The first thing one notices in Veronika Fimbres' presence is her sense of peace. And of course her genuine love for people. Fimbres no doubt understands the sting of prejudice as an African-American transgender woman, thus she does everything she can to inspire goodwill. Her accomplishments are many, and she has the awards to prove it. In 1996, she won the Testimony of Spirit Award from The Shanti Project for sharing her story to trainees in Shanti's volunteer program — Fimbres is a longterm HIV survivor. A veteran, she's the first transgender officer in San Francisco history: She served as the city's commissioner of Veteran's Affairs for 14 years. Also a registered nurse, she has lectured medical students at UCSF about how to treat transgender patients. She has worked with the AIDS Emergency Fund and was a three-year member of the mayor's HIV Planning Council. Fimbres is beloved by many for her transgender advocacy, and has been an honorary Grand Marshal in the San Francisco Pride Parade. She currently sits on the Pride Board.