State’s top communicating super: Dr. Bernadeia Johnson




Dr. Bernadeia H. Johnson, superintendent of Minneapolis Public Schools (MPS), was honored March 16 with the District Leadership for Excellence in Communications Award, presented by the Minnesota School Public Relations Association (MinnSPRA).

The award is presented annually to one superintendent in Minnesota for outstanding leadership in school public relations and communications. The award highlights the importance of a leader’s role in implementing an effective communications program.

“Dr. Johnson exemplifies a modern-day superintendent who has been intentional in her efforts to effectively engage and communicate with the diverse stakeholders in Minneapolis,” said Brett Johnson, president of MinnSPRA.

Of the recognition, Dr. Johnson said, “I feel incredibly honored to be the recipient of this award and am grateful to MinnSPRA for its strong support of superintendents, school board members, and strategic communications professionals.”

Two of Johnson’s major communications efforts include engaging MPS’ 6,000 employees in a homeroom-style open forum and inviting thousands of families and community members to participate in Soup with the Supe, a community-wide engagement series hosted in four languages, to support the school district’s work to close the achievement gap and raise academic achievement for all students.

“I firmly believe that in order to accomplish our academic goals, leaders of school districts must engage stakeholders and build the internal culture of our schools and administrative offices,” Johnson said. “These types of efforts have to be intentional, meaningful and effective.”

— From an MPS press release