Campaign season is off to an early start in Tallahassee. And right in the middle of it is a two-time graduate of Florida A&M University, Josh Johnson.
Johnson, a teacher at Godby High School, has officially filed to run for the Leon County Commission at-large seat. He will be challenging Nick Maddox, who is seeking a fourth term on the county commission. Johnson is no stranger to politics. This will be his second time running for political office. He was defeated previously in 2016 for the House District 9 seat.
Johnson believes he’s ready for another try at the elected office after a six-year hiatus from politics.
“It’s all about timing. Never did I specify a time I wanted to run again but due to certain circumstances, I felt it was right. I’m going to put my best foot forward and give people a voice,” Johnson said.
Johnson has many points of emphasis that he wants to address if elected to the county commission. Johnson wants to use his familiarity with the area to his advantage in his campaign.
“I spent my 33 years of life in Tallahassee, and it remains the same. I’m ready to serve and represent the people of Tallahassee the way they should [be]. I want development that is equitable for Leon County.”
Johnson, a Tallahassee native, earned a bachelor’s degree in political science and a master’s in global securities from FAMU. He teaches economics and government at Godby High School. Johnson is also an adjunct professor at Tallahassee Community College.
“I carry FAMU whenever I go. I want to be another success story from the school of success stories. The teachings I have learned at FAMU have molded me as a person.”
Additionally, Johnson serves as the president of the board of directors of the community arts nonprofit, 621 Gallery. He also is heavily involved in business consultations of various organizations in the Tallahassee area.
Sophia Ballesteros, acting president of the 621 galleries and a colleague of Johnson’s for multiple years, admires Johnson’s character.
“Anyone who knows Josh knows he is a great person. The community arts society knows he is a passionate and professional individual. His positivity can persevere through all circumstances,” Ballesteros said.
Business partner and close friend of Johnson, Harold Stevenson, said Johnson would be a great fit as a Leon County commissioner.
“His willingness and desire to help people is unmatched. He wants to improve Tallahassee and, most importantly, unite the people of Leon County. If there is a need, Josh will give 100% effort on improving the situation or circumstances in any way he can,” Stevenson said.
Johnson and Maddox are set to meet in an August primary. If either one earns 50 percent or more of the vote, they will be declared the winner.