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Updated: August 5, 2019

Michael “Mike” Johnson

Photo | J. Fiereck Photography Michael “Mike” Johnson


Director, Government Affairs, Sullivan & LeShane Inc.

Age: 35

No. of years with current company: 8

Town where I live: West Hartford

Town where I work: Hartford

College: Sacred Heart University

Highest degree: Bachelor’s degree in business management from Jack Welch School of Business; Bachelor’s in government and politics

Who is your favorite superhero: Batman but my daughter is starting to get me to like Wonder Woman

Mike Johnson’s internship at the state Capitol assisting Rep. TR Rowe cemented his eagerness to work in the political arena.

After graduating, he managed a New York state senate campaign, worked for a legislative caucus, then received a lobbying opportunity with the CT Conference of Municipalities. Soon after, Betty Gallo hired him to work on landmark legislation such as insurance coverage for clinical trials.

At Sullivan & LeShane, under the help of Paddi LeShane and Pat Sullivan, he’s developed a strong portfolio of accomplishments and continues to work on high-stakes issues across the state.

What’s been your biggest professional accomplishment so far in your career?

In 2017 I successfully led a lobbying campaign for Lyft that introduced an entirely brand new regulatory framework for ride-sharing to exist in Connecticut. The contentious nature of the topic made it challenging but I was lucky to work with a great team and pass the bill.

How are you involved in the community?

Greater Hartford has incredible nonprofits that do amazing things every day. I lead a monthly group of different workforce leaders whose goal is to support each other’s charities. Personally, I’m enrolled as a student mentor for Nutmeg Big Brothers Big Sisters who help students graduate high school.

What do you like to do outside of work? ​

By far my favorite thing is taking Coll and Elizabeth to baseball games. I’m a huge baseball nerd (I’ve visited almost 20 MLB parks) and my daughter loves going to Hartford Yard Goats and New Britain Bees games. We call Dunkin’ Donuts Park our “summer home.”

Three reasons why you deserve to be a 40 Under Forty:

• I relish tough challenges by confronting them with hard work and determination. If I ever lose on an issue it’s never because I didn’t do everything I could to get it done.

• I’m an unapologetic advocate of Hartford to young professionals — I enjoy convincing people Hartford has something to offer particularly for generations Y and Z.

• Folks would struggle to find a person who loves their job more than me. I approach everyday with a renewed focus to do the best I can for my clients.

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