30 Facts About Alan Johnson


Alan Johnson served under Blair as Minister of State for Universities from 2003 to 2004, as Secretary of State for Work and Pensions from 2004 to 2005, and as President of the Board of Trade from 2005 to 2006.


Alan Johnson then worked at Tesco before becoming a postman at 18.


Alan Johnson was interested in music and joined two pop music bands.


Alan Johnson joined the Union of Communication Workers, becoming a branch official.


Alan Johnson joined the Labour Party in 1971, although he considered himself a Marxist ideologically aligned with the Communist Party of Great Britain.


Just three weeks before the 1997 general election, Alan Johnson was selected to stand for parliament in the safe Labour seat of Hull West and Hessle when the previous incumbent, Stuart Randall, stood down suddenly.


Alan Johnson was appointed Parliamentary Private Secretary to Dawn Primarolo in 1997 and achieved his first ministerial post at the Department of Trade and Industry in 1999.


Alan Johnson was moved to the Department for Education and Skills in 2003 as Minister for Higher Education although he had left school at 15.


The department's old name was kept and Alan Johnson served as Secretary of State for Trade and Industry.


Alan Johnson has previously expressed some concerns over diplomas, and has opened up debate in parliament on the subject of what parental situation is best.


Alan Johnson stated that in his view, it is the parents themselves who make the difference, not their marital situation.


Alan Johnson looked at improving pay and working conditions for teachers during his tenure as Education Secretary.


Alan Johnson became Secretary of State for Health on 28 June 2007, succeeding Patricia Hewitt in Prime Minister Gordon Brown's first Cabinet.


Alan Johnson later criticised breast cancer patient Debbie Hirst because she attempted to buy the cancer drug Avastin, which the NHS had denied her.


On 5 June 2009, Alan Johnson was appointed to the position of Home Secretary during a reshuffle, replacing the first female holder of the post, Jacqui Smith.


In October 2009, Alan Johnson sacked the chairman of the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs, Professor David Nutt.


Alan Johnson said Government lawyers had not forced the judiciary to water down criticism of MI5, despite an earlier, draft ruling by Lord Neuberger, the Master of the Rolls that the Security Service had failed to respect human rights, deliberately misled parliament, and had a "culture of suppression" that undermined government assurances about its conduct.


Alan Johnson publicly stated in May 2006 he expected to stand for the post of Leader of the Labour Party when Tony Blair stepped down.


Alan Johnson told the BBC in an interview on 9 November 2006 that he would in fact be supporting Brown and standing as deputy leader.


Alan Johnson was successfully nominated onto the ballot paper for Labour Deputy leader with most number of nominations.


On 24 June 2007, Alan Johnson was narrowly beaten for the deputy leadership by Harriet Harman.


In November 2014, amid criticism within the party of its leader Ed Miliband, Alan Johnson again denied speculation that he was a potential leadership candidate.


In 2010, there was much speculation that Alan Johnson was going to stand as a candidate for the London Mayoral election after announcing that he was not going to contest the leadership.


Alan Johnson is a strong supporter of electoral reform, advocating the Alternative Vote Plus system as recommended by the Jenkins Commission.


Alan Johnson indicated that he would seek support within the Labour Party for an amendment to the government's Bill on Electoral Reform, to add AV+ as an additional choice in the referendum.


Alan Johnson was chosen as Shadow Chancellor in Ed Miliband's first shadow cabinet, appointed on 8 October 2010.


Alan Johnson resigned as Shadow Chancellor on 20 January 2011 after three and a half months in the job, citing personal reasons.


Alan Johnson campaigned for Britain to remain in the European Union in the 2016 referendum, and was chair of the Labour Party's 'Labour In For Britain' campaign.


In December 2015, Alan Johnson married his third wife, businesswoman Carolyn Burgess.


Alan Johnson's hobbies include music, tennis, reading, cooking, football, and radio.