Albert Wesley Johnson

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Albert Wesley Johnson
Born (1923-10-18)October 18, 1923
Insinger, Saskatchewan, Canada
Died November 9, 2010(2010-11-09) (aged 87)
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Nationality Canadian
Alma mater University of Toronto
Harvard University
Occupation Public servant, Civil servant
Awards Order of Canada

Albert Wesley ("Al") Johnson, CC (October 18, 1923 – November 9, 2010) was a Canadian civil servant, former president of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, professor in the department of political science at the University of Toronto, and author.[1]

Born in Insinger, Saskatchewan, he received a Master's in public administration (MPA) from the University of Toronto and an MPA and a PhD from Harvard University. He was deputy treasurer of Saskatchewan from 1952 until 1964. In 1964 he became assistant deputy minister of finance for the federal government. From 1975 until 1982 he was president of the CBC. He subsequently taught at Queen's University and the University of Toronto.[1]

In 1980 he was made an Officer of the Order of Canada and was promoted to Companion in 1996 in recognition of his "outstanding career as a public servant, university professor and consultant on post-secondary education, social policy and public management both nationally and internationally".[2]

Johnson wrote the 2004 book Dream No Little Dreams, A Biography of the Douglas Government of Saskatchewan, 1944–1961 (ISBN 0-8020-8633-0) [1] for which he was awarded the Canadian Political Science Association's Donald Smiley Prize in 2005.[3]

After leaving the federal civil service he embarked on an international career:[4]

  • Special Advisor on National Provincial Fiscal Arrangements for the International Monetary Fund 1988
  • Head of Mission on Administrative Modernization for the Canadian International Development Agency 1991
  • Senior advisor to South Africa/Canada Program on Governance 1992
  • Commissioner of South Africa’s Presidential Review Commission on the Public Service 1996

Returning to Canada in 1999, Johnson became special chair in public policy to the Government of Saskatchewan.[4]

Johnson died in Ottawa at age 87. He was survived by his wife, Ruth (née Hardy), whom he married in 1946, four children and one granddaughter.[5]

Awards and honours[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Elizabeth Lumley (2004). Canadian Who's Who. University of Toronto Press. 
  2. ^ "Order of Canada citation". 
  3. ^ "Donald Smiley Prize". Canadian Political Science Association. Retrieved 22 January 2016. 
  4. ^ a b Johnson, Andrew T.W. "About Al Johnson - Biography". Archived from the original on 13 November 2010. Retrieved 2010-11-09. 
  5. ^ "Former CBC president Al Johnson dies". CBC News. Retrieved 22 January 2016. 
Government offices
Preceded by
Laurent Picard
President of the
Canadian Broadcasting Corporation

Succeeded by
Pierre Juneau