Amena Johnson


Doctor of Education, Higher Education Leadership, 2014                                                 Wilmington University, Wilmington, DE

Master of Science, Organizational Leadership, 2005                                                       Wilmington University, Wilmington, DE

Bachelor of Fine Arts, Drama Therapy, 1995                                                                           Longwood University, Farmville, VA


Sept 2022-  Present                    Hope in a Box

Washington, DC

Excutive Director

  • Develop and execute a multi-year vision and annual operating plan for Hope in a Box that allows it to provide increased support to schools and teachers throughout the country
  • Scale up the organization through strategic increases in headcount and contract workers to support current operations and future growth
  • Work with and report to the board of directors to ensure appropriate governance and oversight
  • Provide financial management of Hope in a Box, including by developing an annual budget and a multi-year financial sustainability plan
  • Design and implement a fundraising program that increases support from diverse funders and ensures the organization’s financial sustainability
  • Manage Hope in a Box’s program development, determining the most effective ways to meet demand for LGBTQ-inclusive literature, curriculum, and community
  • Work with educators and experts to strengthen and evaluate core programs, including by designing metrics to measure and communicate impact
  • Serve as media spokesperson and champion for Hope in a Box to press, educators and other external constituencies
  • Nurture and develop relationships with external stakeholders, including community representatives, funders, public officials, nonprofit leaders, educators, etc.
  • Create and execute an effective marketing and communications program

Nov 2019-  Sept 2022                   Georgetown University        

Washington, DC

Associate Director

  • Develop a range of programs for OUTober and Pride months.
  • Develop and implement workshops and trainings that develop student’s skills in social justice, conflict resolution, and critical dialogue
  • Provide training and guidance to student leaders on programming, leadership, and organizational development.
  • Create and foster cross-cultural partnerships and collaborations among a broad range of campus partners to work on issues related to sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression.
  • Assist Director in providing training, workshops, and facilitated discussions on LGBTQ issues as requested across various campus divisions for students faculty and staff

Jan 2018 – Oct 2019                      Prince George’s County Department of Social Services 

Landover, MD

AFFIRM Supervisor 

  • Provide support through training and coaching to all PGCDSS staff around working with LGBTQ youth and families
  • Develop a strategy to recruit participants for an 8 session CBT intervention for LGBTQ youth in foster care and their caregivers
  • Review and develop agency polices to ensure that the organization is affirming to LGBTQ people
  • Recruited, supervise and train two paid staff

Dec 2016-  Dec 2017                          LGBTQ Resources, George Mason University               Fairfax, VA

Assistant Director

  • Helped Housing and Residence Life develop policies and procedures that would be inclusive of transgender students and in compliance with Title IX
  • In partnership with the library hosted a screening of Moonlight. Facilitated a panel discussion after the film about the inclusion of black LGTBTQ narratives in the media
  • Worked with student groups and the Campus Climate Committee to respond to Milo Yiannopoulos’ campus visit
  • Planned the first Pride Week Brunch that included educational activities about the LGBTQ community. This event attracted 250 students, faculty and staff. It was the 2nd largest evet of Mason’s Pride Week.
  • Supervise The Program Coordinator

Sept 2015- Dec 2016               Office of Diversity Inclusion and Multicultural Education

Fairfax, VA

Interim Director

  • Implemented a reorganization plan for the unit. This included rewriting all staff job descriptions and leading the hiring process for 3 staff members
  • Lead the staff in developing new deliverables and metrics for the unit’s assessment plan
  • Worked with senior leadership and student groups to respond to student concerns about the election. Created programming and space that was inclusive to students on both sides of the issue to engage in conversation and reflection within 24 hours
  • Successful crisis management with the Native American Student organization and community Native American groups over relocation of the annual Powwow. The groups felt slighted because after 11 years their event was in a new location due to a scheduling mix up
  • Supervised programming for first generation students
  • Recruited, supervised and trained 7 professional staff

Dec 2012- June 2016                              LGBTQ Resources George Mason University            Fairfax, VA

Program Coordinator

  • Lead the committee that designed the new curriculum for Mason’s LGBTQ awareness training. Facilitated this training for faculty, staff and students 4-6 times a semester
  • Created the “Meet Me at My Intersections Campaign”. This campaign focused on creating an environment for conversations about the multiple identities people hold and how they intersect with our cultural values and norms
  • Facilitated a discussion about black LGBTQ authors and the erasure of black LGBTQ icons in the media
  • Became a trainer for Mason’s Inclusive Learning Community. In this role, I designed and facilitated diversity and inclusion training for staff in the student affairs division. We trained 167 student affairs staff
  • Planned events for the Laverne Cox lecture, including a panel on trans women of color in the prison system that took place before the lecture began. This was the largest event hosted by LGBTQ Resources, drawing 750 participants
  • Hosted the Intricate Identities Conference. This conference explores the intersections of race, culture and ability in the LGBTQ community. The conference is held in collaboration with 7 other universities in the area
  • Member of the Campus Climate Committee. This group reviews bias incident reports and responds to crises related to identity, inclusion and equity
  • Used my connections to LGBTQ organizations in the Washington DC area to connect students to resources outside of Mason. These relationships lead to students getting counseling services and volunteer opportunities


Aug 2015- Dec 2015                                 George Mason University   

Fairfax, VA                                                                                                                                 Adjunct Faculty, Women and Gender Studies                                      

  • Design and teach 2 courses: Introduction to LGBTQ Studies and Bias Within the LGBTQ Community
  • A student remarked that they decided to add Women and Gender Studies as their minor because of my class

Aug 2013- Dec 2014                Transition Resource Center George Mason University          Fairfax, VA

University 100 Faculty 

  • Co-taught first year student experience course with a student Peer Advisor
  • Mentored the Peer Advisor


Nov 2009 –  Jan 2012 Supporting and Mentoring Youth Advocates and  Leaders (SMYAL)

Washington, DC                                                                                                                   

Director of Programs

  • Provided training to counselors in DC Public schools. Training delivered to 550 participants
  • Established a partnership with the Price Georges County Police to train school resource officers
  • Lead an assessment project with Collegiate Academy in Washington, DC. Assessed teacher attitudes about LGBTQ issues. Developed a report and training based on these results
  • Trained officers in the DC Police Department on how to better serve the LGBTQ community
  • Represented SMYAL on the Prince Georges Youth Equality Project. In this group, I lead a committee that organized a conference for service providers about the needs of LGBTQ youth in foster care
  • Recruited, supervised and trained 4 paid staff and several volunteers

Oct 2007 –  Nov 2009              Gay Lesbian Straight Education Network (GLSEN)               Washington, DC

Community Initiatives Associate

  • Provided technical assistance and assessed performance of 11 volunteer led chapters across the country advocating for local and national safe schools policies and legislation and supporting Gay Straight Alliances
  • Conducted training and workshops for adult and youth chapter members

Jan 2007 – Oct 2007               Young Women’s Project                Washington, DC

Senior Program Manager Teen Women in Action

  • Managed participant recruitment, training activities, curriculum development, assessment, and relationship building for 4 after-school program sites in high schools in Washington, DC
  • Supervised and trained 3 paid staff

Mar  2006 – Jan 2007               Temple University Center for Intergenerational Learning          Philadelphia, PA

Training Manager

  • Developed face to face and online training curriculum and assessment tools for a training about engaging 50+ year old adults as volunteers. Training delivered to 200 participants
  • Assessed client training and technical assistance needs
  • Assisted in supervising trainers who worked in conjunction with center staff

Dec 2005 – July 2007               Leadership Practice               Milwaukee, WI 

ABCD Consultant

  • Develop curriculum and training materials on Asset Based Community Development (ABCD)
  • Delivered training about ABCD to non-profit organizations receiving funding from the Corporation for National and Community Service
  • Provided technical assistance about ABCD to clients

Nov 2001 – Mar 2006 National Conference for Community and Justice (NCCJ)/ YWCA Delaware      

Wilmington, DE                                      

Program Manager

  • Developed, implemented, and assessed youth and adult curriculum, technical assistance and training that addressed issues of diversity, inclusion, racism, sexism, religious bigotry, LGBTQ issues, ableism and other forms of bias and bigotry. Training delivered to 550 participants in schools and youth serving organizations
  • Recruited, supervised and trained 1 paid staff person and 7 volunteers

Jun 2000 –  Nov 2001              Girl Scouts of the Chesapeake Bay               Newark, DE

Program Specialist

  • Trained agency trainers on how to manage and facilitate volunteer training
  • Developed and implemented outreach programming for girls of color and low income populations ages 5-15
  • Developed a patch program for girls ages 6-11
  • Partnered with 20-30 youth serving organizations to provide programming
  • Supervised and volunteers and paid staff

Jul 1999 –  June 2000             Public Allies Delaware                                        Wilmington, DE

Program Manager 

  • Provided supervision, case management, job placement services, and individual development plans for 10 adults between the ages of 18-30
  • Developed and implemented training curriculum and service learning projects
  • Severed as the liaison between AmeriCorps members and partner organizations
  • Served as the contact for program alumni, and organized activities for alumn


Women & Gender Studies Executive Committee     George Mason University         March  2017 – Present

  • Member of a team that reviews and revises Women and Gender Studies curriculum
  • Assist with drafting proposal for a Sexuality Studies minor at George Mason University

Master’s Thesis Project Committee Chair      George Mason University                      Nov. 2016 – Present

  • Directed a project for Master of Art Interdisciplinary Studies, Concentration: Higher Education at George Mason University. Project Tile: Body Image Health Campaign at George Mason University

Sexual Misconduct Board          George Mason University                                                Nov. 2013 – Present

  • Sit on board that adjudicates alleged violations pertaining to sexual misconduct in the George Mason Code of Conduct
  • Attend 2 board meetings a semester
  • Chair one hearing a year

Certified Moving the Margins Trainer 

Nov. 2010 – Present

  • Attended a 2 day training of trainers developed by the National Association of Social Workers and Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund about how to build the skills of social workers and other welfare practitioners to better serve lesbian, gay bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) youth
  • Conduct training for youth serving organizations in Prince Georges County Maryland and the surrounding areas