Mary C. Johns currently works as Deputy Executive Director for We The People Media, a small not-for-profit organization, and the Editor-in-Chief for Residents’ Journal, a fourteen-year-old national award winning publication produced by We The People Media, written by Chicago low-income youth and adults across the city. Mary has certification in nonprofit management from Chicago’s Northwestern Kellogg School of Management, journalism training at Columbia College, and is a board member of the Community Media Workshop.
She is one of the first-place winners of the National Society of Professional Journalists’ 1st Annual New America Award in 2005. A 2005 “Courageous Voices Award” recipient from the Jewish Council on Urban Affairs for reporting the news as it relates to the poor and the general population. A 2005 “Peter Lisagor Award” winner from the Chicago Headline Club branch of the National Society of Professional Journalists, for a media collaboration with the Chicago Reporter investigative magazine for a series of articles titled “Deadly Moves,” which was about an increase in the murder rate, as residents relocated under the Chicago Housing Authority’s Plan for Transformation.
Mary and her Residents’ Journal team received a “Studs Terkel Award” from the Community Media Workshop in 2006, and a joint recipient of the “Dr. Marjorie Stewart Joyner Award” from the Chicago Defender Charities also in 2006.