Barbara K. Johnson Receives Special Economic Development Designation

​New Orleans, LA-based Leader Recognized for Exceptional Contributions through Service Related to the Practice of Economic Development

Barbara K. Johnson, Principal at The Johnson Group, was awarded with Fellow Member status by the International Economic Development Council (IEDC) for attaining unusual stature in the field of economic development and closely related disciplines. 

"The term 'unusual stature' characterizes a member's substantial contributions to the profession through service to IEDC and/or academic ventures directly related to the practice of economic development," said William C. Sproull, IEDC chair. "Ms. Johnson serves as a premier example of one who has made just such contributions and we are proud to have bestowed Fellow Member status upon her."

Barbara Johnson is Principal of The Johnson Group, a consulting firm, headquartered in New Orleans, Louisiana that builds collaborative partnerships to drive positive, measurable change in communities in the areas of organizational performance, neighborhood revitalization and resiliency and market-driven workforce solutions. With over 20 years as a leader and practitioner, Barbara has held executive positions in economic and community development that have led community change in the New Orleans Region, including the Greater New Orleans, Inc., The Downtown Development District, the University of New Orleans and the Bureau of Governmental Research. The firm brings an extensive network of relationships in economic development, business, university, philanthropic, and government sectors at the local, state and national levels. 

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Her career in urban revitalization includes an extensive track record in: (1) leading business recovery and resiliency strategies in communities hard hit by disaster and economic decline; (2) forging solutions to retain, attract and develop talent in communities; (3) building ecosystems of support for small business and entrepreneurs; and, (4) facilitating board leadership strategies to improve organizational performance, capacity and collaboration. Clients of The Johnson Group include economic development organizations, private corporations, utilities, professional associations and community-based organizations.

Barbara holds a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from the University of New Orleans and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.  She has served in leadership roles in IEDC for the past 20 years on the IEDC Board, External Relations Committee Chair, Governance Committee, Conference Committees, and as a presenter at numerous IEDC conferences.


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About the International Economic Development Council

The International Economic Development Council (IEDC) is a non-profit membership organization serving economic developers. With more than 4,400 members, IEDC is the largest organization of its kind. Economic developers promote economic well-being and quality of life for their communities, by creating, retaining and expanding jobs that facilitate growth, enhance wealth and provide a stable tax base.  From public to private, rural to urban, and local to international, IEDC’s members are engaged in the full range of economic development experience. Given the breadth of economic development work, our members are employed in a wide variety of settings including local, state, provincial and federal governments, public private partnerships, chambers of commerce, universities and a variety of other institutions. When we succeed, our members create high-quality jobs, develop vibrant communities, and improve the quality of life in their regions.

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