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Bailey-Johnson ’99 to Lead UMN Morris Alumni Association

Erika Bailey-Johnson standing at a podium, smiling. The podium reads "University of Minnesota"
Jenna Ray
Publication date: 
March 3, 2020
  • Bailey-Johnson is sustainability director at Bemidji State University.
  • A former biology major and Cougar volleyball player, she is a member of the Cougar Hall of Fame.
  • An enrolled member of the Red Lake Band of Ojibwe, she succeeds Dillon McBrady '13.

Erika Bailey-Johnson '99 is the next University of Minnesota Morris Alumni Association (UMMAA) Board of Directors president. The former biology major and Cougar Hall of Famer is proud to lead her alumni association in service to her alma mater.

"I am honored to take on the role of UMMAA President for this next year," she writes. "I have so much gratitude for the place and people; one that I can never fully reciprocate."


As a UMN Morris student, Bailey-Johnson played volleyball for the Cougars. Today she is the first sustainability director at Bemidji State University. She also was appointed coordinator of the People and the Environment academic program in 2016 and teaches each semester.

Bailey-Johnson holds a bachelor of arts in biology from UMN Morris and a master's degree in environmental studies from BSU. Her background is in science teaching—she and her husband taught for two years in Mexico and three years in Kuwait before returning to northern Minnesota.


In 2014 Bailey-Johnson was named one of Prairie Business Magazine's 40 under 40 regional business professionals, and in 2015 as one of the top 40 under 40 professionals in the Midwest working to accelerate America's transition to a clean energy economy by Midwest Energy News. She served on Governor Dayton's Committee on Pollinator Protection from 2016 to 2018.

Bailey-Johnson is on the board for Happy Dancing Turtle in Pine River. She is a founding member of the City of Bemidji Sustainability Committee and recently became Director of the Niizhoo-gwayakochigewin project to integrate an Indigenous lens into campus sustainability work and academic programs and the Co-PI of Endazhi-manidoowaadak to work on race relations in her community. Her first book project was recently published, a bilingual Ojibwe/English children's book to connect children to the Ojibwe language and Mother Earth.

Bailey-Johnson is an enrolled member of the Red Lake Band of Ojibwe.


Bailey-Johnson succeeds Dillon McBrady '13, who will continue to serve the board as immediate past president. To learn more about the UMMAA and its board of directors, visit

Pictured: Bailey-Johnson at the Cougar Hall of Fame award ceremony, September 2019