Born14 December 1962 (age 53)
Boksburg (1962-12-14) InstitutionsUniversity of the Witwatersrand
South African Medical Research Council
Columbia University Known forHIV research, President of the South African Medical Research Council. Alma materUniversity of the Witwatersrand, Colleges of Medicine of South Africa FieldsMedicine, Pediatrics, HIV/AIDS
2012 glenda gray doctor of science honoris causa
Glenda Elisabeth Gray is a South African physician and scientist specializing in the care of children and in HIV medicine and was awarded South Africa's highest honor, the Order of Mapungubwe (Silver).
Hiv vaccine trial professor glenda gray
Gray was born in Boksburg in 1962. Her father was a miner and her mother was a bookkeeper. They lived in a conservative poor area of South Africa. Her family was not conservative, but radical, and they integrated into the black community. She was the fifth of six children who nearly all gained degrees and three of them took higher degrees. Gray's father had been to college and he was ambitious for his children including Glenda who from the age of six wanted to be a doctor. She was active in the anti-apartheid movement where she campaigned to de-segregate South African hospitals. Gray reports having dead cats thrown on their lawn.
She studied at University of the Witwatersrand in 1980 for six years and where she later worked. Gray has three children and when they were younger she led a small group at their school who looked at the problems of AIDS. Gray tells the story that at one poorly attended meeting Nelson Mandela turned up. He had already identified Gray for her work and this was useful in raising the profile of the subject and obtaining state funding for HIV anti-viral drugs.
She is a member of the Academy of Science of South Africa, a foreign associate of the United States Institute of Medicine, an A-rated National Research Foundation of South Africa scientist and a fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology. Her research expertise involves developing microbicides for sexually transmitted diseases and HIV vaccines. She is the executive director of the Pediatric HIV Research Unit (PHRU) based at Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital and has three children. Professor Gray has published more than 200 scientific articles; she holds an honorary doctorate from Simon Fraser University awarded in 2012.