Johnson ’07 Recognized Among Orlando’s Power Players

November 02, 2023

By Jessica Firpi ’11

Rollins alum Kyle Johnson '07
Photo by Scott Cook.

The Orlando Business Journal’s annual Power Players awards have named Kyle Johnson ’07 among Central Florida’s most innovative business leaders and executives.

Rollins Professional Advancement alum Kyle Johnson ’07 was one of four Rollins alumni named to the Orlando Business Journal’s 2023 Power Players, an annual list of industry giants, disruptors, dealmakers, and connectors in Central Florida.

Johnson is the president and CEO of the nonprofit Lighthouse Central Florida and its sister B Corporation, Lighthouse Works, both of which serve blind and visually impaired members of the Central Florida community.

“By the time I got to Rollins, I think I had a call to service in me, but I didn’t really understand it,” says Johnson, who attended the Professional Advancement program while working full-time in wealth management. “I cared about service, but going to Rollins definitely reinforced that. It made me feel like I was on the right track.”

While at Rollins, Johnson received a valuable lesson in active listening—taking emeritus communication professor Rick Bommelje’s Listening course—that altered his perspective. This pivotal insight shaped his worldview and prompted a desire to make a meaningful impact.

His Rollins journey led him to his current position: leading organizations dedicated to empowering and supporting blind and visually impaired individuals in Central Florida by creating competitive career opportunities. As community partners, Lighthouse Central Florida and Lighthouse Works host Rollins students for a variety of learning opportunities and real-world problem-solving experiences, instilling in them the significance of service and social impact.

“I’m not kidding when I say, before coming to Rollins, I had no idea where I’d be in my career,” says Johnson. “Honestly, that’s why I’m so passionate about the work I do in this sector because it really gave me my life. For me, having gone to Rollins and then experiencing this renaissance in myself—where I literally didn’t know what I should be doing in my life and now I’m doing exactly what I was born to do—it’s a dream come true.”

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