Waldo Johnson, a male-presenting person, smiles towards the camera in a library.

Waldo E Johnson Jr., PhD

Vice Provost, Professor

969 E. 60th Street
Chicago, IL 60637

Office Location: W18

Areas of Expertise
African Americans
Children and Adolescents
Mental Health
Poverty and Income
Race, Ethnicity, and Culture
Crown Family School Affiliations
UChicago Affiliations
Center for the Study of Gender and Sexuality
Center for the Study of Race, Politics, and Culture

He is PI for the Chicago Parenting Initiative Evaluation Study, a multi-year OAPP evaluation study of the impact of male enhancement services provision to young fathers on their physical and psychological well-being as well as the well-being of adolescent African American and Latina parenting mothers and their children served by Access Community Health Network in eighteen Chicago’s south and southwest neighborhoods; he is examining the physical and mental health statuses of disconnected African American males in the South Side Health and Vitality Studies (SSHVS), a family of medical, public health, social science and community–based participatory research studies of the Urban Health Initiative aimed at improving the health and wellbeing of Chicago’s South Side residents in 34 community areas served by University of Chicago Medicine.

He is a research consultant for the Urban Institute’s Race, Place and Poverty: An Urban Ethnographer Symposium on Low-Income Men, where he provides expert consultation in the form of empirical research advisory and product review support in the area of family formation, self and family sufficiency and stability among low-income urban men to the Urban Institute study team in the development of the Urban Ethnographer’s Symposium on Low-Income Men, funded by the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services on two of the major tasks: (1) Development of  background material and issue briefs (identification of material and review of documents) as well as providing written feedback on the draft issue briefs on the above areas of expertise and (2) Identify prospective participants for the September 13-14, 2012 symposium.

He is also a research consultant for Mathematica Policy Research Parents and Children Together (PACT), a multi-year (2011-2016) mixed-methods evaluation of the Administration for Children and Families’ (ACF) Responsible Fatherhood and Healthy Marriage grants initiative led by Mathematica Policy Research.  PACT is comprised of two primary components: the impact and implementation studies and the qualitative studies with different yet complementary purposes.  Waldo provides expert consultation on the development of the qualitative studies in which six to fifteen grantees will be selected to participate in the studies designed not only to gain a better understanding of the participants’ lives and their experiences with the programs but also the organizational and community-level factors that may influence program outcomes.

He was a research consultant at the Warren Institute of Berkeley Law School and The California Endowment in developing a California-based research, policy and practice initiative focused on enhancing the status of boys of color; Chicago Community Trust and United Way of Metropolitan Chicago in the development of their respective African American Male Initiatives, both of which focus on fatherhood and family, education and human capital development, physical and behavioral health, mentoring and human justice policies. He is conducting the evaluation of the United Way African American Male Initiative.

Professors Yoonsun Choi and Waldo E. Johnson, Jr. are inducted as 2023 fellows by the American Academy of Social Work & Social Welfare (AASWSW)
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Waldo E. Johnson, Jr. has been appointed Vice Provost
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Waldo E. Johnson Jr. comments on how LeBron James is changing the perception of Black fatherhood
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Waldo E. Johnson Jr. Spoke as Part of Mercer University's African American History Month Programming
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Waldo Johnson Jr. talks about how Black fathers face persistent falsehoods
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William Pollak Award for Excellence in Teaching
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  • Adams, R. and Johnson, W. (2021) Faith as mechanism for health promotion among rural African  American prostate cancer survivors: A qualitative examination, Invited manuscript for Special Issue: Stress, Faith, Resiliency, and Health among Black Men. International Journal of Environmental Health and Public Health.

  • Johnson, W., Briggs, H.E. (2021) Interventions with Fathers: Effective Social Work Practice for Enhancing Individual and Family Well-Being. Research on Social Work Practice; 31(8):791-796. doi:10.1177/10497315211047187

  • Johnson, W., Dorsey, M., Rich, L., and Brooks, L. (2020) Remain Calm, Negotiate or Defer but by All Means, Call Me: Father-Son Communication to Keep Sons Safe from Violence Involvement and Victimization. Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology, 71, November-December 2020

  • McLeod, B., Johnson, W., Cryer-Coupet, Q., and Mincy, R. (2019). Examining the longitudinal effects of paternal incarceration and co-parenting on son’s educational outcomes: A meditational analysis. Children and Youth Services Review, 100 ©, 362-375.  via%3Dihub#!

  • Lemmons, B. and Johnson, W. (2019). Game changers: A critical race theory analysis of the economic, social and political factors impacting Black fatherhood and family formation. Social Work in Public Health, DOI: 10.1080/19371918.2018.1562406   

  • Johnson, W. (2019). Urban men’s health: How the urban environment affects Black men’s health, pp. 141-179. In D. Griffith, M. Bruce and R. Thorpe (Eds.) Men’s Health Equity: A Handbook. New York, NY:  Routledge Taylor & Francis Group.
  • Johnson Jr., Waldo E. In press. "Masculinity and sexual identity: Making meaning of paternal identity among young African American males." Journal of African American Men.
  • Johnson Jr., Waldo E., and James McKinney. In press. "Transcending individual achievement and organizational pursuits: A twentieth century public policy framework for African Americans." In Alpha Phi Alpha and the Crisis of Organizational Identity: A Case Study Within Black Greekdom, edited by Gregory S. Parks and Stefan M. Bradley. Lexington, KY: University Press of Kentucky.
  • Johnson Jr., Waldo E., Jeffrey Shears, and Armon R. Perry. In press. "Paternal involvement among African American fathers: Evidence from the early Head Start and Fragile Families and Child Well-being study." Research on Social Work Practice.
  • APA Working Group on Health Disparities in Boys and Men and the APA Health Disparities Office. 2018. Health Disparities in Racial/Ethnic and Sexual Minority Boys and Men. [online] APA Health Disparities Office. Available at: [Accessed 20 Aug. 2018].
  • Perry, A., and Waldo E. Johnson, Jr. 2017. “African American Fathers.” In Fathers in America: Social Work Perspectives on a Changing Society. C. Mazza and A. Perry, eds. Springfield, IL: C. C. Thomas.
  • Johnson Jr., Waldo E. 2014. "Black masculinity, manhood, and marriage." In By Grace: The Challenges, Strengths, and Promise of African American Marriages, edited by Tricia B. Bent-Goodley. Washington, DC: NASW Press.
  • Richardson, Joseph B., Waldo E. Johnson Jr., and Christopher St. Vil. 2014. "I want him locked up: Social capital, African American parenting strategies and the juvenile court." Journal of Contemporary Ethnography 43(4): 488-522.
  • St. Vil, Noelle M., Christopher St. Vil, and Waldo E. Johnson Jr. 2014. "Marriage diversity in the African American community." In By Grace: The Challenges, Strengths, and Promise of African American Marriages, edited by Tricia B. Bent-Goodley. Washington, DC: NASW Press.
  • Lindau, Stacy A., Jennifer A. Makelarski, Marshall H. Chin, Shane Desautels, Daniel Johnson, Waldo E. Johnson Jr., Doriane Miller, Susan Peters, Connie Robinson, John Schneider, Florence Thicklin, Natalie P. Watson, Marcus Wolfe, and Eric Whitaker. 2011. "Building community-engaged health research and discovery infrastructure on the South Side of Chicago: Science in service to community priorities." Preventive Medicine 52(3-4): 200-7.
  • Johnson Jr., Waldo E., ed. 2010. Social work with African American males: Health, mental health, and social policy. New York: Oxford.
  • Johnson Jr., Waldo E., David Pate, and Jarvis Givens. 2010. "Big boys don’t cry, black boys don’t feel: The intersection of shame and worry on community violence and the social construction of masculinity among African American males - The case of Derrion Albert." In Changing Places: How Communities Will Improve the Health of Boys of Color, edited by Christopher F. Edley Jr., and Jorge Ruiz de Velasco. Berkeley: University of California Press.
  • Tsoi-A-Fatt, Rhonda, Waldo E. Johnson Jr., and David Pater. 2010. We dream a world: The 2025 vision for America’s black men and boys. Available at
  • Perry, R., Chien, A., Walker, W., Fisher, T. and Waldo E. Johnson. 2009. "African American Adolescent Males’ Views on Doctors and the Healthcare System." Journal of the National Medical Association 102(4): 312-20.
  • Ravenell, Joseph E., Eric E. Whitaker, and Waldo E. Johnson. 2008. "According to him: Barriers to healthcare among African American men." Journal of National Medical Association 100(10): 434-45.
  • Johnson, Waldo E. 2007. "Working with marginalized and minority men." In International Encyclopedia of Men and Masculinities, Vol. 1. Michael Flood, Judith Kegan Gardiner, Bob Pease, and Keith Pringle, eds. London: Routledge.
  • Johnson, Waldo E., and Wayne L. Salter. 2006. "Paternity disestablishment, father in­volvement and the best interest of the child: Lessons from child welfare and fam­ily law." Paper presented at the Emerging Issues in Paternity Symposium. Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation, U.S. Department of Health and Human Ser­vices.
  • Ravenell, Joseph E., Waldo E. Johnson, and Eric E. Whitaker. 2006. "African American men’s perceptions of health: A focus group study." Journal of National Medical Association 98(4): 544-50.
  • Johnson, Waldo E. 2005. Review of The promise keepers: Servants, soldiers and godly men, by John P. Bartkowski. Social Service Review 79(3): 564-66. 
  • Johnson, Waldo E., and Vaughn D. Bryant. 2005. "Unwed African American fathers’ par­ticipation in child welfare permanency planning: Case workers’ perspectives." In Child welfare revisited: An Africentric perspective, edited by Joyce C. Everett, Sandra S. Chipungu, and Bogart R. Leashore, 169-196. Piscataway, NJ: Rutgers University Press. 
  • O’Donnell, John M., Waldo E. Johnson, Lisa Easley D’Aunno, and Helen L. Thornton. 2005. Fathers in child welfare: Caseworkers’ perspectives. Child Welfare 84(3): 387­-414. 
  • Pate, D., Waldo E. Johnson, and Mark Turner. 2005. "Strengths and vulnerabilities of low income married parents." Paper presented at the Strengthening Healthy Marriage Initiative, Manpower Demonstration Research Corporation. 
  • Currence, Princess L.J., and Waldo E. Johnson. 2003. "The negative implications of in­carceration on black fathers." African American Research Perspectives 9(1): 24-32. 
  • Johnson, Waldo E. 2003. "Conceptualization and measurement of positive healthy cou­ple relationships." Paper presented at the Measurement Issues in Family Demog­raphy Conference, National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, Family and Child Well-Being Research Network, Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation, Administration for Children and Families; The Federal Interagency Fo­rum on Child and Family Statistics, and the Demographic and Behavioral Sciences Branch, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, November 13-14, 2003, in Bethesda, MD. J
  • Johnson, Waldo E. 2002. "Time out of bound: High school completion and work prepa­ration among urban, poor, unwed African American fathers." In African American education: Race, community, inequality and achievement -A tribute to Edgar G. Epps, edited by Walter R. Allen, Margaret Beale Spencer, and Carla O’Connor, 229-258. UK: Elsevier/ JAI Press. 
  • Johnson, Waldo E. 2002. "Social work strategies for sustaining paternal involvement among unwed fathers: Insights from field research." Professional Development: The International Journal of Continuing Social Work Education 4(3)/5(1): 70-83.

Waldo E. Johnson, Jr., Ph.D., MSW, Professor at the University of Chicago Crown Family School of Social Work, Policy, and Practice, has been appointed Vice Provost. Waldo will lead the University's Diversity & Inclusion Initiative, supporting the Center for Identity + Inclusion; the Center for the Study of Gender and Sexuality; and the Center for the Study of Race, Politics, and Culture (CSRPC), and collaborate with units across campus to help them advance their diversity and inclusion goals. Johnson will also lead the Faculty Development Program and oversee chair development, dual careers, and faculty recruitment/relocation. Additionally, he will oversee the Provost's Postdoctoral Fellows Program and the Neubauer Family Assistant Professors Program.

Johnson will serve as Vice Provost in a part-time capacity for the Winter Quarter, 2022, during which time he will also maintain his responsibilities as Deputy Dean for Curriculum at the Crown Family School. He will join the Office of the Provost full-time at the start of the Spring Quarter, 2022.

He is a member of the Ford Foundation Scholars Network on Masculinity and the Wellbeing of African American Males; ACF’s Welfare and Economic Self-Sufficiency Technical Working Group; 2025 Campaign for Black Men and Boys; Chair, Commission on Research and member of the Board of Directors, Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) 2010-2013; Co-Chair of the Illinois Juvenile Justice Research and Information Consortium, Illinois Juvenile Justice Leadership Council; sits on the board of directors of the Center for Family Policy and Practice (CFFPP); and is the editor of Social Work with African American Males: Health, Mental Health and Social Policy (Oxford University Press, 2010).