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Eric Johnson

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Information about Eric Johnson

Profile image of Eric Johnson

Profession

Category:
BusinessMakers
Occupation(s):
Corporate Chief Executive

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Blue
Favorite Food:
Seafood Fettuccini Pasta
Favorite Time of Year:
Spring
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Florida
Favorite Quote:
Profit.

Birthplace

Born:
3/29/1951
Birth Location:
Chicago, Illinois

Profession

Category:
BusinessMakers
Occupation(s):
Corporate Chief Executive

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Blue
Favorite Food:
Seafood Fettuccini Pasta
Favorite Time of Year:
Spring
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Florida
Favorite Quote:
Profit.

Birthplace

Born:
3/29/1951
Birth Location:
Chicago
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Biography

A native of Chicago, Illinois, Eric Johnson, who was born on March 29, 1951, grew up learning about the business world. As the son of groundbreaking entrepreneur George Johnson, founder of Johnson Hair Products, Eric Johnson was part of Chicago's black elite. Johnson got his first business experience working in his father’s hair product factory at the age of eight.

After graduating from Chicago's Laboratory School, Johnson attended Babson College in Boston before obtaining an M.B.A. from the University of Chicago. Johnson began his career in business at Procter & Gamble before joining the management team of his family's company. He then effectively used this experience when he took over management of Johnson Hair Products.

As president, he increased sales and Johnson's Hair Products stock was the seventh best-performing stock on the American Stock Exchange in 1991. Later, Johnson acquired Baldwin Ice Cream Company, which he merged with Richardson Foods to become Baldwin/Richardson Foods. In 2000, Baldwin/Richardson Foods' annual profits were around $62 million. The company is also one the largest African American owned businesses in the food industry. Johnson is active in civic activities and serves on numerous boards including the Boy Scouts of America, the Rochester Institute of Technology and Chicago State University. In 1998, Johnson was elected to the board of directors of Lincoln National Corporation.

See how Eric Johnson is related to other HistoryMakers
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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Eric Johnson interview
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Eric Johnson's favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Eric Johnson describes life as the young child of an entrepreneur
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Eric Johnson discusses the origins of his family's business, Johnson Products
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Eric Johnson reveals the home life of an entrepreneurial family
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Eric Johnson describes his father's approach to life and business
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Eric Johnson describes his mother's personality
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Eric Johnson talks about his and his siblings' involvement in the family business
  • Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Eric Johnson continues to describe his siblings
  • Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Eric Johnson recalls childhood memories
  • Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Eric Johnson remembers his childhood Chicago, Illinois community, Chatham
  • Tape: 1 Story: 12 - Eric Johnson considers his childhood personality
  • Tape: 1 Story: 13 - Eric Johnson describes his school life
  • Tape: 1 Story: 14 - Eric Johnson remembers Chicago, Illinois in the 1960s
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Eric Johnson describes the role of Chicago businesspeople in the Civil Rights Movement
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Eric Johnson explains why Chicago has many successful African American businesses
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Eric Johnson talks about the legacy of Chicago in the black business community
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Eric Johnson discusses Johnson Products Company's going public
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Eric Johnson discusses the relationship between Johnson Products and 'Soul Train'
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Eric Johnson explains that Johnson Products faced increased competition in the public market
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Eric Johnson discusses the early success of Johnson Products Company
  • Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Eric Johnson discusses the peak of Johnson Products Company's success
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Eric Johnson discusses Johnson Products's expansion into Nigeria
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Eric Johnson considers Johnson Products Company's success
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Eric Johnson discusses his time at Babson College
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Eric Johnson discusses the changing marketplace of hair care products
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Eric Johnson talks about working at Procter & Gamble
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Eric Johnson discusses his personal approach to success
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Eric Johnson explains his decision to attend business school
  • Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Eric Johnson discusses his return to the Johnson family business
  • Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Eric Johnson describes his experience in the Johnson family business
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Eric Johnson decides to leave Johnson Products Company despite leading it to success
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Eric Johnson explains his entry into the ice cream industry
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Eric Johnson describes his success in the food industry
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Eric Johnson reflects on his career success in business
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Eric Johnsons considers his personal legacy
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Eric Johnson discusses his wife's role in his business endeavors
  • Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Photo - Eric Johnson with his father, entrepreneur George Johnson, ca. 1953
  • Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Photo - Eric Johnson holds a younger sibling, ca. 1955
  • Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Photo - Studio portrait of Eric Johnson in grade school, ca. late 1950s
  • Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Photo - Eric Johnson playing basketball for the University of Chicago Lab School, Chicago, Illinois, ca. late 1960s
  • Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Photo - High school portrait of Eric Johnson from the University of Chicago Lab School, Chicago, Illinois, ca. late 1960s
  • Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Eric Johnson shares hopes for his family
  • Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Eric Johnson considers the significance of business ownership amongst African Americans
  • Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Eric Johnson expresses his concern for the African American community
  • Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Eric Johnson offers advice to young people
  • Tape: 5 Story: 10 - Photo - Studio portrait of Eric Johnson as a teenager, ca. 1960s
  • Tape: 5 Story: 11 - Photo - Eric Johnson with an unidentified childhood friend, ca. 1950s
  • Tape: 5 Story: 12 - Photo - Birth certificate of Eric Johnson, March 29, 1951
  • Tape: 5 Story: 13 - Photo - Eric Johnson as a young boy, ca. 1955-1956
  • Tape: 5 Story: 14 - Photo - Eric Johnson with his wife, Pam Johnson
  • Tape: 5 Story: 15 - Photo - Eric Johnson with Rev. Jesse Jackson at a Rainbow Coalition event
  • Tape: 5 Story: 16 - Photo - Eric Johnson with two unidentified men
  • Tape: 5 Story: 17 - Photo - Eric Johnson with his wife and family
  • Tape: 5 Story: 18 - Photo - Studio portrait of Eric Johnson
  • Tape: 5 Story: 19 - Photo - Eric Johnson in an article from 'Crain's Chicago Business' magazine, Chicago, Illinois, ca. 1985-1991
  • Tape: 5 Story: 20 - Photo - Eric Johnson shaking hands with Nelson Mandela, ca. 1990s
  • Tape: 5 Story: 21 - Photo - Eric Johnson with his extended family