DEKALB COUNTY, GA—The Rev. Cynthia Hale announced that she is endorsing Commissioner Larry Johnson in the race to become DeKalb County’s next Chief Executive Officer (CEO).
“I am proud to call Larry Johnson a friend, a leader, and now, our next DeKalb CEO. Larry is a man of impeccable character with bold plans for DeKalb County that only somebody with his skills can put into practice. His inspirational leadership is exactly what we need right now,” said Hale.
The Democratic primary election will be held on May 21, 2024.
Hale is founding and senior pastor at Ray of Hope Christian Church, which is affiliated with the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), a Protestant denomination of approximately 800,000 members in the United States and Canada. It is one of the largest faith groups founded on American soil.
As a woman of vision, Rev. Hale is revered worldwide for her leadership, integrity and compassion. Her vision and leadership led her to establish two ministries: Elah Pastoral Ministries, Inc. and the Women in Ministry Conference, Inc. Elah is a mentoring program to assist in the spiritual and practical development of pastors and para-church leaders, while the Women in Ministry Conference is a premier national conference with a focused mission to develop, coach and mentor Christian women in ministry for the 21st Century.
In 2009, Hale was appointed by President Barack Obama to serve on the President’s Commission on White House Fellowships. She also served as a member of the 2016 Platform Committee for the Democratic National Convention and delivered the Invocation at the 2016 Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia.
Her endorsement comes on the heels of Stacey Abrams’ endorsement, adding to the growing list of Democratic leaders supporting Johnson’s campaign.
“I have known Reverend Hale for decades as a woman of courage, leadership and deep faith. I am honored to have her endorsement and look forward to working with her to strengthen the future of DeKalb County,” said Johnson.
Johnson was first elected strict 3 in November of 2002. In November 2022, he was re-elected for his sixth term. He previously served as Presiding Officer for the DeKalb County Commission and currently serves as Chair of the Planning, Economic Development and Community Services Committee and as a member of the County Operations Committee.
Johnson has been a member of the National Association of Counties (NACo) since 2005. In 2017 Johnson was appointed as the Chair of NACo’s Large Urban County Caucus and In July of 2021, Johnson was installed as President of NACo.
Johnson earned his Bachelor’s of Science in Community Health from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and obtained a Master’s in Public Health from the University of Northern Colorado. He also served as the first Chair of the Health Disparities Subcommittee of the Health Steering Committee for NACo. Commissioner Johnson has been married for over 30 years and has one daughter.