ACT Rochester Executive Director Retiring after 12 YearsMay 23, 2022
Ann Johnson, who has branded and led ACT Rochester for more than 12 years, will retire in July 2022.
She will host her final and 10th annual ACT Rochester Report Card Event on June 9at Rochester Museum & Science Center’s Eisenhart Auditorium. At these events, ACT shares analyses of the well-being of our nine-county region, individual counties, and larger cities.
As executive director, Johnson has nurtured and steered the remarkable growth of ACT Rochester from an idea to a household name. This community indicators project has become a trusted website (www.ACTRochester.org) and data resource for the nine-county greater Rochester region, helping inform and change local problem-solving and decision-making. ACT Rochester’s cutting-edge analysis and research reports have focused community attention on racial disparities, poverty, health, and other critical issues.
Members of the International Community Indicators Consortium applauded ACT Rochester’s website structure and its ease of use. In 2015, the Consortium recognized ACT Rochester with its annual Impact Award.
“Ann Johnson is a unique, mission-driven person who has developed ACT to shine a light on critical community issues in a way that citizens can understand and be motivated to become involved in positive change,” said Tom Argust, chair of ACT Rochester’s advisory committee.
ACT Rochester, an initiative of Rochester Area Community Foundation, was launched in 2009 by the Community Foundation in collaboration with United Way of Greater Rochester and the Finger Lakes.
“Ann Johnson made sure that ACT Rochester was easy to use, with credible, timely and independent information on the state of our region,” said Jennifer Leonard, president and CEO of the Community Foundation. “But Ann also focused on the broader goal of engaging local leaders and residents in learning about critical issues, then connecting with each other to create a better community. That will be her real legacy.”
Johnson, a resident of Pittsford, has been active in the community on many fronts, building and leveraging relationships to drive positive change. Promoting community dialogues, Johnson was one of the catalysts to launch the original Rochester Public Library’s Conversations on Race series throughout Monroe County. Johnson established and coordinated five Facing Race, Embracing Equity (FR=EE) action and change workgroups that developed community goals.
Johnson has been active with the Data and Evaluation Committee of the Rochester-Monroe Anti-Poverty Initiative, which was established after the Community Foundation and ACT Rochester released in-depth reports on poverty in the region in December 2013 and a follow-up in January 2015.
Seeing a need to provide community members with a deeper understanding of poverty, Johnson also piloted a poverty simulation for participants to “walk in someone else’s shoes.” A Community Foundation grant then helped Coordinated Care Services, Inc. build capacity to run these simulations locally and nationally.
Earlier in her career, Johnson held multiple leadership positions with IBM. She was then appointed to direct West Virginia’s Office of Community and Economic Development. After moving to Rochester in 1993, she worked in senior management positions at Xerox Corp. and Xerox Capital Services, a Xerox/GE joint venture.
About ACT Rochester
Launched in 2009, ACT Rochester’s purpose is to change the culture of community problem-solving and associated decision-making through the use of credible, independent and timely data. ACT shines a light on critical issues our entire community should understand. A community indicators program of Rochester Area Community Foundation, ACT Rochester provides an objective assessment of the nine-county region’s performance on key indicators of well-being. www.ACTRochester.org is a “public utility” and creates a “one-stop shop” for data and analysis, with more than 100 indicators as well as links to hundreds of our community’s initiatives and resources.
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