Josh Johnson leads April fundraising in Leon Commission race, nets second endorsement

Incumbent Nick Maddox still leads the race in fundraising by $10,000 over Johnson.

Godby High School teacher Josh Johnson narrowly outraised his opponents in the Leon County Commission at-large seat race in April, bringing in over $5,000.

Johnson is running against incumbent Nick Maddox and local pastor Rudolph Ferguson. His April total just edges out Maddox’s $4,603 and Ferguson’s $2,425.

Johnson’s fundraising total ($20,433) has been boosted by three straight months of over $5,000 raised, but he is still being outraised by Maddox ($32,984). Ferguson trails the two with $13,343 raised to date.

Maddox leads the field thanks to strong support from Tallahassee businesses and large-dollar donors. He has received 47 donations, meaning his average donor has contributed $702 to him. Twenty-one of the 47 donations are from Tallahassee-based businesses, with all but three giving Maddox $1,000, the contribution cap on local races.

The other two candidates have raised their campaign dollars mostly through individual contributions. Johnson has received 223 donations, setting his average contribution at $92. The only $1,000 donation from a business he received was from Stephenson, Johnson and Johnson, a consulting firm he co-owns.

Ferguson has received 93 donations, setting his average contribution at $143. Ferguson has received 11 donations from Tallahassee businesses, with three giving him the $1,000 max.

The day April fundraising figures were released, Johnson also announced he received a new endorsement from a former Tallahassee and Leon County elected official.

Johnson has been endorsed by former Tallahassee Mayor Debbie Lightsey. She is the second former elected official to endorse Johnson in the past month.

Lightsey, who also served on the Leon County Commission from 1989 to 2010, said some of the decisions made by local elected officials have become “extremely concerning”. She said people like Johnson, who also is president of Tallahassee’s 621 Gallery, are needed to reverse what she views as a “culture of complacency and mediocrity.”

“Josh is not only a fifth-generation resident of Leon County but has spent his life doing incredible work in this community,” Lightsey said. “Josh Johnson is more than poise and presence, he is someone we deserve, and he is well qualified to hold public office.”

Johnson told Florida Politics he is proud to receive her endorsement.

“Tallahassee deserves a new day in local politics, and I am proud a person as respected as Ms. Lightsey thinks that I am a person who can help usher it in,” he said.

Tristan Wood

Tristan Wood graduated from the University of Florida in 2021 with a degree in Journalism. A South Florida native, he has a passion for political and accountability reporting. He previously reported for Fresh Take Florida, a news service that covers the Florida Legislature and state political stories operating out of UF’s College of Journalism and Communications. You can reach Tristan at [email protected], or on Twitter @TristanDWood


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