Born and raised in Reading, Pennsylvania, Carissa Johnson is an example of leadership in action. A graduate of Reading Senior High School, Carissa began her journey as a social justice advocate at Widener University where she majored in Criminal Justice and Psychology.
Upon the successful completion of her bachelor’s degree, Carissa began interning with District Justice, William N. Hall Jr. in the Berks County District Justice Office. In December of 2010, she completed her Master’s Degree in Business Administration at Alvernia University.
In her former position as a counselor at Berks County Jail System, Carissa helped inmates see their potential through group and individual counseling. She also had the unique opportunity to serve as a liaison to community agencies, helping to ensure that inmates had a smooth transition back into society.
In January 2018, Carissa was sworn in as Magisterial District Judge of Southeast Reading. In this position she continues to demonstrate her dedication to her community by doing her best to improve the conditions of the area she serves. Carissa often attends legal trainings to ensure that she is serving her community to the best of her ability and donates much of her time to organizations like Mentor for Sisterhood of Reading (an organization that mentors young girls and helps them with building self-esteem and achieving their dreams). She is also a community mentor for the Reading Collegiate Scholars Program at Alvernia University, and participates in a shadowing program that gives high school students the opportunity to shadow a Berks County judge.
In recent years she has served on the City of Reading Diversity Board, Family Promise of Berks County, and as a member of the NAACP Reading Branch. Carissa continues to grow and learn through educational opportunities, such as Leadership Berks, where she graduated in the 2012 class.
By David Nazario