Derek Johnson photographed at the Peace Palace (UN Headquarters) in Geneva
Derek Johnson is the Executive Director of the Global Zero, a global initiative for nuclear disarmament powered by an eminent group of 300 world leaders and luminaries. Johnson is a creative strategist working at the intersection of catalytic advocacy, foreign policy and social change, and this is why we’ve added him to our Celebrities Who Give “Charitable Influencers” List.
Derek has spent the last 8 years positioning Global Zero as a highly credible source of policy analysis and thought leadership, a trusted intermediary among nuclear-armed states, and a provocative advocacy operation in key regions. He has a knack for identifying strategic opportunities and the right tactics that can push the message into the mainstream in order to shine a spotlight or apply pressure. In addition to developing organizational strategy, overseeing day-to-day operations, and leading fundraising efforts, Derek also spearheads special projects — from coordinating sensitive track-1.5 initiatives to producing viral and award-winning creative content.
Derek Johnson at the Global Zero International Summit hosted by the at Ronald Reagan Presidential Library
Before taking the helm at Global Zero, Derek worked to advance interfaith dialogue and cooperation on humanitarian issues at the Council for a Parliament of the World’s Religions and helped organize its flagship convening in Melbourne, Australia. He also worked to enhance access to justice, human rights and rule of law at JUSTICE, the British section of the International Commission of Jurists in London, and worked as an attorney for several years in Boston.
Derek is a graduate of Cornell College and Boston College Law School. He is also a member of the Munich Young Leaders group of rising experts in foreign and security policy, jointly organized by Körber Foundation and the Munich Security Conference; the European Young Leaders group organized by Friends of Europe; and a Nuclear Security Innovation Fellow at N Square Collaborative.