Teree Caldwell Johnson Honored as All-America Leader

The National Civic League was both proud and saddened to recognize Teree Caldwell Johnson as the recipient of this year’s All-America Leader Award posthumously. Teree’s husband, Vernon, and children, Baley and Baxtyr, joined virtually at the 75th annual All-America City Award to accept the award on her behalf.




Teree was the living embodiment of the qualities this award was created to recognize, including inclusiveness, innovation, collaboration, equity, civic engagement, and community impact. She dedicated 20 years of her life to Oakridge Neighborhood and Oakridge Neighborhood Services, a housing and human services nonprofit agency located in Des Moines, IA. Since 2006, she also gave her time and talents as an elected representative on the Des Moines School Board. Additionally, she served on the League’s board of directors and was its president from 2022 to 2023. Just last year, she was at the All-America City Award Event in Denver, inspiring us with her words and interviewing nominees for the youth leadership award. Whether in her professional, civic, or personal endeavors, Teree was committed to improving her community and making this world a better, more equitable, and just place.

The League thanks Teree for her service and will honor her legacy by naming the All-America Leader Award in her honor moving forward.

About the Award

Launched in 2022, the All-America Leader Award was created to celebrate the work of civically engaged community members. The award recognizes individuals who have successfully spearheaded civic engagement efforts in their community. The award supports the idea that anyone can be a difference maker in their community, whether it be an engaged resident, a business, a non-profit or faith leader, or a city official. 

Past Winners

Olivera Jankovska, Dallas, TX (2023)

Jeremy Burnside, Portsmouth, OH (2022)

Hon. Roy Buol, Dubuque, IA (2022)

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