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John M. Agrey Award
2018 Recipient

Mark Johnson

Johnson is a native of Minneapolis and graduated from the University of North Dakota in 1971 with a degree in public administration and business. He did his graduate work in planning at NDSU and served as a graduate research assistant for UGPTI. Johnson worked as a planner and in management in private engineering firms, state and local government, and regional associations before being hired as executive director of the North Dakota Association of Counties (NDACo) in 1983. He retired from this position in March 2018. While with NDACo, Mark was instrumental in coordinating a number of innovative programs that benefit counties, such as juvenile justice, insurance pools, risk management and computer networking. He played a major role in bringing together groups that helped counties to more effectively do their job. Johnson also directed a diverse staff in many areas important to county and state government. He brought strong governance principles to the NDACo Board of Directors to help create a visionary organization. His work in the legislative arena provided strong lobbying on behalf of the counties. He also served as the president of NDACo Resources Group, a for-profit subsidiary of the NDACo.

Johnson is a Certified Association Executive and an active member of the American Society of Association Executives. His noteworthy honors include the Top 25 Doers, Dreamers, and Drivers Award from Government Technology Magazine in 2004 and the North Dakota Leadership Award in 1992. Mark served on several national committees, including the National Association of Counties (NACo) Finance Committee and Information Technology Committee, the Public Technology, Inc. (PTI) Board of Directors, and the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture’s eGovernment Advisory Council.

Mark and his wife, Charlene, live in Bismarck.

NDSU Dept 2880P.O. Box 6050Fargo, ND 58108-6050