Rep. Dusty Johnson Named Democracy Awards Winner

Rep. Dusty Johnson Named Democracy Awards Winner
Congressional Management Foundation Recognizes Rep. Johnson for Outstanding Achievement

WASHINGTON, D.C., August 16, 2021 – The Congressional Management Foundation (CMF) today announced that Rep. Dusty Johnson is a winner of a Democracy Award, CMF’s honor recognizing non-legislative achievement and performance in congressional offices. Rep. Johnson was selected for outstanding achievement for the category of Transparency and Accountability. The Transparency and Accountability category recognizes offices that provide clear and relevant information on their work and publicly acknowledge metrics for that performance.

“As a Democracy Award winner, Rep. Johnson’s office is clearly one of the best in Congress,” said Bradford Fitch, President and CEO of the Congressional Management Foundation. “This designation demonstrates that Rep. Johnson has made a significant commitment to being the best public servant for his constituents in South Dakota. Rep. Johnson and his staff are to be congratulated for not only being a model for his colleagues in Congress, but for helping to restore trust and faith that our democratic institutions can work,” he said.

Eight House and Senate offices were honored as winners in four categories: Constituent Service; Innovation and Modernization; Transparency and Accountability; and “Life in Congress”-Workplace Environment. Representative and Senate personal offices nominated themselves using an online questionnaire for the four office categories. CMF followed up with offices as necessary to gather documentation and assess the office’s adherence to the established criteria. The winners were selected by a selection committee primarily comprised of former Members of Congress and congressional staff. The winners will be honored at a ceremony to be held in Washington, D.C. in the fall.

Details on the process and the history of the Democracy Awards can be found here: 

CMF included the following reasons for selecting Rep. Johnson for an award:

“Priding itself as the “most accessible House office in South Dakota,” Rep. Dusty Johnson’s (R-SD) office responds to every inquiry from constituents, typically holds two telephone town halls per month and more than a dozen in person per year, and takes polls during town halls on issues and after tough votes, ensuring the results are published to constituents. During the pandemic, the office developed “Drive-Thru Dusty Town Halls” as a safe alternative to meet with constituents during COVID-19. After advertising in local newspapers that Rep. Johnson was going to be hosting a socially distanced town hall, constituents would “drive-thru” and talk to him in a parking lot for as long as they needed. The office was able to reach dozens of constituents in a safe manner during the pandemic.” 

In addition to the eight offices selected for the 2021 awards, CMF this year is giving out a Special Democracy Award to the non-partisan floor staff of the US House and Senate for their courage and service to the Congress and the nation on January 6th. “These men and women were the stewards of democracy when we needed them most,” Fitch said. “Most Americans never even notice their work. And yet, on January 6, 2021 they played crucial roles well beyond what was expected of them, displaying professionalism, resolution, and patriotism to help maintain our system of government,” he said.

Founded in 1977, the Congressional Management Foundation (CMF) is a 501(c)(3) nonpartisan nonprofit whose mission is to build trust and effectiveness in Congress. It advances its mission by enhancing the performance of the institution, legislators and their staffs through research-based education and training, and by strengthening the bridge and understanding between Congress and the People it serves.

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