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Johnny M. Brown

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Information about Johnny M. Brown

Profile image of Johnny M. Brown

Profession

Category:
BusinessMakers
Occupation(s):
Retail Entrepreneur

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Brown
Favorite Food:
Chicken, Fish
Favorite Time of Year:
None
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Northern California, Mexico
Favorite Quote:
Love Yourself As Much As You Love Your Country.

Birthplace

Born:
4/6/1943
Birth Location:
Gallion, Alabama

Profession

Category:
BusinessMakers
Occupation(s):
Retail Entrepreneur

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Brown
Favorite Food:
Chicken, Fish
Favorite Time of Year:
None
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Northern California, Mexico
Favorite Quote:
Love Yourself As Much As You Love Your Country.

Birthplace

Born:
4/6/1943
Birth Location:
Gallion
See how Johnny M. Brown is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

Businessman Johnny Mack Brown, of the Brown Tire Corporation, was the fifth independent-and the first African American-Goodyear dealer in the country. He was born in 1943 in rural Alabama. His father, Abe, was a sharecropper and his mother, Josephine, did housework in the South. Brown was the seventh of 12 children. Brown and his siblings were also hired out to pick and chop cotton in the 1960s for $2 per day. After his father's death in 1962, Brown and his brothers decided to finish college and go into business in order to take of their mother.

Brown graduated with a B.A. from Chicago State College and then earned a Master's degree from Governor's State College. He and his five brothers pooled together $19,000 to start a business, but they could not, because they were turned down for a Small Business Administration Loan. Brown took a job teaching as well as a job at Goodyear Tire changing tires. The Goodyear store was losing money and the time was right for Brown, who was able to use the money he and his brothers had saved. In 1970, the store changed from Goodyear to Johnny Brown's Tire Company.

As President and Chairman of the Board for the Brown Tire Corporation, Brown saw his business expand from one store to a large corporation with multiple Chicago locations in addition to stores in Atlanta, Georgia and Cleveland, Ohio.

Aside from his busy career, Brown still found to help the community. He was honored with various awards for his continued support and involvement with the community and, most importantly, with children. Brown had twin sons, Johnny Jr. and Joshua, also of Chicago.

See how Johnny M. Brown is related to other HistoryMakers
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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Johnny M. Brown's interview
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Johnny M. Brown describes his mother's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Johnny M. Brown describes his father's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Johnny M. Brown lists his favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Johnny M. Brown describes his grandfather, Mack Mullen
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Johnny M. Brown talks about his father's entrepreneurial spirit, pt. 1
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Johnny M. Brown talks about his father's entrepreneurial spirit, pt. 2
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Johnny M. Brown describes how his family was able to finance their college education
  • Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Johnny M. Brown talks about living with his aunt and uncle in Tuscaloosa, Alabama
  • Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Johnny M. Brown talks about returning to his family after living in Tuscaloosa, Alabama
  • Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Johnny M. Brown talks about his teachers at U.S. Jones High School in Demopolis, Alabama
  • Tape: 1 Story: 12 - Johnny M. Brown talks about his experience at U.S. Jones High School in Demopolis, Alabama
  • Tape: 1 Story: 13 - Johnny M. Brown describes moving to Chicago, Illinois to attend Chicago State University
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Johnny M. Brown talks about finding a job and enrolling at Chicago State University in Illinois
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Johnny M. Brown talks about the importance of getting an education
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Johnny M. Brown describes his experience at Chicago State University in Chicago, Illinois
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Johnny M. Brown describes his involvement with the Civil Rights Movement
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Johnny M. Brown describes how integration affected black-owned businesses
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Johnny M. Brown talks about his marriage to Jane Mall Brown
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Johnny M. Brown describes starting his first store with Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company
  • Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Johnny M. Brown talks about working with HistoryMaker Dempsey Travis
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Johnny M. Brown talks about his current tire stores
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Johnny M. Brown describes his experience with Arthur Rubloff
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Johnny M. Brown talks about the problems faced by black-owned businesses in Chicago, Illinois
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Johnny M. Brown talks about the importance of passing businesses on to children
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Johnny M. Brown talks about Goodyear Tire's change in focus from dealers to mass merchandisers
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Johnny M. Brown talks about the decline in black Goodyear Tire dealerships
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Johnny M. Brown talks about the difficulty black-owned businesses have in establishing a credit line
  • Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Johnny M. Brown shares his philosophy regarding his employees
  • Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Johnny M. Brown describes the challenges of employing automobile mechanics
  • Tape: 3 Story: 10 - Johnny M. Brown describes the importance of adapting to the needs of the market
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Johnny M. Brown describes his childhood experience
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Johnny M. Brown describes his childhood home
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Johnny M. Brown describes the sights, sounds, and smells of his childhood
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Johnny M. Brown describes marrying Jane Mall Brown in 1972
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Johnny M. Brown describes his values
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Johnny M. Brown describes his experience as a single father of twin sons
  • Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Johnny M. Brown talks about HistoryMaker Robert Starks' Living Legends program
  • Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Johnny M. Brown describes his motivation to work hard
  • Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Johnny M. Brown talks about his greatest accomplishment
  • Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Johnny M. Brown discusses the need for politicians who represent black business owners, pt. 1
  • Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Johnny M. Brown discusses the need for politicians who represent black business owners, pt. 2
  • Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Johnny M. Brown describes his reaction to Chicago Mayor Harold Washington's election
  • Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Johnny M. Brown talks about the business of HistoryMaker Mel Farr, pt. 1
  • Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Johnny M. Brown talks about the business of HistoryMaker Mel Farr, pt. 2
  • Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Johnny M. Brown talks about adapting to changing trends in the tire industry
  • Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Johnny M. Brown reflects upon his legacy, pt. 1
  • Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Johnny M. Brown reflects upon his legacy, pt. 2
  • Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Johnny M. Brown talks about the difficulty of being a black entrepreneur, pt. 1
  • Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Johnny M. Brown talks about the difficulty of being a black entrepreneur, pt. 2
  • Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Johnny M. Brown talks about the persistence of racial prejudice over the course of his life
  • Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Johnny M. Brown talks about the books he wants to write
  • Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Johnny M. Brown talks about the activities he enjoys
  • Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Johnny M. Brown narrates his photographs.