Tadd Johnson appointed to U of M Board of Regents

Minnesota’s 8th Congressional District once again has representation on the University of Minnesota’s Board of Regents. Governor Walz appointed Tadd Johnson to the Board Wednesday.

Regent Johnson is filling a vacancy for Regent David McMillan, who resigned from the role. McMillan was appointed Wednesday to a two-year role as interim chancellor at UMD.

"I am proud to appoint Regent Tadd Johnson – the first Native person ever appointed to this board," said Governor Walz. "With a background in leadership, education, and deep understanding of government on all levels, he brings a wealth of higher education expertise to this group."

"Regent Tadd Johnson will give a voice to the many Native students who have been underrepresented for too long," said Lieutenant Governor Flanagan. "This historic appointment is made possible by the continued advocacy from tribes, community members, and leaders across the state to see representation at every level. As a University of Minnesota alum, I couldn’t be more proud of this appointment."

"I am honored to be appointed as a Regent to the University of Minnesota, and thank Governor Walz for his confidence in my ability to serve the entire Eighth Congressional District," said Regent Tadd Johnson. "My father was an auto mechanic from Ely with a high school diploma who worked in the mines and my mother was a Native American whose dream of graduating from the University in the 1940’s was cut short because there was no help for Native Americans. As a retired professor, I have first-hand knowledge of the struggles students face on a day-to-day basis, along with the faculty and staff who are devoted to teaching and nurturing them during their educational journey. I want to speak for the voices that are not heard often enough by the Regents; the students, the educators, Native Americans, rural Minnesotans and the working class. That’s where I come from and that’s who I am."

Johnson recently retired from the University of Minnesota system after serving as the first Senior Director of American Indian Tribal Nations Relations for the University of Minnesota, a full Professor, and the Director of Graduate Studies for the University of Minnesota – Duluth’s Department of American Indian Studies. He is currently serving as a senior advisor on government affairs for the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe Indians. An enrolled member of the Bois Forte Band of Chippewa, Johnson is a licensed attorney and graduate of the University of Minnesota Law School.