Michael Kotutwa Johnson, PhD

Program Officer

Dr. Michael Kotutwa Johnson, a member of the Hopi Tribe in Northern Arizona, serves as Program Officer.

Dr. Johnson is a traditional Hopi farmer and practitioner and has given extensive lectures on the topic of Hopi dryland farming – a practice of his people for over two millennia – throughout his academic and professional career. He is also very familiar with conventional agriculture, having received his Bachelor of Science degree in agriculture from Cornell University in Ithaca, NY.

Some of Dr. Johnson’s previous work experience involved agriculture and land related issues at First Nations Development Institute (FNDI) and the Indian Land Tenure Foundation (ITLF). He holds a Master of Public Policy degree from Pepperdine University. Before receiving his Ph.D. in Natural Resources at the University of Arizona, Dr. Johnson was a Natural Resource District Conservationist assigned to the Hopi Reservation for the Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).

A few of his published works include “Barriers to PES programs in Indigenous communities: A lesson in land tenure insecurity from the Hopi Indian reservation” published in Ecosystem Services and “Hopi People of the Land: Sustainable Agriculture on the Hopi Reservation” created for the University of Nevada Cooperative Extension. Dr. Johnson was an Alford P. Sloan Foundation scholar and American Indian Graduate Center STEM awardee while attending the University of Arizona.