Hannibal B. Johnson
Hannibal B. Johnson
“Service is life. I am honored and humbled to be recognized for living purposefully.”
A graduate of Northside High School in Fort Smith, Arkansas, the University of Arkansas, and Harvard Law School, Hannibal B. Johnson is an author, attorney, and independent consultant specializing in diversity, equity, and inclusion. He has taught at The University of Tulsa College of Law, Oklahoma State University, and The University of Oklahoma. He serves on the federal 400 Years of African-American History Commission, a body charged with planning, developing, and implementing activities appropriate for the 400th anniversary of the 1619 arrival of Africans in the English colonies at Point Comfort, Virginia.
Johnson chaired the Education Committee for the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre Centennial Commission and served as local curator of its world-class history center, Greenwood Rising. His ten books, including Black Wall Street 100: An American City Grapples With Its Historical Racial Trauma, chronicle the African American experience in Oklahoma and its indelible impact on American history. Johnson’s play, Big Mama Speaks—A Tulsa Race Riot Survivor’s Story, was selected for the 2011 National Black Theatre Festival and has been staged in Caux, Switzerland, among countless other locations.
With a strong passion for community service at the local, state, and national levels, Johnson has led the boards of Leadership Tulsa, the Oklahoma Department of Libraries, and the Community Leadership Association. He served on the Oklahoma Advisory Committee for the United States Commission on Civil Rights. His honors include the National Philanthropy Day Award for Diversity and Inclusion from the Association of Fundraising Professionals, the Ada Lois Sipuel Fisher Diversity Award from the Oklahoma Bar Association, the Keeping the Dream Alive Award from the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Commemoration Society, the Ralph Ellison Literary Award from Black Liberated Arts Center, Inc., and the Arrell Gibson Lifetime Achievement Award from the Oklahoma Center for the Book.
Johnson once swam in the Dead Sea.
Johnson has lived in Tulsa for about 35 years and taught at the University of Oklahoma, Oklahoma State University, and Tulsa University. He is deeply engaged in all aspects of the Tulsa community and a number of statewide initiatives.