Henry Nicols - Speaking Tour

Speaking Tour

Unlike those who had preceded him, and contrary to his fears, Nicols was embraced and protected by his community in Cooperstown, New York. This allowed him to complete the rest of his Eagle Scout project by educating people in colleges and high schools across New York State about his experiences living with AIDS.

By 1995, Nicols had established the Henry Nicols Foundation, a nonprofit organization to continue educating people about AIDS and to support other people with AIDS. He also continued traveling around the country to give educational talks.

Nicols went from being an unknown and secret AIDS patient to becoming a local hero and an international AIDS advocate. He was featured on the cover of Parade Magazine, had stories written about him in People Magazine and numerous other news journals. He was a featured guest on Good Morning America and other national news broadcasts and was interviewed by CBS news anchor Peter Jennings during a TV special on AIDS. Nicols used his new found notoriety to advocate for compassion and understanding for all those afflicted with AIDS. Nicols completed the requirements to be an Eagle Scout and was awarded the Eagle Scout Badge in July 1991. He was awarded the first ever Ryan White Award by the National Hemophilia Association, testified before Congress and met with New York Governor Mario Cuomo and Arnold Schwarzenegger, then Presidential Physical Fitness Advisor to George H. Bush. Nicols also met with Presidents George H. Bush, and William Jefferson Clinton to discuss AIDS related issues. Nicols was awarded an honorary Bachelors degree from The University of Scranton in 1992. He was awarded the Caring award in 1992 by the Heart of America Foundation. Nicols, his sisters Jennifer and Diana and his parents traveled around the United States and the world to set up AIDS support groups. They worked in Ireland, Canada and Japan and met with university students in 42 states in the United States to educate and support those with AIDS.

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