Hi there! It's great to finally meet you.

My name is Drew and I'm the guy behind 48 by 48.

{My dad and I on Table Rock in Boise, Idaho}

I'm 33 years old, have a tri-colored beagle named Elli, and am addicted to cereal, coffee, Clif® Bars, and trail mix. I've worked all over the U.S. in a variety of service oriented jobs and I love doing a variety of different activities both indoors and outdoors. I hold to a minimalist lifestyle and I wake up every morning to pursue life, liberty, and joy.

I'm excited that you have an interest in this adventure. I don't want to bog you down with too much information, so I've done my best to condensed the main points of the journey into the bullet points below. If you would like to read the entire story behind the 48 by 48 project, I recommend you start with these four articles (What is..., Why pt1, Why pt2, How will...).

Also, if you like what you see, please send me a note, subscribe to the blog, or even join the Back Pack to help support the adventure.

-  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -

What is 48 by 48? 48 by 48 is the name of my plan to travel to the forty-eight contiguous United States in forty-eight weeks doing a variety of volunteer/service work in each state.


What's the Mission of 48by48? To lend a hand to people and organizations of all ages, backgrounds, and affiliations while promoting a “Service to Others” lifestyle.


What are the Primary Goals of 48by48?

  1. Travel to all 48 contiguous states in 48 weeks.

  2. Serve / Volunteer in each state for a minimum of 5 days or 25 hours.

  3. Lead by example in the “Service to Others” (STO) lifestyle.

  4. Connect people to local organizations and connect organizations to local people (needs).

  5. Promote the STO lifestyle.

  6. Create a variety of resources to help others accomplish the STO lifestyle.

What does the “Service to Others” lifestyle look like? The identifying marks of a person who exemplifies the STO lifestyle is one who:

  1. Cares deeply about the needs of others.

  2. Actively looks for ways to serve others.

  3. Has a good balance of realism and creativity when helping to meet the needs of others.

  4. Spends ones thoughts thinking about how to see others succeed.

  5. Using their influence to bring about positive outcomes in the people and organizations they serve.


While showering one Tuesday morning, I had an epiphany.

This inspirational thought was the product of months of me trying to figure out what I love to do most in life. It boiled down to three things: traveling, technology, and helping others. As I was shampooing my hair, I continued to dwell on those pursuits. Suddenly, my mind shouted out, “why not travel the United States, volunteering as you go, to promote a lifestyle of service to others and use technology to tell the story?”

So that's exactly what I decided to do! (Click here to read the original blog.)

Video Highlights

Daryn Kagan Interview

KSDK, St. Louis News Story

The Dallas Morning News Highlight

Voice of America Feature

Interview with WCPO Cincinnati

In the press

Readers Digest, May 2011 - Best Sojourner in America (pg. 93)

Huffington Post Impact Page - "A Year of Giving, Idaho Man Volunteering In 48 States In 48 Weeks"

Baltimore Sun - "Volunteer Takes His Service Cross-Country"

Waco Tribune - "48 States, 48 Weeks: One man's mission to serve humanity comes through Waco"

Hartford Courant - "Connecticut Latest On Volunteer's Map"

Press Pass subscription needed to view the following:

Worthington Daily Globe - "Volunteering By The Numbers: Drew Johnson sets out to serve in 48 states in 48 weeks"

Fargo-Moorhead Forum - "Traveler Volunteering In 48 States"

In the blogs