John is the father of two daughters and a native of Birmingham, Alabama. He was in and out of the foster care system through his younger years. When he finally came to live with his mother permanently, he went to Chilton County High School, where he started making his mark as a trailblazer. John was elected president of the student government association—the first Black student elected to that position. Always learning and growing, he graduated in 2017 in the inaugural classes of both the Youth Speaks Institute for Emerging Organizations and the University of Alabama at Birmingham/Gulf State (UAB) Community Research Fellows Program.
John currently serves as the senior campaign strategy associate, rights restoration, at the Advancement Project to build their national rights restoration campaign. He served as the first rights restoration field director for the Southern Poverty Law Center, covering Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi, Louisiana and Florida. John began this work as the North Region Outreach fellow, Alabama Voting Rights Project (AVRP), a collaboration between the Southern Poverty Law Center and the Campaign Legal Center in Washington, D.C.
He is the co-founder of Real Life Poets, a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit community service organization focusing on mentoring young people and encouraging good communication and oratorical skills using spoken word poetry and the arts. He works directly with justice-involved people, from groups of youth in the Family Court setting to those in drug diversionary programs, as coordinator and creator of the Hip Hop is Life program, serving youth from the UAB Juvenile Treatment Alternatives to Street Crime program and Adolescent Substance Abuse Program.