Rep. Mike Levin Honors Community Activist and Oceanside HS Football Coach as his Constituent of the Month

August 5, 2020
Press Release

San Juan Capistrano, CA – Today, U.S. Representative Mike Levin (D-CA) announced that community leader and Oceanside High School football coach Darnell “DeeJay” Johnson is the Constituent of the Month. A resident of Vista in California’s 49th Congressional District, DeeJay is a passionate youth advocate and racial justice activist. Coach DeeJay recently organized a Black Lives Matter protest in North County San Diego and helped ensure that the demonstration remained peaceful.

See below for Rep. Levin’s statement recognizing Darnell “DeeJay” Johnson in the Congressional Record:

“Madam Speaker, it is my honor to recognize Darnell “DeeJay” Johnson, a community leader, racial justice activist and local high school football coach, as the Constituent of the Month for August. At a time when our country is reeling from racial injustice and seeking to address police brutality, Mr. Johnson and his team marched side by side to speak out against racial injustice.

“This past June, DeeJay organized a Black Lives Matter protest for marchers to walk in support of the movement in North County San Diego. During the protest, marchers raised concerns to DeeJay of a young white male in military-style gear carrying a knife and acting uneasy while walking with the group. DeeJay carefully approached the young man, and after a few minutes of defusing the situation, the 16-year-old handed over the knife from his pocket.

“We are seeing millions of Americans all over the nation demanding accountability and comprehensive reform to a system that has allowed police brutality and injustice against people of color for generations. Amidst the united uprising across the country, peaceful protesters voices are being drowned out by those seeking to dismantle the movement with unrest and violence. DeeJay’s mission is to not only inspire young people to get involved in change, but to emphasize using their voices and actions peacefully.

"With these goals in mind, the scenario that occurred with the young man was a lesson for many involved. The defused scene created a learning opportunity to display how we can all work cohesively together, and most importantly, to work towards a better and more just future for all Americans.

“I launched a Constituent of the Month program to recognize individuals who have gone above and beyond to make our region and our country a stronger place for everyone to live and thrive. As our nation and community works toward long overdue racial change and healing, voices like DeeJay’s must be lifted and heard. I am honored to recognize Mr. Johnson as my Constituent of the Month, and I thank him for being a prominent role model in amplifying racial justice in our community during a critical time of change for America.”

Representative Levin’s Constituent of the Month program recognizes outstanding North County San Diego and South Orange County Residents who have gone above and beyond to help their neighbors, give back to their community, and make the country stronger. Levin’s Constituent of the Month for July was Dr. Cheryl Anderson, founding dean for the Herbert Wertheim School of Public Health and Human Longevity Science at University of California San Diego, and the first Black female dean in the 60-year history of the campus. His June Constituent of the Month was Danielle Black Lyons, co-founder of Textured Waves and diversity activist in the surfing industry. His May Constituent of the Month was Dr. Matthew Martin, an Army veteran and local trauma surgeon who supported medical staff in NYC treat patients with Coronavirus.

To nominate a resident of the 49th District to be the Constituent of the Month, fill out this nomination form.

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