Meet the ASOSU lobbyists: Candalynn Johnson

Candalynn Johnson, Isamar Chávez and Eric George stand outside of the Longworth House Office Building in Washington D.C. The group met with a legislative aid for Rep. Earl Blumenauer on Wednesday to discuss issues around undocumented students’ rights and Pell Grants. 

Riley Youngman, Editor-in-Chief

Candalynn Johnson

  • Pronouns: She, Her, Hers
  • Year: 4th
  • Major: Political Science
  • Title: Executive Director of Government Relations

After graduating from Sweet Home High School, Johnson enrolled at Linn-Benton Community College. It was here that she found her passion for student government and advocating on behalf of student-related issues. After two years at LBCC, Johnson transferred to OSU. She currently works for ASOSU as the executive director of government relations.

Johnson has been in student government for three years both at LBCC and OSU. During her time at LBCC, she started as an event coordinator and volunteering for the VoteORVote campaign and served as the student body president in her second year. She also sat as the student representative on the Board of Education. Since then she has also worked with the Oregon Student Association as a Board of Directors member and now sits as the vice chair.

“I enjoy lobbying and advocating for student issues and the advancement of education policy,” Johnson said

Lobbying is nothing new for Johnson either.

“I have lobbied during two long legislative sessions and the short session last year for more funding for higher education, protecting the Oregon Opportunity Grant, mental health services for students, cultural competency, student veteran priority registration, and a bill that allowed student governments more access to places like residence halls in order to register students to vote,” Johnson said.

She has also organized around expanding open educational resources and fighting tuition increases. Although most of her work has been done in Oregon, Johnson is excited to be able to go to the capitol to further her advocacy work.

“The capitol is a totally different experience than lobbying in Salem and it is a great opportunity to see what working in D.C looks like,” Johnson said. “I also really love just exploring our nation’s capitol and getting the opportunity to go to the museums and the monuments.”

This is Johnson’s second lobby trip. After going last year, Johnson was selected for the lobby trip again this year and helped lead the team in D.C. In addition to taking a leadership role on this trip, she was also able to visit all the monuments she missed last year.

“I am the most passionate about protecting the Pell Grant or any other kind of need-based funding for students, sexual assault prevention and survivor protection policies, mental health policy and student veteran services,” Johnson said.

Johnson was in the sub-lobby group with Eric George and Isamar Chávez.