Zenani Johnson
Special Projects and Governmental Affairs, Escambia County
Zenani Johnson is a recent graduate of the University of West Florida (UWF) and was born and raised in Tallahassee. At UWF, Zenani demonstrated her advocacy, service, and commitment to excellence by serving in numerous capacities including: Student Body Vice President, Sophomore Senator, Freshman Committee Member, Historic Trust Board and UWF Board of Trustees. In her sophomore year, she founded the Emergency Housing Assistance program that provides free housing for college students experiencing homelessness. Because of the program’s success, this model has been replicated at several universities across the state. She was also selected by the UWF School of Business, Center for Entrepreneurship to serve as the Student Entrepreneur in Residence because of her unique ability to connect with students, business, and community leaders. During her senior year, she was elected by her peers as the first African American, Student Body President in the university’s history. In that same year she was also elected Chair of the Florida Student Association, which made her the most powerful student voice in Florida, as the student representative on the Florida Board of Governors. As a Governor, she advocated for the needs of nearly 400,000 students across the state in the areas of housing, food insecurity and textbook affordability. Zenani continues to advocate for students nationwide as a Florida College Access Network steering committee member. She has been recognized nationally for her commitment to servant leadership, advocacy and innovation. A few of her recognitions and awards include the United States Presidential Volunteer Service Award, the Congressional Award, the Senator Bob Graham Youth Service award, and the Governor’s Champion of Service Award. Zenani has also received leadership awards from UWF, Pensacola’s Junior League, and the Girl Scouts Council of the Florida Panhandle Visionary award. She has been featured on numerous occasions in print, radio, and magazines. Zenani is currently the Special Projects and Governmental Affairs Coordinator for Escambia County Government and pursuing a master’s degree from Florida State University.