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Congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson 

A Living Legend  By Keith Moore, OGTV.

Congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson is the Founder and Co-Chair of the Diversity and Innovation Caucus and of the House Historically Black Colleges and Universities Caucus. She has also had the honor of serving as chairwoman of the Congressional Black Caucus during the 107th Congress, and currently co-chairs the Technology and Infrastructure Development Taskforce within the Congressional Black Caucus. In addition to these roles, she is a current member of the Congressional Task Force on Seniors.   

Congresswoman Johnson is widely recognized as one of the most effective legislators in Congress.  She is credited with originally authoring and co-authoring more than 150 bills that were passed by the House and Senate and signed into law by the President. She also has a long-standing reputation for providing excellent constituent services to the people who elected her.

CONGRESSWOMAN JOHNSON ADDS FOCUS ON DIVERSITY TO NSF AUTHORIZATION ACT 2007

As Co-Chair of Diversity and Innovation Caucus, Congresswoman Johnson has consistently played a leading role as an advocate for under-represented minorities to engage in STEM education and careers.  In 2007, Congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson successfully offered two amendments to the National Science Foundation Authorization Act (H.R. 1867) to ensure that our nation's scientific workforce is accessible to under-represented minorities.

"The first amendment required NSF to provide an annual plan for the allocation of Education and Human Resources funds each fiscal year," said Congresswoman Johnson. "This change will enable Congress to gauge how NSF plans to spend resources to improve education and diversify the science and technology workforce.  "The second amendment commissioned NSF to work with the National Academy of Sciences to produce, within one year, a report on the barriers to increasing the number of underrepresented minorities in science, technology, engineering and math. The report should also identify strategies to diversify the STEM workforce," she added.  Both amendments were accepted and added to the bill before the measure passed the Research and Science Education subcommittee back in 2007.

The bill authorizes $16.4 billion for research and related activities,  $2.8 billion for education and human resources and $787 million for major research facilities over the next three years. It also funds the teacher training initiatives in the "10,000 Teachers, 10 Million Minds," Math and Science Scholarship Act.   Moreover, H.R. 1967 established a pilot program of one-year seed grants for new investigators, encourages NSF to foster relationships between academia and industry in order to spawn U.S. competitiveness and furthers the agency's traditions of education in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields.

"The National Science Foundation is charged with achieving excellence in science, technology, engineering and mathematics education at all levels and all settings, Congresswoman Johnson said. "That includes making the best use of all our intellectual resources among all ethnicities and both genders”. As Co-Chair of the Innovation and Diversity Caucus, Congresswoman Johnson added these provisions back in 2007 so that Congress could develop evidenced-based policies to increase the scientific workforce."

 In 1986, Congresswoman Johnson was elected to the Texas State Senate, becoming the first female and first African-American from North Texas to hold the office, and currently represents a district in Dallas Texas where over 42% are Black and 34% Hispanic who live in high poverty areas. 

Black History is EVERYDAY @ www.opengovtv.com, and Congresswoman Johnson is indeed a living legend who we look to for continued leadership in the STEM Diversity movement.

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