Remembering Giulio Maria Corbelli

An illustration of Giulio Maria Corbelli

The SBS-CEU is mourning the loss of our friend and teammate Giulio Maria Corbelli, Community Engagement Project Manager for the European sites in the Mosaico study (HVTN 706), who passed away on Sunday, November 6, 2022, at the age of 56. We are remembering his gentle nature, his warmth that was felt in every conversation and written communication, and his fierce advocacy for the LGBTQ+ community and those living with HIV. Giulio was instrumental in helping the European clinical trial sites implement the Good Participatory Practice-based Community Engagement model that has been the HVTN standard since the network was formed, representing a substantial shift for the sites and a significant effort for everyone involved. In addition to his leadership on Mosaico, he was deeply involved in advocacy work in his native Italy as well as in the European Union, and he sought to inspire other advocates around the world. He touched the lives of many, as noted in these excerpts:

Giulio was also the first president of L’Altro Volto Lucca, the first LGBT association in Lucca. Moving to Rome, he then became an activist in associations in support of HIV-positive people and in the fight against AIDS. Until the last he held the position of president of Plus Roma. In 2003, he was the organizer of a protest demonstration, after a homophobic assault on the Baroni bookstore, which had seen the participation of over 2000 people in the historic center of Lucca. "If the young LGBT citizens of Lucca live in a less homo-transphobic city - said the LGBT activist Massimiliano Piagentini - they owe it to the tireless work of Giulio, who left us too soon. We will always remember him with immense affection and gratitude.”   [translated from Italian, excerpted from ll Corriere della Città, 7 November 2022,]

This is a very sad day for the EATG family and Giulio’s loved ones. We are mourning the passing of a great friend and colleague, a tireless and dedicated HIV and LGBTI activist. His contribution in EATG’s work has been pivotal. His passion, knowledge, strength and optimism will remain inspirational to all of us. We will always remember Giulio for his generous smile, his persistence, and his involvement both nationally and internationally. [excerpted from European AIDS Treatment Group, 7 November 2022,]

Our thoughts go out to his mother and sister, and his many friends and colleagues around the world. The world has lost a true champion in the fight for LGBTQ+ equality, the fair and equitable treatment of people living with HIV, access to PrEP, and the search for an HIV vaccine. We feel blessed to have had the opportunity to get to know Giulio and work with him.  He was an incredible colleague and a good friend. We already miss him.

Giulio Corbelli with the SBS-CEU team at dinner
Giulio Corbelli with the SBS-CEU at dinner
Giulio Corbelli at a march