Darius Johnson

Darius A. Johnson became chair of the MCV Foundation Board of Trustees in July. Photo: Tyler Trumbo, MCV Foundation

Darius Johnson: New MCV Foundation Board Chair

A health system as vast as VCU Health is complex and daunting, with many moving parts.

Yet people are at its heart and keeping that simple truth in mind is a key part of what Darius A. Johnson brings to the table as the new chair of the MCV Foundation Board of Trustees.

It’s important that we have representation on our board that has some connection to all communities because we do serve all communities.

Darius A. Johnson, Chair, MCV Foundation Board of Trustees

Johnson became chair in July following a term as chair-elect and previous service as the treasurer. He’s been a trustee since 2013 and has served on various committees, including finance and audit, investment and governance.

“The role of the foundation is to be a good steward of the resources raised for the MCV Campus and to have the right people in place to be able to do that in a responsible manner,” Johnson said. “VCU Health touches many people right here in Richmond, but also globally, and we have a tremendous duty, on behalf of those who contribute, to instill and maintain confidence in the organization to ultimately support healthy outcomes for all patients.”

darius johnson
Darius Johnson and his wife Monique Johnson, Ph.D., at the 2022 MCV Foundation Annual Awards Dinner and Reception. Photo: Chris Ijams

Johnson, who was born in Richmond but grew up in New Jersey, said he is honored to lead a board that always keeps its stewardship mission at the forefront.

“We have a dedicated, accomplished board who can come together and debate in a healthy way and deliberate on issues that are really important and really forward-thinking in terms of making sure the foundation is sustainable for the long term,” he said.  

Johnson is continually impressed by the efforts of VCU Health to reach deep into the community. He noted the medical-legal partnership program, known as MLP at VCU Health, which offers free civil legal aid to low-income patients who have historically faced barriers to health.   

“There are just so many ways that we illustrate that we’re open to everybody,” he said. “It’s important that we have representation on our board that has some connection to all communities because we do serve all communities.”

Johnson is no stranger to VCU Health. On a personal note, he recalled a family member who was treated in the ICU for a gunshot wound, calling the emergency room staff “phenomenal.”

“We talk about the grateful patients— I have several friends who’ve shared with me their stories,” he said. “While those stories can send chills down your spine, they also give the confidence of our ‘why,’ that what we’re doing is the right thing.”

Johnson said he will continue working with the Board and staff in leading the upward trajectory of the foundation’s growing endowment and impact on campus, as a means of reaching as many patients and their families as possible.

“There are a lot of moving pieces but at the end of the day, underlying it all is people,” Johnson said. “As long as we are focused on people, we’ll be successful.”