Randy Johnson served as the Chair of the Hennepin County Board of Commissioners from 1978 to 2017. He ran unopposed in the last three elections. He held the position of President of the National Association of Counties (NACo) in 1997 and 1998. As President, the Honorable Randy Johnson stressed the importance of counties becoming more digital, global, and sustainable. As part of his efforts at NACo, he accepted the first invitation ever offered by the Chinese Government to lead a delegation of locally elected county officials to the People's Republic of China. He also co-chaired the first meeting of NACo's historical partnership with the U.S. Conference of Mayors in establishing the Joint Center for Sustainable Development.
His leadership on environmental issues in Hennepin county has made Commissioner Johnson a national authority on the subject. He has helped the county establish a comprehensive recycling and integrated solid waste management program that is consistently cited as one of the best in the nation. He has addressed international conferences at the U.N. and elsewhere on such issues as alternative fuels, climate change, and new technology implementation. Before his election to the Commission, Randy was appointed as the Legislative Assistant to Minnesota’s first Commissioner of Human Rights. He also worked in the legal department of the National Coal Board in London, England and was an associate in the Faegre and Benson law firm in Minneapolis. In 1977, the Federal Election Commission appointed him Assistant General Counsel.
In addition to his work on the Hennepin Board, Commissioner Johnson currently serves on the Federal Communications Commission State and Local Government Advisory Committee, the Federal Geographic Data Committee, Housing and Urban Development’s Community Builder’s Advisory Board, and the Urban Institute’s Assessing the New Federalism Welfare Reform Advisory Committee. He is a member of the Bloomington Chamber of Commerce, Friends of the Minnesota Valley Wildlife Refuge, and Sons of Norway. Commissioner Johnson earned his B.A. in Political Science from Macalester College and his J.D. degree cum laude from the University of Minnesota Law School in 1974, where he was a member of the law review.