Velvet D. Johnson currently serves as a presidential appointee in the Obama Administration at the U.S. Department of Defense, where she helps shape national policy and programs in support of cybersecurity and critical infrastructure. A well-respected political strategist, Johnson held several leadership roles on Capitol Hill prior to joining the Obama Administration. Most recently, she served as Senior Counsel to the U.S. Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee. There she provided legal advice and counsel on all aspects of homeland security, government contracting, and federal real property management.
Johnson was also appointed Counsel and Policy Adviser to the U.S. House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, where she was charged with developing the general political strategy for the Committee, with a focus on congressional investigations and departmental and executive branch oversight. Wearing several hats, Johnson has frequently been tapped to serve as counsel in the private sector, in local and national political campaigns, and with several non-profit organizations.
Johnson has been recognized for her leadership both professionally and civically. She is a Commissioner with the Maryland Commission for Women, having been appointed by Governor Martin O’Malley in 2012. As an advisory panel, the Maryland Commission for Women takes policy positions on a myriad of issues affecting the daily lives of women and their families. She has been profiled in major publications such as Politico and Roll Call, featured in Capitol Hill’s Top 40 Under 40, and is often celebrated as one of DC’s Most Influential Attorneys. Johnson graduated cum laude from the University of Richmond with a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration. She received her law degree from the University of Maryland School of Law and is licensed to practice law in Georgia and the District of Columbia.