Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

DC United president Danita Johnson talks creating winning culture & growing diversity

A few months into her tenure as D.C. United's president of business operations, Danita Johnson discussed both strategy and ambitions on the latest episode of The Call Up.

Johnson spoke about creating a winning culture that is bigger than just what happens on the field, though she sees similarities between the on-field and off-field work.

"I think the winning happens when you build the right culture," Johnson said. "I've been with teams that I've won championships with and I feel like there's this essence that comes along with it, like when things are just clicking, when you create a good place to work, when you create a sense of belonging, and it takes work. It doesn't happen overnight. I can't say we're perfect. No. We're going to get there.

"We're going to work through that but I think that there's this thing that creates, to me, the opportunity to win, when you do all the little things, so you have to work on the details to create an opportunity to win. It's just like as detailed you are on the field or on the pitch, right?"

For Johnson, one of those details is creating an inclusive environment for the club's fanbase. She noted the club's collaboration with Rose Room Collective, a new supporters' group launched by people of color and for people of color.

"It's an all diverse supporters' group that just started a few months ago and they're focused on bringing in more minorities and introducing them to the sport," Johnson said. "I think there's definitely ways that we can continue to do this and I think that's going to be a part of us. ... We just gotta put our foot a little further into it, go a little harder at it and continue to make strong, strategic moves to do so."

Listen to more from Johnson and the latest in MLS on this week's episode of The Call Up.