Listron Mannix says he is a rolling with the punches kinda of guy.

When asked what gets him of bed everyday, he playfully responds, “the sunrise – I should invest in black out shades. But once I am up, I am excited about the unknown factors of my day.”

In his role as Expanding Testing Initiative Manager, Mannix, 30, oversees testing and outreach efforts for the Pride Center at Equality Park. It is a challenging position for many reasons, but Mannix is more than equipped to handle the job.

Last year he earned his Ph.D. in clinical sexology, writing a dissertation on the importance of sexual self awareness for HIV testing counselors.

“Working at the Pride Center has certainly allowed me to fulfill my goal to work in the field of HIV/AIDS and to be part of a vehicle for change,” Mannix said.

Mannix has worked in the field of HIV/AIDS since 1996 when he started a peer program focusing on self esteem issues while living on the Caribbean island of Antigua. Born in the Bronx, N.Y., Mannix received his bachelor’s in psychology and master’s in social work from Florida Atlantic University.

He currently resides in Fort Lauderdale with his partner, Scott Belding.