Where are you now? Former Rams S Johnnie Johnson

In the fourth quarter of his 10-year NFL career – nine with the Rams and one with the Seattle Seahawks – former security guard Johnnie Johnson dedicated himself not only to the game, but also to what would become an important part of his life after the game.

“In the seventh year of my career, my vision was that the coaching process we used as world-class athletes would be available to all segments of society,” said Johnson, who was selected in the first round of the 1980 NFL Draft University of Texas. “From that vision World Class Coaches (WCC) was born. I shared my vision with my life coach and he suggested that I should get some business experience in a job other than soccer. I decided to go into real estate sales.”

WCC is a personal and professional coaching company. Your mission is to support and encourage people to reach their potential and improve their performance.

“My last three years as a professional footballer and six years after that, I was selling real estate (in Orange County),” said Johnson. “And one of the biggest decisions I made in my life was to become a real estate agent while I was still playing professional football. The experience I gained there enabled me to build relationships that I still benefit from today. ”Real estate website.

“I had to separate Johnnie Johnson the soccer player from Johnnie Johnson the real estate professional and it was no easy task. But understanding the needs of the client has really provided me with a great platform for what we do today.”

In addition to establishing the WCC, Johnson launched the Moving Families Initiative (MFI) program.

“It seemed like every year there were players whose families moved because of a trade or a layoff or some other transition they went through. And then when you look at the coaching, the same thing happened there.” “Said Johnson.

“The original thought and vision (of the MFI program) started when one of my friends, LeRoy Irvin, went to Detroit from the Rams. And I’ll never forget that, I asked him when he had to be there and he said, ‘Tomorrow.’ And I said, ‘What about your family?’ And he said, “Well, I don’t know. We have to find out.”

“When I knew the impact this had on his wife and these two young children, I just said, ‘One day I’ll see if I can do something to help families, and especially children, with neighborhood changes ‘Bypass schools and friends.’ “

The MFI program connects families who are moving with preferred real estate agents, school teachers, consultants, the local chamber of commerce, etc. to ensure a smooth transition for every family member.

“The work we do is through the normal processes. Extra-curricular activities, for example. One of our goals is to get every child who moves into an after-school activity organization of their choice,” said Johnson.

“We don’t care which one. It could be Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, it could be swimming, tennis, or it could be the choir, or it could be in the band. When a child moves and is engaged in that activity again, their new community, theirs new school, then that is a common basis where there are other children with similarities.

“It’s just like me as a professional soccer player. When I went to the Rams from the University of Texas, they wanted to talk about culture shock. But the only thing I had in common where I felt most comfortable was whenever I was was near me. ” Teammates and coaches. And that’s what we’re looking for with the children, where they feel comfortable in this new neighborhood and this new environment. “

Johnson continued. “We take for granted what happens to the children when they move. There are studies in which we have seen that it affects them from a social point of view. Academically, we have seen that it affects them. And even today, with social media, where people are so networked, that’s a big challenge for them.

“And it’s an even bigger challenge for parents because there are just so many things. When they move to a new city, they don’t know anyone. The most important thing these parents are saying is information that they can connect to the resources they need.

“We are able to bridge that void by building the strength of relationships not only with information, but also with relationships that allow parents to make the process easier. The children will benefit from it regardless of their age.

“The greatest satisfaction I have is helping those in need. I happened to pick an area in dire need because more than 10 million children move across the country each year. And when you think of the parents of these children, I am very pleased to know that I can bring some peace. “

Johnson’s newest business is as a writer. He and Dr. Michael E. Webber, Josey Centennial Professor of Energy Resources at the University of Texas, wrote the book together – From Athletics to Engineering: 8 Ways to Promote Diversity, Equality, and Inclusion for All.

“What made it easier after George Floyd died was that I asked him if he would be interested in co-writing the book with me,” said Johnson. “I felt we needed two voices, where I’m an athlete, an African American and he is a respected white professor. Two different backgrounds, I felt that working together would be a pretty strong message.”

What does Johnson hope readers will take away from the book published in April?

“At core, we’ve come a long way when it comes to our beliefs and habits, as well as our attitudes and expectations about the race,” he said. “And there are two parts. The constitution is very clear, and if we can create an approximation of what it means for justice for all. Equality for all.

“When we think of equality and inclusion, the real definition of equality and inclusion, when you look at the sporting world, the playing field, the pitch, tremendous progress has been made over the years. But when you look at other areas of society.” like corporate America, places along these lines, we still have a lot to do.

“So bridging the gap between our beliefs, habits, attitudes and expectations is truly what diversity, equality and inclusion mean for all.

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