Mrs. Tonja Johnson
Some people stand idly on the sidelines and watch life go by while others choose to participate in it and make a difference. Tonja Johnson chose the latter and decided a long time ago to use her voice, talents, creativity, innovation, and perseverance to positively implement change.
Diagnosed with vitiligo in 2014 and finding it extremely challenging to find information and access local support within the state of Florida, Mrs. Johnson founded Beautifully Unblemished Support Group, Incorporated (www.beautifullyunblemished.com) in 2017. Beautifully Unblemished Support Group, Inc. is a non-profit organization providing various types of support, including social connectivity, and plethora of information to those living with the noncontagious skin disease.
Her passion and drive are inspired by her own experiences dealing with vitiligo and learning to embrace the physical changes she faces daily. As a dark-skinned African American kid, she had been teased for having dark skin. Now, as an adult, she is losing the very skin she had worked so hard to love. Therefore, a key mission of Beautifully Unblemished Support Group, Incorporated is to empower individuals to love the skin they are in and to diminish the stigma others place upon those living with vitiligo.
Equipped professionally with an extensive background in the public health service sector, Johnson diligently advocates vitiligo awareness within the state of Florida by educating local and state governmental bodies including mayors, commissioners, and state congressmen and senators. In addition, she also engages with school officials and community activists.
In an effort to raise awareness with wider audiences and inspire those with vitiligo, Mrs. Johnson regularly uses outreaches and various media footprints. She has been featured in local national publications such as the National Institute of Health (NIH) Winter Edition and Central Florida Health News and recently a contributing author in Sistersletter (an AARP publication), SELF Magazine Health and Wellness, and an upcoming co-author in the Journal of Dermatology Nurses Association. She also frequently appears as an advocate on national television channels.
In addition, Johnson actively serves as a member of the International Alliance of Dermatology Patient Organization (Global Skin), Coalition of Skin Diseases, Vitfriends, Global Vitiligo Foundation, and a board member for Building Strong Families, Incorporated.
Today, Tonja Johnson is married, has one daughter, and currently resides in Lakeland, Florida. In her spare time, she enjoys singing praise and worship, interior decorating, and traveling.
Personal Motto: “My spots don’t define me because I am altogether beautiful, and there is no flaw in me.”