Demnlus Johnson III grew up in the Iron Triangle before attending Howard University, then returning to Richmond to serve our community.
As Chair of Richmond’s Economic Development Commission; a community worker at Richmond High School; and a member of the Citizens Police Review Commission, Demnlus works every day to help our youth, build stronger police community relations, and revitalize our community without leaving anyone behind.
Demnlus is working to revitalize Richmond’s economy, supporting small businesses, recruiting new industries and jobs, preparing local residents for those jobs, and helping community members become successful entrepreneurs.
On the Citizens Police Review Commission, Demnlus works to keep Richmond safe and improve the police-community relations by fighting for greater accountability, and promoting collaboration between community members, law enforcement and local nonprofits.
Demnlus is well known as an advocate and resource for Richmond residents who is always looking to improve upon progress while keeping Richmond safe and affordable.
I was born at Brookside Hospital. My mother is an armor truck driver for Brinks and my father was a construction worker. Growing up in the Iron Triangle, I experienced firsthand how important economic opportunity and community engagement are for the success of community and how their absence is detrimental to people’s lives. Families like mine had owned their homes since the end of WWII and helped create a tight-knit community in that period. Small businesses like Cotwright corner store and La Perla’s Restaurant contributed to community identity as well as nutrition. It was the time I spent in the Nevin Community Center playing billiards where I learned the people’s history of Richmond, became empowered through education that would allow me to compete in any arena, and developed a deep and abiding adoration for my hometown.
Upon graduating from Howard University, I returned to Richmond to serve my community, and I am currently the youngest member and Vice Chair of the Economic Development Commission, through which I work with the City Manager’s Office to create community renewal without removal. As a Community Worker at Richmond High School, I partner with various community organizations to eliminate barriers in academic and social success for our youth. Through serving as Town Hall Moderator for Ceasefire, I work to better the relationship between Richmond police and civilians through working to build respect, trust, and understanding.
I want to join the Richmond City Council to continue moving Richmond forward in a manner that respects its citizens and heritage. I understand that safe streets, good schools, and economic opportunity will continue to advance the City of Richmond. I know that affordable housing and the Fight for Fifteen are necessary for immediate survival. I also know that issues in wealth, economics, education, and social mobility are systemic and if we are to truly transcend them we must aggressively attack them at their root and nourish fertile ground in Richmond. I understand that community engagement and economic opportunity are prerequisites and catalysts to closing those gaps.
As a member of Richmond City Council, I would lean on my experience working in diverse capacities on behalf of the city I love. The people of Richmond need someone who is a product of Richmond’s history, community, and policies to serve on our City Council with a direct and strategic focus for overcoming our systemic issues. I will advocate on the peoples’ behalf so that no one is left behind or pushed out. Instead I will fight to ensure city opportunities and priorities are conducive to the well-being of all Richmond citizens. It’s going to take someone with a new approach steeped in Richmond community values to overcome enduring challenges. Richmond has the unique opportunity to serve as a national model for sustainable, equitable community building in the 21st century and beyond. I believe I have the experience, passion, and vision to move Richmond further into an equitable future for all.