Leah Johnson

Trailblazer for Women


Leah Johnson is a trailblazer who demonstrates that women - particularly women of color - are strong, determined and capable of being leaders. “I help women to see that truly making a difference starts with being yourself and being dedicated to your dreams. Only then will others see you as a person who truly makes a difference,” she says.

As the first African American editor-in-chief of UM-Dearborn’s student newspaper, The Michigan Journal, Leah brought the campus community closer together through her articles, her leadership of the paper’s staff and her positive energy and exuberance.

Leah is very involved in the local community through her internships with The Detroit Free Press, WWJ-Newsradio and BLAC Detroit Magazine. The latter opportunity combined two of her favorite things: writing and a love of African American achievements. “It brought me great honor to write about my race in such a positive way,” she says.

Leah’s ability to connect to people is recognized by the campus community. She was awarded the Student Activities Office’s Leadership Synergy Award for her commitment to, and positive impact on, student life at UM-Dearborn. The Black Student Union also acknowledged Leah’s contributions during its annual ‘Honoring Our Own’ dinner.

Being a writer and giving people the news they need couldn’t be more rewarding for Leah, who is convinced that journalism is a great public service. “Although I have a love for journalism, I don’t desire to be rich or famous. I simply want to be able to modestly support myself and get better at writing,” she says.


"What drives me and makes me push ahead even on the most challenging of days is self motivation and my determination to get the job/task done. It's an inner peace that I get when I am certain that I have accomplished a task at hand whether it's a long term goal or short term. However, I'm human. I struggle, I shed tears at times when things get overwhelming. Still, after I have released my emotions I regroup, refocus and get the job completed."