Barry Krost, Entertainment Professional, Joins ARA’s BoardReturn to The Insider: News & Views
February 28 2013
A conversation with new board member, entertainment manager and producer, Barry Krost
LeVar Burton, Carolyn Carlburg & Barry Krost at ARA’s World AIDS Day 2012
AIDS Research Alliance is honored to announce the addition of British-born entertainment manager and producer Barry Krost to our Board of Directors.
As a manager, Barry Krost has been involved in the careers of some of the entertainment industry’s leading talents including, among others, Cat Stevens (Yusuf Islam), Angela Lansbury, Richard Gere, Liza Minnelli, LeVar Burton, Angela Bassett, Matthew Perry, and Elizabeth Montgomery, as well as prominent writer and directors such as Jackie Collins and Michael Scott. Krost has also produced or executive produced numerous feature films and TV shows.
Krost is actively involved in a number of charities and has served on the boards of the Southern Chapter of the U.S. Fund for UNICEF, APLA, The American Foundation for AIDS Research (AmFAR), and Project Inform.
Krost talks with us here about his background and why he has chosen to dedicate his time and resources to AIDS Research Alliance.
When did you move to the United States?
I came to Los Angeles in the late 1970s for work; all the people I represented worked here. And I had always wanted to live here – I was drawn to American music, films, and theater.
Have American music, films, and theater met your expectations?
They have all lived up to my hopes and dreams.
I came out at a very early age – during my early teens. Entertainment was one of the few industries in England where I felt safe and protected. Originally I wanted to be a movie star. I wanted to be loved and adored. But people’s appetite for pear-shaped, short, Jewish gay guys turned out to be limited. One day a friend said to me – “Are you willing to be an artist who fails? Or a businessman who protects them?” That’s when it became clear to me that this would be my path.
How did you find AIDS Research Alliance (ARA)?
ARA had another name when I was first involved – Search Alliance. I got involved in the very beginning – almost 25 years ago.
In those days there was such a feeling of panic and devastation. I got involved with a number of AIDS organizations, including ARA, AmFAR and APLA.
What brought you back to ARA?
What brought me back was the organization’s mission statement – the eradication of HIV/AIDS, as well as its energy and size. ARA isn’t so big that it’s bogged down by a corporate system. If the organization believes in something, they move on it.
What does a cure mean to you?
A cure at my age is one thing, but when you think of the generations to come—my nieces and nephews, my friends’ children – they’re the reason to fight for a cure.
Sometimes I ask myself why some of us survived this long – how we got through the battlefield. I think it’s for these generations coming up. A cure would be for them. Having watched this disease devastate so many people, it’s time for a cure. The devastation has got to stop.