Dr Umar Johnson is a multi-talented Pan-Africanist, psychologist, motivational speaker, and social media personality, who is perhaps best known for his efforts to help and stand with the black community, and his radical views on being of Afro-American ethnicity.
Age, Early Life, and Education Background
Dr Umar Johnson was born Jermaine Shoemake under the Leo zodiac sign on 12 August 1974, which makes him 48 years old as of 2022, and is a native of North Central, Philadelphia. He’s the son of the US Marine Corps drill instructor, Jamar Abdullah Johnson, and his estranged wife, Barbara Shoemake. Dr Umar’s mother named him after her best-loved musician, Jermaine Jackson. His parents parted ways when he was still young, and his dad went on to marry the preschool tutor, Bernice E. Dockins. He spent his childhood in a strict Muslim household together with his 10 siblings and his stepmother – Jermaine’s father later changed his name to Umar Rashad Abdullah-Johnson.
Johnson began his studies at Meade and Duckery Elementary Schools in North Philadelphia. He then joined Beeber Junior High, where he enrolled in the academically gifted program, Start Now. He later entered Scotland School for Veteran’s Children, Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, which was closed in 2009 – he completed his studies in 1992. Dr Johnson then enrolled at the Millersville University of Pennsylvania, from where he graduated with two bachelor’s degrees in Psychology and Political Science in 1997. He moved back to his hometown and continued with his studies at Hahnemann University, graduating as a Doctor of Psychology – from Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM), and is also an alumnus of Lehigh University, where he was awarded a Master’s degree in School Psychology. Further, Dr Johnson was licensed to practice in Philadelphia shortly after his graduation, which saw him beginning his career as a school psychologist in the state’s school district.
Dr Johnson is widely referred to as ‘The Prince of Pan-Afrikanism.’
Reportedly, he is the first male psychologist to write a book that has well-laid strategies on how to break the stigma associated with mental health and ADHD misdiagnosis, which is specifically tailored for black parents.
He claims that he is a distant relative of the late legendary social reformer, writer, orator and abolitionist, Fredrick Douglass. However, the Douglass family has refuted his claims, saying that they are 100% certain that Dr Umar is not their family descendant.
Johnson is known for making controversial statements; he is openly against inter-racial and same-sex marriages. In January 2020, he falsely suggested that the chopper carrying the late NBA star, Kobe Bryant, was sabotaged in an attempt to assassinate him as ordered by the pharmaceutical industry and the NBA.
Dr Umar’s deep experience in psychology and urge to transform the lives of the black community sparked his interest in opening the Black-only school, Fredrick Douglass Marcus Garvey Academy (simply known as FDMG) in 2014. He needed $5 million for the project, which saw him asking for donations from well-wishers. However, he has not opened the school to date, despite receiving a considerable amount in donations, which has led to allegations that he conned the donors. He has dismissed the claims, and accused the African-American community of being less supportive – in one of his many social media videos, Dr Umar claimed that FDMG would have been a success if he was Mexican or if the donation he had requested was for a basketball league or a night club. Johnson created the Leimert Park-based National Independent Black Parent Association in April 2017.
Dr Johnson also wrote the book, “Psycho Academic Holocaust: The Special Education and ADHD War Against Black Boys.” Moreover, he’s been featured in several shows, including “Tom Joyner’s Morning Show,” “News One Now,” “Bev Smith Show,” and “The Breakfast Club.” He has also appeared as a guest life coach in the reality show, “The Real Housewives of Atlanta.” His service towards the Afro-American community has seen him being awarded a Certificate of Appreciation.
Dr Umar is highly active on several social media platforms; he has over 800,000 followers on Instagram and over 160,000 on Twitter, both of which he uses to air his views on Pan-Africanism, and also to encourage Afro-Americans to identify with the people of Africa and the black community in general, rather than segregating themselves based on their nationalities, professions, religions, and fraternal organizations.
Doors Are Open in Charlotte!! King Kong Konsciousness Takes the Stage at 830pm Sharp! Often Imitated but Never Duplicated! The One & Only International Ifatunde…… pic.twitter.com/dfNfHKG3aM
— Dr. Umar Johnson (@DrUmarJohnson) July 6, 2019
Dr Umar has been criticized by various media outlets including The Root magazine and Mail & Guardian newspaper’s reporter, Khanya Mtshali, for his views on Pan-Africanism. Previously, he came under scrutiny for allegedly practicing psychology without a license. He was even ordered to appear before Pennsylvania’s State Board of Psychologists to answer the charges in December 2017. Luckily, the board didn’t invalidate his psychology license after he denied the charges.
Dr Johnson keeps all his love-life details away from the public’s eyes; he’s is allegedly married to his unnamed longtime girlfriend, with whom many believe that he’s welcomed a son and a daughter. It’s also alleged that the name of his daughter is Indra Ove, but he hasn’t confirmed any of this. He has a profound affection for children and is very sociable – he’s often seen taking selfies with people in public places.
Rumors that Dr Umar had exchanged vows with two unnamed women (at the same time) began spreading when he uploaded the photo of the wedding function on Instagram on 11 September 2021. The rumor was fueled by a video – which went viral on social media – that showed him going down on his knees as he put rings on each of the women’s fingers. One week after the viral video surfaced, Dr Umar addressed his Instagram fans confirming that his wedding news was fake and blamed it on several major black media outlets for trying to tarnish his name.
Scandals and Controversy
Dr Umar has been the subject of many controversies due to his outspoken nature. Previously, a woman named Khym Ringgold accused him of engaging in a sexual relationship with her adding that she had nothing against him but just wanted to let everyone know about it. Dr Umar responded to her allegations with bitter accusations of his own, and it’s reported that he even called her unpleasant names on Instagram.
Height, Weight, and Physical Appearance
Dr Johnson is of Afro-American roots, has a set of dark-brown eyes, black hair, and a beard. He stands at an impressive height of 6ft 3ins (1.91m) and weighs around 200lbs (91kgs).
Dr Umar’s multiple career endeavors and contributions to the community have seen him become very famous and respectable. He’s accumulated a good sum too, and is reportedly worth around $800,000, as of late-2022.