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Honorary doctorate recipient

Sheila C. Johnson

Doctor of Laws (LLD), 2024
For her social leadership as an entrepreneur

Sheila Johnson is a visionary entrepreneur with a passion for helping others. 

In the 1980s, she co-founded Black Entertainment Television. She continues to be a powerful influence in the entertainment industry, executive producing several documentary and feature films with humanitarian themes. 

Johnson has since diversified her business interests. She is founder and CEO of Salamander Collection, which operates luxury properties centred around unique destinations in the US and the Caribbean. 

As a partner of Monumental Sports & Entertainment, Johnson is the only African American woman to have ownership in three professional sports teams: the Washington Capitals (NHL), the Washington Wizards (NBA), and the Washington Mystics (WNBA). She is also the first African American woman to own a PGA Championship golf course. 

Johnson spearheaded the formation of WE Capital, a venture capital consortium specializing in female-led enterprises with a goal of promoting social impact while generating financial returns.

Johnson serves on the education committee of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and is a past member of Barack Obama’s President’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities and the Council on Foreign Relations. She serves as a board member of the Metropolitan Opera, the Jackie Robinson Foundation, the Simon & Schuster Publishing Advisory Board, and the PBS Foundation, among others. 

Her memoir, Walk Through Fire, was published by Simon & Schuster in September 2023.   

Thursday, June 6, 2024 - John Molson School of Business (3pm ceremony) 

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