O.B. Johnson came to Forney in the summer of 1956 with his wife, Merle, and son, Jim, (Dr. Jim Johnson). Prior to coming to Forney, he had been superintendent of schools in McLeod, Queen City, and Marietta, Texas, and had been involved in education for over 20 years.
He attended schools in Atlanta, Texas, and graduated with a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree from East Texas State Teachers’ College in Commerce, Texas.
Some of the highlights of Mr. Johnson’s 16-year career as school superintendent include:
Built the first new elementary school in Forney in 1968, the building which served as Forney Intermediate School before becoming O. B. Johnson Elementary.
Built the first school cafeteria in the history of Forney ISD when the first elementary (now Johnson Elementary) was built in 1968.
Made additions to the high school (current administration building) without a tax increase.
Supported a strong academic program.
Supported an outstanding athletic program.
Saw that the Forney school system attracted and kept outstanding teachers.
Organized and promoted Homecoming activities in 1956.
Served as superintendent with the longest tenure of any superintendent to date.
His civic and community activities include the following:
Was the first president of the newly-organized Forney Lions Club.
A member of the Masonic lodge.
A lifelong member of the First Baptist Church, where he was a deacon and a Sunday school teacher.
Mr. Johnson’s motto was “Students, faculty, administration and community working in harmony to have the best school system possible with the available resources.”
His primary interest was to better the community through better schools.
In 1972, Mr. Johnson retired from academic life and went to work at Sanger-Harris (now Foley’s) for ten years. He passed away on October 30, 1987.