May 19, 2014
CCSA Advocates is proud to endorse Alex Johnson for Los Angeles Unified School District Board District 1 in the June 3 special election. Currently serving as a Senior Education and Public Safety Policy Advisor to County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas, Alex has years of proven results as an education policymaker and advocate for children. A graduate of Board District 1 schools, Alex is a forward-thinking leader who knows how to work with others to create solutions to systemic problems. He will be a tireless advocate for children in charter and traditional public schools alike.
After attending Rosewood Elementary and graduating from L.A. Center for Enriched Studies (LACES) High - both in Board District 1 - Alex received a B.A. in political science from Morehouse College in Atlanta. He then went on to earn a law degree from American University's Washington College of Law.
Alex is supportive of charter schools, particularly because he sees them as helping to strengthen public education, foster innovation and creativity, and close the achievement gap in Board District 1 schools, many of which are under-performing. Said Johnson : "I want to improve student performance and the quality of public schools in Board District 1 and across the entire LAUSD. Charter schools are part of the solution. Why would we want to put any kind of limits on that?"
Gary Borden, Executive Director of CCSA Advocates, said, "We are thrilled to endorse Alex Johnson for LAUSD Board District 1. Alex has demonstrated through his experience and our conversations with him that he supports the growth of high quality charter schools. He has proactively reached out to the community in both his campaign and his current role with Supervisor Ridley-Thomas, earning diverse support and demonstrating the ability to build bridges. Once elected, we're confident that he will be not only an ally of the charter school community, but also a visionary leader for all LAUSD students, parents and teachers."
Alex's commitment to service began under the late Rev. Dr. Thomas Kilgore Jr., one of L.A.'s most revered African American pastors. He remains a faithful member of Second Baptist Church. As an Equal Justice Works Fellow, he advocated on behalf of indigent defendants in the District of Columbia. Alex defended children and families as an Assistant District Attorney, standing up for victims of domestic violence. As Education Policy Advisor to Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas, he fights for better schools because he believes education is a civil right.
Alex worked with Children's Defense Fund founder Marian Wright Edelman to create the first-ever "Freedom School" in a California youth probation camp. The school gives incarcerated youths the literacy skills they need to turn their lives around. Working with Supervisor Ridley-Thomas, Alex has helped to expand access to quality preschool for L.A. kids, funded mobile health clinics to provide vision care to local students, and created a "safe passages" program to help youths get to school safely.
Alex Johnson has received endorsements from multiple political, business and community leaders, including:
- Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas
- City Council President Herb Wesson
- Congresswoman Janice Hahn
- Congresswoman Diane Watson (ret.)
- Supervisor Yvonne Burke (ret.)
- Rev. Xavier Thompson, President, Baptist Ministers Conference
The Board District 1 special runoff election takes place on August 12, 2014. Board District 1 encompasses parts of central and south Los Angeles.