MHA Welcomes New Executive Director

Smooth Leadership Transition

Mental Health America of Central Carolinas (MHA) is pleased to announce Ayo Marie Johnson (pictured) will become the organization’s new Executive Director effective January 22, 2024.

Johnson comes to MHA with an extensive resume centered around nonprofit management, where she has led all facets of nonprofit leadership. Her experience includes a decade with the Capital Area YMCA in Trenton, NJ, where she served as COO and Chief Human Resources Officer, and completed her tenure there as interim CEO. She is the owner of Wonder Girl Consulting, where she has specialized in taking on interim CEO and contract COO assignments, helping to lead and stabilize organizations during times of transition.

The New York native is a veteran nonprofit leader who has experience in fundraising, staff development, financial management, and program analysis. Throughout her decades working in the nonprofit arena, she has demonstrated herself as a leader in building meaningful partnerships and collaborations in the community, as well as developing a strategic vision that encompasses specific organizational objectives and strategies to strengthen nonprofits. She is a graduate of Rider University in New Jersey, with an MA in Organizational Leadership, and a BS in Global Marketing.

“After an extensive search, MHA is thrilled to welcome Ayo as our next Executive Director,” said Board President Tiffany Morgan. “She brings a vast array of needed skills to take MHA into the next decade, and we are excited to see where Ayo takes us in partnership with the amazing and talented MHA team and Board.”

Johnson stated she is honored to join such a vibrant, caring, and growing organization. “There are so many facets to the work MHA does in Mecklenburg and Cabarrus Counties, and I can’twait to get started in helping to lift up the organization, while continuing to meet the growing mental health needs in our community.”

During the leadership transition, Johnson will work closely with Kathy Rogers to ensure a smooth handoff as MHA moves into this next phase of its 90-year history. Rogers will be retiring on February 29, 2024. “The MHA Board of Directors wishes all the best to Kathy on her retirement and we thank her for the incredible job she has done leading the organization over the past six years,” said Morgan.

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