recently he was the conference coordinator for the 2014 “Whose Beloved Community? Black Civil and LGBT Rights Conference” hosted by Emory University, and in 2013 served as a Grand Marshall for the Atlanta LGBT Pride Parade.

Charles has been a Co-Chair of the Emory University Hope Clinic Community Advisory Board, led the AID Atlanta sponsored social marketing campaign targeting young black gay and bisexual men called “From Where I Stand.” He has worked with such organizations as The Ford Foundation, AIDS United, and AID Atlanta as a consultant, providing strategic guidance and thought-partnership around program development and policy advocacy with black gay and bisexual men. Charles has been a fellow at the CDC Institute for HIV Prevention Leadership and the Black AIDS Institute Community Mobilization College. He was selected by the National Youth Advocacy Coalition in 2009 to present on his work at their “Best Practices Working With LGBT Youth of Color Summit.” In 2012 he was invited to present on LGBT youth issues at the White House LGBT Summit held in Atlanta. His work in Black LGBT politics and culture has been honored by PFLAG, ZAMI (which awarded him their Marlon Riggs Social Justice Award) and Unity Fellowship Church which honored him with their Community Award.

Charles has a Huffington Post Gay Voices blog, his writing has also appeared in the Georgia Voice, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Lambda Literary Review, The Gay and Lesbian Review, Alternet, and WireTap. 

Content Expertise: black gay men, HIV/AIDS, gender and sexuality, art and activism, media engagement, cultural competence, stigma, community mobilization.



Johnnie Ray Kornegay, III

Mobilization & Network Director

Johnnie Ray Kornegay III is the Mobilization & Network Director for Counter Narrative Project, and he's also the Founder & Artistic Director of Staticc Art & Life, LLC, an arts company with the mission “delivering beauty to the world.” Johnnie spent more than 15 years working in corporations, and is a subject matter expert in Recruiting, Call Center Operations and Professional Networking.

As an advocate, Johnnie has been involved in HIV and civil rights advocacy for as long as he can remember. In the late-1990s he trained with the American Red Cross in HIV education, and did outreach work for the Chester AIDS Coalition. Johnnie is passionate about blending his experiences into his non-profit work. For Counter Narrative Project he has written blogs, and he has produced and hosted the podcast Counter Point. In 2016, the two public bodies of photographic and video work he exhibited  - #BeTheFlame and untitled - included themes dealing with the impact of HIV on Black gay men. In 2017, Johnnie co-curated, World AIDS Day Atlanta events and I AM... - Arts, Activism and HIV, an exhibit at the National Center for Civil and Human Rights, about the importance of an artistic response to HIV in the community. 

Johnnie currently serves as co-Chair of the Georgia HIV Justice Coalition, a broad-based coalition of both individuals and organizations working across movements to bring an end to the criminalization of people living with HIV.