Board of Supervisors

Willie Johnson, Jr.

13th District Supervisor

Dear Neighbors,

It has been an honor and special privilege to serve the constituents of the 13th Supervisor District who live in the Arlington Heights, Borchert Field, Brewers Hill, Grover Heights, Halyard Park, Harambee, Hillside, Lincoln Park, Lindsay Heights, North Division, Riverwest, Rufus King, Southwest Whitefish Bay and Williamsburg Heights neighborhoods.

I'm most appreciative of the support given by voters, organizations and associations for the past 21 years. I value your emails, calls and in-person comments, questions and suggestions about Milwaukee County government and how you and families may benefit from the services we provide.

Constituents and neighborhood groups are encouraged to contact my office to discuss any issues and concerns or to schedule a meeting.

Call my office at (414) 278-4233.

Click here to email me.

Thank you,

Supervisor Willie Johnson, Jr.

About Supervisor Johnson, Jr.

Willie Johnson, Jr. was first elected 13th District Supervisor in 2000 and is serving his seventh term on the Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors.

Supervisor Johnson was born in Waukegan, Illinois, on March 22, 1951. A resident of Milwaukee since childhood, he graduated valedictorian of his class at Lincoln High School, earned a Bachelor's Degree in Political Science with a concentration of courses in Economics from Northwestern University, has been conferred a Master's Degree and a Doctor of Philosophy in Humanities Degree from the Wisconsin University of Theology, and has completed courses for the Master's Degree of Public Administration program at the UM-Milwaukee. Prior to his election, Supervisor Johnson worked for the Milwaukee County Department of Human Services Financial Assistance and Child Welfare divisions.

Supervisor Johnson is a member of the Cambridge Who’s Who Among Executives and Professionals, Democratic Party, Life Member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity Inc., Metropolitan Milwaukee Fair Housing Council, Diamond Life Member of NAACP, Milwaukee Urban League, 100 Black Men of Greater Milwaukee, National Forum for Black Public Administrators, National Association of Black County Officials, National Association of Social Workers and National Museum of African American History and Culture Director's Circle Plus Charter Member. Supervisor Johnson is a trained consultant/facilitator for the Nurturing Program and a trained AODA assessment counselor.

He has been a board member of Neighborhood Housing Services/NeighborWorks of Milwaukee, a task group member for the Housing Opportunity Partnership for Southeastern Wisconsin and Strategies to Overcome Predatory Practices of the Metropolitan Milwaukee Fair Housing Council, and is a member of the MMFHC Advisory Committee. Trained by the Homeownership Counseling Consortium, he is both a homeownership counselor and a homeownership educator.

To address community and economic development issues, Supervisor Johnson has been a member of the Harambee Ombudsman Project, the Riverwest Neighborhood Association, the Great Harambee Neighborhood Initiative, and was a Youth Enterprise Academy presenter for the UWM Center for Economic Education. For twelve years, Supervisor Willie Johnson, Jr. was a consultant/volunteer teacher for Junior Achievement of Wisconsin, and for many years, he was a Merit Badge Counselor for the Personal Management and American Business merit badges for youths registered with Three Harbors Council, Boy Scouts of America. Since 2001, Supervisor Johnson, Jr. has provided letters of support to nonprofit organizations, economic development corporations, churches, and emerging developers/contractors for tax credits and funding for affordable housing and office space projects. Also, the supervisor was a board member of The Private Industry Council/Milwaukee Area Workforce Investment Board and a local advisory committee member for the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) Milwaukee to address neighborhood revitalization concerns. Finally, Supervisor Johnson, Jr. served as a board member for the Urban Economic Development Association of Wisconsin and Rebuilding Together of Greater Milwaukee.

He is a board member of Economics Wisconsin, Three Harbors Council of the Boy Scouts of America, Milwaukee Innercity Congregations Allied for Hope (MICAH), and the Milwaukee County Historical Society. Supervisor Johnson is Chairman of the Learning For Life Committee of the Three Harbors Council, President of the Wisconsin County Mutual Insurance Corporation, Vice Chairman of the Community Insurance Corporation, and is a current board member and Past President of Wisconsin Counties Association. Supervisor Willie Johnson, Jr. was a board member of Milwaukee Public Theatre from 2000-2019.

One year before he became a Milwaukee County employee, Willie Johnson, Jr. volunteered at the Milwaukee Minority Chamber of Commerce. In 1986, he assisted minority business development firms in completing applications to become certified for participation in the City of Milwaukee's Minority Business Enterprise Program. In 2005, the Milwaukee Innercity Congregations Allied for Hope (MICAH) presented County Supervisor Willie Johnson, Jr., the author of the Park East Redevelopment Compact, and other Supervisors the MICAH “To Do What Is Just” award for ensuring community benefits such as prevailing wages, affordable housing initiatives, and the use of disadvantaged business enterprise firms through the PERC in county contracts. Further, in 2008 the Wisconsin Minority Business Opportunities Committee honored Supervisor Johnson, Jr. with a recognition for “Outstanding Service” from 2003-2007. In 2012, the Wisconsin Women's Business Initiative Corporation bestowed upon Supervisor Johnson, Jr. a Special Recognition for outstanding support of WWBIC.

An advocate of small business formation, Supervisor Johnson is a former member of the State of Wisconsin Minority Business Development Board and the State Department of Administration Council on Small Business, Veteran-Owned Business and Minority Business Opportunities; having been the author of the Park East Redevelopment Compact, he was a member of the Milwaukee County Committee to Redevelop the Park East and the chairman of the Milwaukee County Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Steering Committee.

Having been a member of the Marquette Interchange Project DBE Advisory Committee of the Wisconsin Department of Transportation during his first term and a member of Marquette Interchange Project DBE Goal Setting Committee during his second term, the supervisor is the former chair of the Labor Development Committee of WISDOT’s SE Freeways Milwaukee County Urban DBE Advisory Committee. In 2002, the WISDOT Secretary awarded a certificate to Supervisor Willie Johnson, Jr. in recognition of dedication and service to the Wisconsin Department of Transportation's Marquette Interchange DBE Advisory Committee. In 2008, Supervisor Johnson received a Civil Rights Partnership Award from the Federal Highway Administration in recognition of his efforts to promote and achieve the goals and objectives of the FHWA civil rights programs through the synergy of working relationships. He was honored for his involvement on the Marquette Interchange Project’s Business Development and Labor Development Committees. In 2010, the Wisconsin Department of Transportation presented Supervisor Johnson with the Secretary's Golden Shovel Award for promoting DBE firms and workforce diversity and inclusion. Having been appointed by Governor Jim Doyle in 2004 to the State of Wisconsin Minority Business Development Board, Governor Doyle presented a Certificate of Appreciation to Supervisor Willie Johnson, Jr. for reviewing and approving low interest loans to assist in the startup and expansion of minority owned businesses across the State of Wisconsin in November 2010. In 2015, Supervisor Johnson was named Minority Small Business Champion by the U.S. Small Business Administration - Wisconsin. Early in 2021, Supervisor Johnson was named to the Wisconsin Department of Transportation DBE Stakeholder Advisory Committee to serve on the Committee’s Business Sub Committee and Labor Sub Committee as well as the DBE Stakeholder Advisory Committee.

Within county government, the Milwaukee County Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Program presented its 2001 Merit Award to Supervisor Willie Johnson, Jr., a DBE Steering Committee member and the other steering committee members. In 2005, Supervisor Johnson, Jr. and other Milwaukee County Supervisors were recognized for their leadership and support for the Milwaukee County Office of Community Business Development Partners’ mission and goals. In 2011 and 2012, different executive directors of the Office of Community Business Development Partners honored Supervisor Johnson, Jr. with the only “Milwaukee County Small Business Champion Awards” for those years. In 2011, the agency noted “Leadership is priceless; we thank you for your service”.

Other recognitions, honors, and awards include the YWCA of Greater Milwaukee giving Supervisor Johnson, Jr. a plaque for 12 years of dedicated service to the Vel R. Phillips YWCA Center in 2001. Having been presented the George Meany Award by the Milwaukee County Council of the Boy Scouts of America in 1997 to recognize union members who have given significant contributions to youth by volunteering in BSA programs, in 2001 the Milwaukee County Council provided the Whitney Young, Jr. Service Award to Supervisor Willie Johnson, Jr. for demonstrated involvement in the development and implementation of Scouting opportunities for youth from rural or low income urban backgrounds. Having attended Badger Boys State sponsored by the Wisconsin American Legion in high school, The American Legion acknowledged with a certificate the supervisor's participation for various Milwaukee County Board Student Government Days. The Wisconsin Extension Community Development Association granted to Supervisor Johnson, Jr. “The Wisconsin Idea Award” in 2003. In 2004, UW Extension furnished an award in grateful appreciation for outstanding dedication and tireless service to Cooperative Extension programs for helping to defeat annual attempts to remove funding for Milwaukee County UW Extension from the Milwaukee County adopted budget. In 2004, Fighting Back Inc. and Smoke Free Wisconsin recognized Supervisor Johnson, Jr. and the other County Board Black Caucus Supervisors with an appreciation award for their outstanding commitment and service to communities of color. The Milwaukee County Council of the Boy Scouts of America provided its initial 2005 Individual Diversity Achievers Award to Willie Johnson, Jr. For many years, Career Youth Development, Inc. provided CYD Image Awards for excellence in community service, love of youth, and practicing "Love In Action" to County Supervisor Johnson, Jr. In 2007, The Milwaukee Community Journal, Inc. honored County Supervisor Johnson, Jr. with “The Best of The Best Award”, celebrating the community’s Black men at the 31st Annual Gala. The Wisconsin Fair Housing Network’s Individual Elected Official Award was bestowed upon Willie Johnson, Jr. in 2008. That same year, The Parenting Network recognized Supervisor Johnson, Jr., Board Director from 2001-2008, with deep appreciation for outstanding leadership. With the message “Community Partners Make All Things Possible”, Community High School staff and students thanked Supervisor Johnson, Jr. with a recognition for service to the school in 2008. The Zion Hill Missionary Baptist Church accorded County Supervisor Willie Johnson, Jr. a recognition in appreciation for outstanding public service in 2009. Also in 2009, The Fighting Back Golden Team Appreciation Award was given to the Supervisor with deep appreciation as a Fighting Back board member. At the 2010 Freedom Fund Dinner, the Milwaukee Branch of the NAACP presented the Outstanding Politician Award to Supervisor Willie Johnson, Jr. and other elected officials for positive actions toward making the community a better place. The Milwaukee River Preservation Association conferred on County Supervisor Willie Johnson, Jr. a plaque in appreciation for his dedication to protecting community beauty and recreational opportunities through his support of preserving the Estabrook Dam. The National Association of Social Workers-Wisconsin Chapter presented the NASW WI 2011 Public Service Award for his many contributions to the social workers of Milwaukee County and their clients for his pursuit of social and economic justice. Equality Wisconsin recognized Willie Johnson, Jr., Milwaukee County Supervisor, as an “Equal Rights Champion.” The Fair Wisconsin Education Fund named Supervisor Johnson, Jr., other Supervisors and County Executive Chris Abele as “Community Advocates of the Year for 2012.” In 2012, the Milwaukee County Department of Family Care Service Award was accorded to Supervisor Willie Johnson, Jr., a member of the MCO Governing Board. The Harambee Great Neighborhood Initiative conferred on Supervisor Johnson, Jr. the 2014 Harambee Community “I’m In” Award to recognize his unwavering commitment to the Harambee community and its residents. In 2016, the Milwaukee County Research Park recognized County Supervisor Willie Johnson, Jr. for his service on the Research Park’s Board of Directors from 2000-2016. In 2019, the Friends of Lincoln Park presented Supervisor Johnson, Jr. a certificate in appreciation for "Exceptional Service" to the Lincoln Park Community.

Supervisor Johnson is Chairman of the Pension Study Commission and is appointed to the Milwaukee Child Welfare Partnership Council, Milwaukee Community Justice Council Evidence-Based Decision Making Policy Team, Milwaukee County Commission for Persons with Disabilities, Milwaukee Community Justice Council Executive Committee, Milwaukee County Capital Improvements Committee and Milwaukee County Pretrial Services Advisory Board. He is a member of the UW Colleges/UW Extension STEM Precollege Institute Committee, a member of the National Association of Social Workers - Wisconsin Chapter Legislative/Policy Committee, and was formerly Secretary - Treasurer of the Milwaukee County Department of Family Care (MCDFC) Managed Care Organization (MCO) Governing Board.

Supervisor Willie Johnson, Jr. is Vice Chairman of the County Board's Finance Committee (formerly Finance and Audit Committee) having been on that committee since 2004, a member of the County Board Personnel Committee, and Vice Chairman of the County Board Intergovernmental Relations Committee. He served eight of 12 years as Chairman of the Judiciary, Safety, and General Services Committee, 15 years on the Economic and Community Development Committee and eight years on the Health and Human Needs Committee; he was for four years Co-Chair of the County Board Finance, Personnel and Audit Committee. He has served on the Milwaukee County AODA Quality Assurance Task Force, Milwaukee County Parks, Recreation and Culture Dedicated Funding Task Force, and the Milwaukee County Task Force on Segregation and Race Relations. A member of the Government Finance Officers Association, Supervisor Johnson serves on the Milwaukee County Strategic Planning Operations Team, Milwaukee County Local Emergency Planning Committee and is Community Emergency Response Team trained.

Map of the 13th Supervisory District

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Press Releases

County Board of Supervisors Congratulate Colectivo Workers on Successful Union Election


On Monday, workers at Colectivo Coffee won an election to form a union by a margin of 106-99, after the National Labor Relations Board opened up seven challenged ballots that were uncounted during the first count, which resulted in a 99-99 tie result.

Supervisors Denounce Anti-Democratic Coup Attempt in Washington D.C.


Supervisors Ryan Clancy, Joseph J. Czarnezki, Jason Haas, Willie Johnson, Jr., Sylvia Ortiz-Velez, Shawn Rolland, Steven Shea, Liz Sumner and Sheldon A. Wasserman released the following statement regarding the riotous mob storming the United States Capitol in a reprehensible attempt to stop Congress from certifying the Presidential election

County Board of Supervisors Congratulate the Bucks on Historic NBA Championship


On Tuesday night the Milwaukee Bucks defeated the Phoenix Suns in game 6 of the NBA Finals to win the team’s first NBA Championship since 1971.

County Board Introduces Resolution to Prohibit Use of Chokeholds


13 Milwaukee County Supervisors have introduced a resolution calling upon the county’s Civil Service Commission to prohibit the use of chokeholds and asphyxia by all Milwaukee County employees, including Sheriff’s Deputies and Correction Officers.

Milwaukee County Board Black Caucus Overjoyed to Once Again Celebrate Juneteenth Day In Person


We are overjoyed to once again be able to observe Juneteenth Day in person this year, especially given that this marks the 50th anniversary of Milwaukee’s storied celebration. For many of us, Juneteenth Day is more than just a time to connect with our community. It is a day to honor our history and chart our future.

County Board’s Black Caucus is Developing Proposals to Achieve Racial Equity


As part of Milwaukee County’s ongoing work to achieve racial equity, the Black Caucus of the Board of Supervisors is developing a set of policy proposals to dismantle systemic racism, improve accountability for law enforcement, and provide necessary services to the public. The Black Caucus released the following statement today regarding their policy ideas and the protests related to the murder of George Floyd by Minneapolis police officers.

Supervisors Denounce Violence and Discrimination Against Asian Americans


On Tuesday a gunman killed eight people across three Atlanta-area spas—six of whom were women of Asian descent—in the latest example of a rising number of violent Anti-Asian American crimes during the COVID-19 pandemic.

County Supervisors Taylor and Johnson Honor Bus Operators for Outstanding Service


County Supervisors Willie Johnson, Jr., and Sequanna Taylor recognized seven Milwaukee County bus operators Thursday for coming to the aid of vulnerable young children they encountered while driving their route.

Board of Supervisors to Celebrate Black History Month Virtually on February 4


The Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors will celebrate Black History Month during its regular monthly meeting on Thursday, February 4 at 9:30 a.m.

Sheriff Clarke Rejects Invitation to Meet With Judiciary Committee


Sheriff David Clarke, Jr., did not appear at a special meeting of the County's Judiciary, Safety, and General Services Committee Thursday morning that was called specifically for him.

Supervisors’ Statement on the Passing of Henry ‘Hank’ Aaron


On Friday, January 22, 2021 Henry “Hank” Aaron, Baseball Hall of Famer of the Milwaukee Braves, Atlanta Braves and Milwaukee Brewers, passed away. County Board Chairwoman Marcelia Nicholson and thirteen County Supervisors released the following statement in response.

Supervisors to Consider External Investigations of In-custody Deaths


County Board Supervisors will consider a resolution on Thursday that would establish a policy for external investigations of in-custody deaths at the Milwaukee County Jail and House of Correction that is modeled on a 2013 state law.

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In The News

Urban Milwaukee: Sheriff Projects $3.9 Million Overtime Deficit


In April, the Milwaukee County Board passed an ordinance that requires county departments projecting a budget deficit or overtime budget deficit to come before the board with a report and a plan to remediate it.

JS Online: Bike Trails Ordinance Fails To Pass Milwaukee County Board


Milwaukee County Parks will not have to get approval from the Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors to make changes to bike trails in the county after an ordinance failed to pass the board Thursday on an 8-10 vote.

JS Online: Milwaukee’s Lindbergh Park May Be Getting A New Name


Lindbergh Park was due for a name change. The park was named for pilot Charles Lindbergh, best known for making the first solo, nonstop flight between New York City and Paris. But he also blamed U.S. involvement in World War II on Jewish people, claiming they were misleading the American public as to the severity of Nazi Germany.

Urban Milwaukee: Board Rejoins WI Counties Association


After extensive deliberation, the Milwaukee County Board has voted to release funds to the Wisconsin Counties Association (WCA). The WCA, is a lobbying and consulting organization for counties in the state. Lobbying state government on behalf of counties is a huge part of what it does.

Shepherd Express: Juneteenth Flag Raised in Atkinson Triangle Park


In a small ceremony on the morning of June 14, local leaders raised the Juneteenth flag at Atkinson Triangle Park (936 W. Atkinson Ave.). Mayor Tom Barrett joined in the ceremony put on by Xmen United LLC, We Are One SEC and the NAACP State Conference.

Urban Milwaukee: County Supervisors Back $1 Pot Penalty


The Milwaukee County penalty for marijuana possession would drop from up to $500 to $1, under a proposal introduced by a group of county supervisors. “In achieving racial equity, disparities in the criminal justice system, including marijuana and paraphernalia possession laws, must be eradicated,” the resolution said.

Urban Milwaukee: Board’s Bike Trails Resolution Fails


A controversial change to the way Milwaukee County Parks manages bike trails was narrowly voted down Thursday by the Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors. The proposed legislation would have given the board the final approval of any major alterations made to bike trails in Milwaukee County.

Urban Milwaukee: Does the Wisconsin Counties Association Help Milwaukee?


Members of the Milwaukee County Board held a lengthy debate Thursday concerning whether they should remain members of the Wisconsin Counties Association (WCA). This association is an organization that is meant to represent and advocate for all 72 counties at the state level for legislative agendas and policies that meet the interests of county governments.

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