Commission Team Members

Continuing the legacy
Johnny Key  Secretary of Education

Johnny Key Secretary of Education


Meet Johnny Key, Secretary of Education for the State of Arkansas

As a state legislator, Senator Key wholeheartedly supported the efforts of the Arkansas MLK Commission in Northwest Arkansas. Please take a moment to read his bio.



Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering, the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville, 1991

Positions Held

  •  Commissioner, Arkansas Department of Education, 2015 – Present
  •  Associate Vice President for University Relations, University of Arkansas System, 2014 – 2015
  •  Arkansas Senator, Arkansas Senate, 2008 – 2014
    •  Senate Committee Chair
      •  Arkansas Legislative Council Administrative Rules and Regulations Committee
      •  Arkansas Lottery Commission Legislative Oversight Committee
      •  Joint Retirement and Social Security Committee
      •  Senate Education Committee of the Peace, Baxter County Quorum Court, 1997 – 2002
    •  Senate Committee Vice-Chair
      •  Academic Oversight Committee
      •  Arkansas Legislative Council Policy Making Committee
      •  Joint Budget Committee
      •  Joint Committee on Public Retirement and Social Security Programs
  •  Arkansas Representative, Arkansas House of Representatives, 2003 – 2008
  •  Justice of the Peace, Baxter County Quorum Court, 1997 – 2002


  •  2013 Legislative Pacesetter of the Year – Arkansas Campaign for Grade-Level Reading
  •  2012 Distinguished Service Award – Arkansas State University at Jonesboro
  •  2012 Invest in Life Award – University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences Cord Blood Bank of Arkansas
  •  2011 Guy Newcomb Award – Arkansas Pharmacists Association
  •  2010 Person of the Year – Arkansas Phi Beta Lambda


On March 25, 2015, Johnny Key was approved by the State Board of Education to be the chief school officer of the Arkansas Department of Education. Governor Asa Hutchinson recommended  Key for the position of commissioner.

Under Key’s leadership, the agency focused the vision on transforming Arkansas to lead the nation in student-focused education.  The mission is to provide leadership, support, and service to schools, districts, and communities so every student graduates prepared for college, career and community engagement.  The value statements and goals guide the daily work within the agency.

Prior to being named commissioner, Key served as associate vice president for university relations at the University of Arkansas System, a position he held since August 2014.

Key began his career in public service in 1997 when he was elected to serve as a justice of the peace on the Baxter County Quorum Court. He was elected to three two-year terms in the House of Representatives, followed by a tenure in the Senate that began in 2008.

While in the Senate, Key served as chair of multiple committees: Senate Education Committee; Arkansas Legislative Council Administrative Rules and Regulations Committee; Joint Retirement and Social Security Committee; and Arkansas Lottery Commission Legislative Oversight Committee. He served as vice chair of the Joint Budget Committee; Arkansas Legislative Council Policy Making Committee; Academic Facilities Oversight Committee; and Joint Committee on Public Retirement and Social Security Programs.

Key graduated from Gurdon High School and received a Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering in 1991 from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville.

He has received many awards, including the 2013 Legislative Pacesetter of the Year by the Arkansas Campaign for Grade-Level Reading; the 2012 Distinguished Service Award from the Arkansas State University at Jonesboro; 2012 Invest in Life Award from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences Cord Blood Bank of Arkansas; the 2011 Guy Newcomb Award from the Arkansas Pharmacists Association; and the 2010 Person of the Year by Arkansas Phi Beta Lambda.

Key and his wife, Shannon, live in Little Rock and have one son, Ryan, and one daughter, Rachel.

DuShun Scarbrough

DuShun Scarbrough

Executive Director (501) 683-1300

DuShun Scarbrough Executive Director, B.A., M.A., Juris Doctorate

Arkansas Martin Luther King, Jr. Commission

DuShun L. Scarbrough, Sr. is a native of Little Rock, Arkansas, who was educated in the Little Rock School District. At the young age of fifteen, Scarbrough began his community involvement in a youth speak-out conference entitled "Death of a Race." Thereafter, he continued his zealous quest by participating in youth seminars and preventive programs. Reared by his grandmother and aunts, it was instilled in him that he could achieve anything if he kept God first. After graduating from high school he went on to acquire a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Psychology from Philander Smith College. During his studies at Philander Smith College, he was a recipient of the JTPA Scholarship. Eager to acquire an astute blend of practical and theoretical skills, Scarbrough left Little Rock in 1999 to further his edification, desiring to someday return to Little Rock and continue serving his community.

 Scarbrough currently holds a Master of Business Administration Degree from Webster University in Orlando, Florida and a Master of Counselor Education Degree from Florida A&M University. He holds a J.D., Juris Doctorate Law Degree from Western Michigan University School of Law. He is also a Class of 2011 recipient of the Harvard Kennedy School of Government's Driving Government Performance and a Class of 2014 recipient of the Harvard Kennedy School of Government's Leaders of the 21st Century Certification. He was also a member of the Delta Regional Authority Leadership class of 2013.

 Scarbrough's goal as Executive Director is to cooperatively keep Commissioners informed of staff progress and community unification, in accordance with the views of the Governor of Arkansas. Scarbrough believes in the organization's mission and vision of promoting racial harmony, multicultural diversity, and social justice for the improvement and equality of all Arkansans. Scarbrough's personal vision for the Arkansas Martin Luther King, Jr. Commission is for Arkansans of all ethnic groups and economic levels to unite and work together on various issues of the community.  With the help and support of Arkansas businesses and residents, we can serve as agents of change. 

 In April of 2014, Mr. Scarbrough initiated and garnered the participation of Arkansans to assist in healing race relations in Harrison, Arkansas, a nationally renowned city that carries the stigma of racism and the national headquarters of the Ku Klux Klan. While in Harrison, Mr. Scarbrough hosted a peace march, unity concert, and a mock funeral to bury hatred and racism.

 In January, Gannett News affiliate THV11 announced that the Arkansas Martin Luther King, Jr. Commission hosted the largest day of service in the nation at the Benton Event Center. The Arkansas Martin Luther King Jr. Commission made the event focus around volunteering, encouraging people to engage in their communities, not just today, but for the entire year.

Under Mr. Scarbrough's leadership, The Arkansas Martin Luther King, Jr. Commission proudly announced Arkansas' first commemorative license plate dedicated to the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The commemorative license plate is available at local revenue offices throughout the state of Arkansas. Arkansas is one of five states in the nation that now offers a license plate commemorating the legacy of Dr. King.

In light of the recent tension between law enforcement and civilians, Mr. Scarbrough decided to take a positive, proactive approach to encouraging community engagement and dialogue. As the leader of an agency dedicated to promoting the life and legacy of the late Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.,  Mr. Scarbrough crafted public service announcements and initiatives that the Commission initiated to move forward towards community involvement, healing, and mutual understanding. The purpose of the public service announcements were to show that as a community we must stand together with our law enforcement officials and that there can be positive interaction between the two.  Mr. Scarbrough strongly believes in Dr. King's teachings and "What affects one directly, affects us all indirectly." 

Mr. Scarbrough is married to Angela Scarbrough and the couple shares three children DuShun Scarbrough, Jr., Kennedy Scarbrough, and Braxton Scarbrough.

 Special Awards and Acknowledgements

2012, 2014, Nominee, 2015, Finalist, Arkansas State Employee of the Year

2017 Silent Hero Finalist, National Award for Government Employees

National Drum Major for Leadership Award, United States Department of Education



Honorable Asa Hutchinson

Honorable Asa Hutchinson

Arkansas' 46th Governor 5016822345

Asa Hutchinson is the 46th governor of the State of Arkansas. In 2018, he was re-elected with 65% of the vote, having received more votes than any other candidate for governor in the state's history.

He has won recognition for the state as a leader in computer science education, cut taxes by $150 million, and signed a law that exempts the retirement pay of veterans from state income tax.

Under his economic development policies, 70,000 more people are working in Arkansas than when he took office, and he has signed incentive agreements with nearly 400 companies that were expanding or opening in the state. For nearly two years, the state’s unemployment rate has stayed at or below the national rate.

President Ronald Reagan appointed Governor Hutchinson as U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Arkansas. In 1996, he won the first of three successive terms in the U.S. House of Representatives. During his third term in Congress, President George W. Bush appointed him director of the Drug Enforcement Administration and later as an undersecretary in the newly created Department of Homeland Security.

His experience has established him as a national resource for his expertise on trade, energy, national security, and education. The governor has been invited to the White House several times to join discussions about health care, Medicaid, and education issues.

The Governor is the former chairman of the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission (IOGCC), Southern States Energy Board (SSEB) and the Southern Regional Education Board.

Governor Hutchinson grew up on a small farm in Gravette. He is a graduate of the University of Arkansas law school. He and his wife, Susan, have been married 45 years. They have four children and six grandchildren.


Gerald Canada


Paul Davis


Patrick Gulley


Carmen Helton


Chairwoman Sharon Ingram


Elizabeth Johnson


Andy Montgomery


Dr. Kermitt Parks


Derek Scott


Dewitt Smith, III


Janis Waddy


Laveta Wills-Hale