By Julian Pecquet - 11/08/11 06:00 PM EST
Comedian and talk show host Ellen DeGeneres is the new public face of America’s worldwide fight against HIV and AIDS, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Tuesday.
Clinton made the announcement at the National Institutes of Health during an appeal for other nations to join the United States in creating an “AIDS-free generation.” In a letter to DeGeneres, Clinton wrote that the “enormous platform of your television show and your social media channels will enable you to reach millions of people with the strong and hopeful message that we can win this fight.”
In her remarks, Clinton also laid out a call to action, urging the international community to:
• Rely on science to guide prevention efforts;
• Require partner countries to have ownership of their AIDS programs and share more responsibility for funding the fight against AIDS within their borders; and
• Have other donor nations do more, including by supporting and strengthening the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria.
DeGeneres’s official title will be special envoy for global AIDS awareness.
“I’m happy that I can use my platform to educate people and spread hope,” DeGeneres said in a news release. “Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go look up what ‘envoy’ means.”