Ashland Johnson, Esq.
Founder, Inclusion Playbook
An attorney, equity and inclusion strategist, and former Division I athlete, Ashland Johnson has over a decade of civil rights experience working with social justice communities, advising sports leaders, and serving in leadership roles in advocacy organizations.
Ashland recently served as the Director of Public Education & Research for the Human Rights Campaign, executing innovative, data-driven campaigns at the intersections of race, sexual orientation, gender identity, health care, sports, and faith. As a member of HRC’s senior leadership team, Ashland also helped establish and chair HRC’s Racial Equity & Inclusion table to further the organization’s commitment to and engagement with communities of color. Prior to HRC, Ashland served as Athlete Ally's Policy Director, working with sports leaders to promote LGBTQ inclusion both on the field and under the law. She previously served as Policy Counsel for at the National Center for Lesbian Rights, where she helped develop the first national LGBTQ Sports Project. In 2016, Ashland was named as one of the 40 best LGBTQ lawyers under 40 by the National LGBT Bar Association.
Ashland has extensive experience working with major sports leagues and associations, including the NBA, NCAA, NFL, USOC, and various national governing bodies to strengthen their social responsibility programming, policies, and platforms at the intersection of inclusion, race, gender, and the law. She recently authored the groundbreaking report, Play to Win: Improving the Lives of LGBTQ Youth in Sports which provides critical insights and action steps for more inclusive sporting spaces.
Ashland is a graduate of Furman University, where she was a member of the Varsity Women's Basketball team. She holds a law degree from the University of Georgia School of Law. She is a former National Board member of the American Constitution Society and currently serves on the National Board of Directors for the Point Foundation.