Johnny Jenkins, Chief of Program Strategies
Johnny Jenkins has twenty-five years of experience in grassroots community engagement and professional non-profit experience. His talents have been used to support mission-driven efforts across movements ranging from animal welfare and LGBTQ+ equality to racial equity, diversity and inclusion. He has had had the opportunity to provide leadership as an organizer, a non-profit board and program director, and a multi-million-dollar grant portfolio manager. As an experienced strategic grant-maker, Johnny has led philanthropic initiatives that support racial and economic Justice while also advancing social justice inclusive of sexual orientation and gender identity. Recently, he served as the adoption grants manager responsible for PetSmart Charities’ U.S. East Region to support shelters and rescues in finding homes for homeless pets.
Mr. Jenkins holds a B.A. in Business Administration from Western Michigan University, and is currently pursuing a graduate level degree from Arizona State University. His research interest includes organizing strategies, coalition-building, cooperative economics, leadership development (community wisdom), racial equity and social justice. He draws from lived experiences to engage people and communities to promote equity and access to opportunities that improve the quality of life for marginalized families and their pets.
Johnny has an extensive record of service in the LGBTQ+ and Detroit communities which has resulted in multiple community awards. In addition to his many community accomplishments, Johnny is also an accomplished spoken word artist who has produced and served as Slam Master for two national Detroit Poetry Slam Teams. In addition, he is a proud co-founder and former producer of one the oldest Black LGBT pride celebrations in North America – Detroit’s Hotter Than July (1996) which continues to operate today.
He is grateful for the opportunity to share his lived experiences and expertise to increase racial equity, diversity and inclusion in animal welfare. This is shared through his service as Co-Lead of PetSmart Charities’ Racial Equity Advisory, Steering Committee Member of PetSmart’s MOSAIC Associate Resource Group, Vice President of PetSmart’s Pride At Work (PAW) Associate Resource Group, and as a Co-Chair of The Association for Animal Welfare Advancement (AAWA) DEI Committee.