Philip W. Johnston is the President and Founder of the successful communications and public affairs consulting firm, Johnston Associates, LLC. Phil has more than 30 years of experience in the public sector, including serving in the Massachusetts Legislature, state Executive branch and the federal Cabinet. This experience in both the state and federal government gives Phil first-hand expertise in the drafting, interpretation and execution of legislation and executive orders.
From 1984 to 1991, Phil served as Secretary of Human Services in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts under Governor Michael Dukakis. Just prior to his appointment by Governor Dukakis, Phil had begun his fifth consecutive term as a State Representative from the Fourth Plymouth district of Massachusetts. Phil had been the Executive Director of the Robert F. Kennedy Memorial in Washington, D.C., an institution dedicated to improving social justice and human rights, when in 1992, he was appointed by President Clinton to serve as the New England Administrator for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. He served in that role until 1996 when he became a Democratic candidate for the US Congress in the 10th District of Massachusetts. Beginning in 2000, he was twice elected Chair of the Massachusetts Democratic Party.
As a Board Trustee of the University of Massachusetts, Phil chaired the University of Massachusetts Medical School Search Committee for Chancellorship. He most recently served as Search Committee Chair of the University of Massachusetts Amherst Chancellorship. In June 2013, Phil was elected Chairman of the University of Massachusetts Building Authority Board of Directors.
In addition to serving on the Board of the University of Massachusetts, Phil is the Chair of the Board of the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation and the Massachusetts Health Policy Forum. He also sits on the Boards of the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts, the Massachusetts Medicaid Policy Institute, the Carroll Center for the Blind, and the Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt Institute. In 2012, Phil was appointed to the Advisory Board of the Taubman Center for State and Local Government at the Harvard Kennedy School. He is also the Founder of the Robert F. Kennedy Children’s Action Corps, one of the top juvenile justice and social services agencies in the country.
In addition to holding several honorary degrees, Phil received a Bachelor of Arts Degree from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and a Master of Arts Degree from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.