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AZ/IL: YWCA Honors Midwestern University Vice President with Dorothy Willey Award

March 05, 2014

by Office of Communications

Dr. Karen Johnson

Midwestern University is pleased to announce that Karen D. Johnson, Ph.D., Vice President, University Relations, recently received the prestigious Dorothy Willey Award from the YWCA Maricopa County. Dr. Johnson was one of 10 outstanding community and civic leaders named as honorees in the YWCA's Tribute to Women Awards. The annual awards recognize women whose lives and accomplishments reflect the YWCA's mission to empower women and eliminate racism.

As the recipient of the Dorothy Willey Award, Dr. Johnson is being recognized for her service and dedication to the YWCA principles. In addition to her responsibilities at Midwestern University, Dr. Johnson currently serves on the Board of Directors of UMOM New Day Centers in Phoenix, AZ; the Board of Directors of The Foundation for Public Education in Paradise Valley, AZ; and the Honorary Board of the YWCA Maricopa County. Previously, she has served as the President of the Board of Directors of the YWCA Maricopa County; the Chair of the Nominating Committee and Member of the College of Wooster Alumni Association Board in Wooster, OH; a member of the Board of Directors of the Children's Angel Foundation in Phoenix, AZ; Past Chair of the Marketing Advisory Council of the American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine in Bethesda, MD; and a member of the Board of Directors of the Downers Grove Chamber of Commerce in Downers Grove, IL.

At Midwestern University, Dr. Johnson has been directing the external relations efforts of the Downers Grove, IL, and Glendale, AZ, campuses since 1994. As Vice President of University Relations, she oversees the offices of Admissions, Development and Alumni Relations, and Marketing and Communications for the University's graduate and professional programs in osteopathic medicine, pharmacy, dental medicine, optometry, veterinary medicine, and the health sciences. Dr. Johnson has contributed to many service projects spearheaded by Midwestern faculty and students and has participated in an annual medical mission trip to Guatemala.

The Dorothy Willey Award is the most prestigious award presented by the YWCA Maricopa County and is named after the first recipient of the award. A member of the YWCA since 1933, Dorothy Willey blazed trails, opened doors, offered financial support, and provided essential leadership to the YWCA in Arizona. Dr. Johnson received the Dorothy Willey Award at the Tribute to Women gala held in Phoenix, AZ. The YWCA also created short videos to commemorate the contributions of the 10 recipients of the Tribute to Women Awards. Dr. Johnson's video can be viewed at

Karen Final HD from Cox Creative Studios on Vimeo.

More Information

For more information, please contact:
Office of Communications
630.515.7333 (IL) or 623.572.3353 (AZ)