Category Archives: News

SMART Body visits Carter Burden!

On Sunday, March 15, we took our crowd-pleasing SMART Body program to Carter Burden – Covello Senior Center, where our Chef Nutritionist Tawnya wowed residents with recipes that were delicious, balanced and affordable.

Mary Fisher, Keynote Speaker at SMART’s Graduation

SMART’s 16th Annual Graduation

SMART cordially invites you to our 16th Annual Graduation this Wednesday, June 18th from 4:30pm-7:30pm being held at SCAN LaGuardia Memorial House on 307 East 116th Street in East Harlem. Our graduation is a unique experience. We celebrate, recognize and honor the women and their accomplishments that we have witnessed throughout the academic year. Each woman has a different story to tell, and each woman has gained something of value from SMART. A dinner prepared by our SMART Body women that showcases their exquisite culinary talents will follow the ceremony.
This year, we are thrilled and deeply honored to have Mary Fisher as our keynote speaker! Mary is a gifted artist, relentless advocate for vulnerable women, and a mother. By mid-1991, Mary was a recognized artist and the recently divorced mother of two young sons, Zachary and Max, when she was diagnosed HIV-positive. In early 1992, at the urging of AIDS activists struggling with both the disease and discrimination, she went public with her diagnosis.  Several months later, she strode onto a stage at the Republican National Convention. The stigmatizing image of AIDS as “a gay disease” drew special attention to Mary’s story.  By the time she finished her Convention address in August, she had become a voice for those who dared not speak out.

Over the past two decades, Mary has balanced her passion for art and her commitment as an advocate. Her work as a world-class jewelry designer has led to lines of bracelets produced by vulnerable women in Africa. She has authored six books, given countless speeches, and traveled the globe as a Special Representative of the United Nations representing the call to justice and healing for those most affected by poverty, violence and AIDS.

Catherine Hanssens, Founder and Executive Director of The Center for HIV Law and Policy (CHLP), will be presented with the John Falkenberg Lifetime Achievement Award at the event. The Award acknowledges extraordinary individuals who have dedicated their work to improving the health and lives of others by fighting for human rights and social justice. As director of CHLP, the first national legal resource and strategy center for people with HIV and their advocates, Catherine has drawn national attention to HIV criminalization – the use of criminal law to penalize people living with HIV for conduct that would be indisputably legal if they did not get tested or know their status.

Please view the invitation here and RSVP your attendance to If you are unable to attend, please support our work by making an on-line tax deductible donation here. As a small grassroots organization, any amount, large or small, helps ensure that we are able to celebrate and continue the transformative experiences of SMART women today and for years to come.