Brett Allen Johnson, 20, was officially elected president of the Jacksonville State University Student Government Association on Thursday (Mar. 19). Johnson is a 2011 graduate of Hokes Bluff High School.
“I’m ecstatic,” said Johnson. “The support has been more than overwhelming.”
Johnson is a junior dual majoring in political science and public relations. He won his bid for election without opposition after serving the past year as the SGA vice president.
“I was so surprised and honored to not have any opposition this time,” said Johnson. “Last year’s campaign was physically and mentally exhausting, but it was all worth it,” said Johnson.
Johnson said that he’s always loved politics and people, and that student government has allowed him to gain experience with both.
Johnson served as SGA secretary and senior class vice president at Hokes Bluff High School. Johnson says that his time in student government at Hokes Bluff helped prepare him for his career at JSU.
“Four years ago I was an average kid going to baseball practice and pushing buggies on the weekends,” said Johnson. “Now I will have the honor of leading 8,000-plus students in their pursuit of a better future.”
In spring of 2013, Johnson was elected SGA vice president at JSU with 62 percent of the 1,765 votes cast. By comparison, only 1,304 voters turned out for the last Jacksonville municipal election and 936 in Hokes Bluff.
As SGA vice president, Johnson presided over the legislative branch and was second-in-command to the president. He now will take over as the chief student body representative.
As president, Johnson will serve as a non-voting member of the university’s board of trustees, on top administrative boards and committees, and will preside over all factions of the Student Government Association.
Johnson says he hopes his achievements will inspire students across the state to aim high. “I always tell incoming freshmen to shoot for the moon,” says Johnson. “At the very least, you will land somewhere around the clouds.”
Johnson expects to graduate next spring and said he will either pursue a master’s degree in public administration or enter the local workforce. Johnson says that he has never seriously considered running for political office before, but “If it is God’s will, I will listen.”
Johnson also served as State Rep. and House Minority Leader Craig Ford’s Director of Constituent Services since January 2012.
“I basically help Rep. Ford out with various needs in and around the district, as well as with his legislative work as needed,” said Johnson.