Joel K. Johnson, MEd
President and CEO Email Joel
TASC President and CEO Joel K. Johnson is an advocate for individuals and communities that are dealing with trauma, substance use disorders, mental health challenges, family disconnection, and social, racial, and economic injustice. From the front lines of clinical care to nonprofit executive leadership, he has maintained a steady focus on ensuring health, dignity, and opportunity for all.
With a multifaceted approach of program services, public policy, and community partnerships, Joel leads TASC’s efforts to address the everyday realities and structural barriers that impede people’s opportunities to thrive.
A nationally respected expert in behavioral health, Joel was elected in 2021 to the board of directors of the National Association of Addiction Treatment Providers (NAATP), and appointed to the City of Chicago Board of Health, a nine-member body that advises the mayor on public health matters. He also was named to the Cook County Equity Fund Taskforce, which advises the county board president's administration on strategic investments to address historical disparities and disinvestment in Black and Latinx communities.
Prior to becoming TASC’s top executive in March 2021, Joel served as executive vice president of Friend Health (FH), a federally qualified health center, and concurrently as president of Human Resources Development Institute (HRDI), a large, Chicago-based behavioral health service provider and subsidiary of FH. He served as HRDI’s chief administrative officer for two years before being promoted to president and CEO in 2011.
Preceding his work with HRDI, Joel served for nearly five years as chief operating officer of SOS Children’s Villages Illinois, a boutique foster care/child enrichment organization that focuses on keeping sibling groups intact during their tenure in the foster care system. Previously, he served as Midwest region director for the Child Welfare League of America; assistant child welfare director for Chicago Commons; outpatient therapist for the Drug Intervention Service Center (D.I.S.C.) Village of Tallahassee, Florida; and health educator for the Chicago Department of Health School-Based Initiative.
Joel is a member of The Economic Club of Chicago and a Life Member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., serving on several local, regional, and national committees. A native of Chicago, he earned the Chicago Defender’s Men of Excellence award in 2014. Joel is a graduate of Florida A&M University with a Bachelor of Science in business administration and Master of Education in counseling.