Nearing two decades, Cindy and Howard Rachofsky’s TWO x TWO for AIDS and Art plays a prominent role in raising funds for amfAR, The Foundation for AIDS research.

In January, the life of amfAR’s Founding Chairman Dr. Mathilde Krim slipped away at 91 years of age,

but not without leading the charge in research and activism against a disease that has claimed some 25 million lives since its onset.

In 1981, Dr. Krim was among the first to respond to the appearance of the then little-known Acquired Immunity Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS).

 A brilliant research scientist, geneticist, and virologist, she was well equipped to educate the community and determinedly assumed the medical research needed to treat the disease.

 Married to the prominent New York attorney Arthur Krim,

founder of Orion Pictures and adviser to Lyndon B. Johnson, she used her influence to establish the first privately funded AIDS research initiative, AIDS Medical Foundation.

Two years later, it merged with a California-based research and education organization to form the American Foundation for AIDS Research (amfAR),

which todate “has invested more than $450 million in its programs, spawning numerous significant advances in HIV prevention, treatment, and care.”

In 2015, The Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery received two portraits of this outstanding humanitarian,

one by Annie Leibovitz, which is currently on view in the institute’s In Memoriam space,

PORTRAIT OF A TRAILBLAZER and the other by Joyce Tenneson, gifted by amfAR. Decorated with 16 honorary doctorates

PORTRAIT OF A TRAILBLAZER and the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2000, Krim is remembered globally and lives on among the ranks of

“men and women who have made significant contributions to the history, development,

and culture of the people of the United States,” the Portrait Gallery’s platform.

“There is joy to be found in knowing that so many people alive today literally owe their lives to this great woman,” amfAR’s CEO Kevin Robert Frost said of her passing.

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