The Blue Ridge National Heritage Area (BRNHA) is pleased to welcome Brandon Johnson to its staff. The North Carolina native will serve as the program manager for the non-profit organization based in Asheville.
“Brandon brings a depth of appreciation for the distinct natural and cultural resources of Western North Carolina,” said Blue Ridge National Heritage Area Executive Director Angie Chandler. “Not only is he a scholar of Appalachian culture, but he also has hands-on experience with leading traditional music and craft endeavors, such as the Bluff Mountain Festival. We’re fortunate to have him on board.”
Originally from Lenoir, North Carolina, Johnson served as faculty for English and Appalachian Studies programs at Mars Hill University and served as assistant registrar for the school. He is a traditional musician on mandolin, guitar and fiddle, and he has been an instructor with the Junior Appalachian Musicians Program for the Madison County Arts Council. Johnson enjoys luthier work in his spare time, building fiddles.
Johnson’s overall responsibilities will be managing the organization’s cultural trails and expanding programs into the future.
“I’m honored to serve the mission of BRNHA,” said Johnson. “Its commitment to protecting and promoting our region’s natural and cultural treasures is synonymous with my own. One of my first areas of focus is the new Blue Ridge Craft Trails. I’m excited to develop this program in all of the 25 counties that BRNHA serves.”