Erik Johnston serves as the director of the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD). Gov. Ralph Northam appointed him on Jan. 15, 2018. Johnston is responsible for management and oversight of the agency, which provides community development, economic development and housing program support to communities across the commonwealth. DHCD also focuses on encouraging regional collaboration between localities and other key sectors and administers statewide building codes. Johnston provides policy and legislative support to the Secretary of Commerce and Trade. He serves as ex-officio member of the Board of Commissioners of the Virginia Housing Development Authority and as the governor’s state alternate for the Appalachian Regional Commission. Prior to this role, Johnston served as the chief deputy at DHCD. He also served as the deputy policy director in the Office of Gov. Terry McAuliffe. His background includes service to local governments as the director of government affairs for the Virginia Association of Counties. He also spent eight years working on federal policy with housing and community development stakeholders through his work with the National Association of Counties.
Johnston grew up in the Roanoke Valley and now resides in Chesterfield. He received his bachelor’s degree in political science and international affairs from the University of Mary Washington and his master’s degree in public administration from Virginia Tech.