Those who used to be raised on the self-sufficient farm were among the majority in America, yet in today’s society those people and their principles are now among the minority – thus making for a very different level of trust and value among neighbors and friends.
Rep. Dan Johnson Republican of Cache County District 4 is one of those who was raised on a self-sufficient farm in Nebraska and thrived from that rural background and can still quote the Future Farmers of America Creed that formed the iron rod he held to as he was an American educator for 49 years across the USA but mainly in northern Utah. “We had some sheep, cows to milk, chicken to gather eggs; but most of all we had that FFA creedo of; ‘faith born of words not of deeds; achievements won by present and past generations – and the promise of better days through better ways’”.
Candidates.vote — How did a farm kid from Nebraska who used to milk cows, shear sheep, gather eggs and irrigate the land end up wanting to be a school teacher? And when do you think you began thinking in your life you wanted to get on the path of becoming an educator?
Rep. Johnson – Change is an amazing thing in us and when I made that change from jumping from agriculture to education it was incredible. You feel it in yourself and you know it’s something you’ve done that is time and effort that matters.
I think I was about 12 or 13 years old when I began wanting to become a teacher and ultimately it was my job for 49 years. In fact I just finished things up and in those years went from being a teacher, to a coach, to an administrator, superintendent and being involved in elementary, secondary and higher education.
Candidates.vote – There had to be a spark along the way that at some point was the catalyst that popped in your brain and directed you to being an educator; can you explain the moment?
Rep. Johnson – I know I was just a little kid who had teachers who made a difference in my life and I so admired what they did for me and watched what they did for so many of my classmates and it never seemed to changed year after year. I really, honestly admired what they did and I think that is what drives us to being looking for what we want to do in life and it did for me — they were the influencers in my life!
Candidates.vote – So how did you advancement through all of those types of educational steps take place through you 49 years of public services to America’s students Rep. Johnson?
Rep. Johnson – Well first I was obviously a teacher and then a teacher and a coach and then an athletic director and a principal by 29 all of this in Nebraska. And then I had an opportunity to see what an administrator’s job would be like in when one was offered in central Nebraska. And I worked as an administrator in the oil fields in a college town.
And then when I was 52 years old I had a chance to work in public administration in Tooele and administration in Logan with USU and travel between the two communities. It’s been very interesting to bridge the different educational communities and to now be able to use that in the legislative side of things.
Candidates.vote – So it lists you as taking in House District 4 in the state of Utah. Maybe you can explain just exactly where that is?
Rep. Johnson – It’s the vast majority of the City of Logan when you come out of Logan Canyon and the funny thing in terms of my background with education; it takes up the University of Utah when I was a teacher and an administrator. So it takes in a vast majority of the valley and a big chuck of where a major portion of the growth is taking place.
Candidates.vote – I know you and your wife, Carol, have an interesting story about how you met and the story of what you’ve been able to accomplish since that meeting. Maybe you’d like to share just a bit of that with us?
Rep. Johnson – Well, we were both married before but it was like wow; we met and things kind of came together through running! We’ve been married 30 years and had a great life together. We have each ran 50 marathons since we me.
We know what it’s like to start and finish hard things. The most exciting for us was the Boston Marathon. We ran it when there was no limit on how many could be in it and there were 30 to 40,000 in it. Now there’s 8 or 9,000 in it.
Candidates.vote – What’s yours and Carol’s secret to running a marathon Rep. Johnson?
Rep. Johnson – Stay in good shape. So many do the carb-loading. We don’t do that, we do the protein loading. A good steak and we eat nothing white.
Candidates.vote – There are so many Rep. Johnson who might look at the word “politics” in a negative way with everything going on in today’s world. What would you have to say to them?
Rep. Johnson – We need to look past the bickering. To be engaged in civics. If you don’t do it who will? Don’t leave it up to chance. Politics is local. It’s been a terrific experience and an honor to serve. Things starts right here at home.