PM360 2022 Trailblazer Awards Diversity/Multicultural Brand Champion DJ Sethares

DJ Sethares, Global Senior Marketing Director, ViiV Healthcare

HIV continues to affect millions of individuals around the globe, and ViiV Healthcare is solely focused on providing both treatments and preventative therapies. DJ Sethares joined the organization as a senior global brand marketer in early 2021. She quickly energized her team and the organization to rethink the position of the oral therapy she was leading, challenging the team and the brand to see the greater potential. She was inspired by the team, and inspired the organization, to communicate differently about how people living with HIV from all walks of life could see their futures.

Rather than shy away from the stigma that can still be associated with the disease, DJ made the bold decision to feature “HIV +” in the very center of the campaign, emblazoned across the individual representing the patient.

By pairing two previously opposing ideas “HIV+HEALTHY,” the new campaign reclaimed the plus sign, shifting the meaning away from a marker of disease, redefining what it means to be HIV positive.

Providers connected deeply to the idea of all that people can accomplish when their lives are not defined by their HIV diagnosis, and were inspired by the idea of being “HIV plus healthy” as well as “HIV Positive Health.”

Additionally, given the brand’s global presence, DJ and her team cast models who spanned across all races and ethnicities and represented the wide range of ages, sexualities, and gender identities of people living with HIV. Ultimately, that included three patients older than 60 years, seven familial or platonic relationships, two cisgender women, and one transgender woman.


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