Ghanaian Woodworker Writes Open Letter to Congress on ImmigrationLYNCHBURG, VA -Sustainable furniture entrepreneur and African immigrant Thomas A. Johnson shares his perspective on immigration reform in an open letter to the President Obama and Congress.

Johnson said that the advancements in immigration reform are commendable but asks that the President and Congress apply the same amount of time and energy in advancing technical education so that the millions of Americans that are "hopeless and jobless" can be equipped with a skill set that will allow them to take full advantage of the opportunities afforded to them in America. Johnson says that in America, opportunities are plentiful but one must have a skill set in order to be able to “find the opportunity that will fit them.”

Last month, Johnson was personally invited by Bertelsmann leadership to participate in the fifth annual Financial Times and Bertelsmann Foundation financial conference in Washington, DC. Johnson brought a unique perspective to the discussion on global economic reform. “I am an example of the true American Dream — a Ghanaian immigrant who came to this country with only twenty dollars and a set of skills,” said Johnson.“Those skills were key to my success as an entrepreneur. I strongly believe that if we do not invest in technical education we will never successfully harness the exceptional human capital existing here in the United States.”

Johnson recently launched and online crowd-funding campaign for the Thomas A. Johnson School of American Woodworking. Funds for the school are being collected online until June 10 through USA Projects, a non-profit organization launched by United States Artists that allows accomplished artists to fund projects by posting them on its site. All donations are tax deductible. For more information and to donate, visit

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