Board Highlight: Andrew Johnson

Andrew Johnson, secretary of YC’s Board of Trustees, always feels a sense of joy when at YC.

“It’s hard not to end a YC interaction—being at the board level, observing a program—with having a smile on your face,” Andrew said.

Andrew first caught a glimpse of that passion through Cleveland Bridge Builders, a program through the Cleveland Leadership Center that connects mid-career professionals to nonprofit organizations. Through this program, Andrew was in a class with several members of the YC community, including staff member Angelica Compton, former YC staff member Christian Swol, participant alum Sean Walker, and board member Jud Cummins.

“Everyone was really great to work with and really passionate about YC and that enthusiasm tends to bleed over,” Andrew said. “When someone’s enthusiastic about an organization and its cause, it’s hard not to adopt that view as well.”

Andrew became involved with Youth Challenge through the Young Professionals 4 Youth Challenge (YP4YC) group and helped plan the first Brats, Beer & Brackets event. He said it has been rewarding to see the event’s success year after year.

Andrew also had a built-in connection to YC through his employment at Oatey Company, which has been a Youth Challenge partner for over four decades. He officially became a member of the Board of Trustees in 2019. Currently, Andrew works for Oatey Company’s legal team as Senior Vice President, General Counsel.

Andrew volunteers at Cleveland Legal Aid Society, where he provides free legal assistance to low-income clients. He uses his law expertise to advise YC staff and fellow board members in making decisions for the organization.

“The size of YC is such that you’re able to make a meaningful contribution to the organization as a board member,” Andrew said.