Roy W. Johnson

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This article is about the politician and college chancellor. For others with similar names, see Roy Johnson (disambiguation).

Roy W. Johnson (born December 31, 1945 in Tuscaloosa County) is the former chancellor of the Alabama College System, a former state legislator and Speaker Pro Tem of the Alabama House of Representatives.

A Vietnam veteran who served in the Navy from 1964 until 1967, Johnson received his Bachelor of Science in Education in 1969 and his Master of Arts in Public School Administration in 1972, both from the University of Alabama.

Johnson was elected Speaker Pro Tem of the Alabama House of Representatives in 1974. He served in the legislature until 1990. In 1976 he became a high school principal, and also held that position until 1990. In 1992 he was named president of Opelika State Technical College. On July 1, 2002, Johnson was named chancellor of the Alabama College System, which consists of 19 community colleges, seven technical colleges, two junior colleges, one senior institution and a statewide industrial training institute.

In 2006, an investigation by the Birmingham News uncovered corruption in Alabama College System, showing that 43 legislators, their close relatives and businesses received contracts and jobs from the state's two-year colleges. Johnson's ex-wife, their children and their spouses were given positions at several two-year colleges around the state, and were paid for doing little to no work. The newspaper investigation led to charges against the Johnsons by the U. S. District Attorney Alice Martin.

On January 24, 2008, Johnson agreed to plead guilty in U.S. District Court to 15 counts of bribery, conspiracy, witness tampering and obstruction in a criminal scheme that tapped more than $18 million in taxpayer money. As part of the deal with prosecutors, Johnson accepted full responsibility for more than $300,000 in payments made to his two adult children and their spouses by two-year colleges and contractors seeking his influence. In return for his plea, his children will not be prosecuted.

Johnson gave his guilty pleas to all 15 counts to U. S. District Court Judge Karon Bowdre on March 31, 2008. Johnson faces more than 25 years in prison and more than $2 million in fines, however it is expected that the term and fines will be less because of Johnson's plea agreement, in which he will be a witness in other cases related to the two-year college system. Johnson was sentenced November 18, 2010 to 6 years and 6 months in prison.


  • Blackledge, Brett J. (April 1, 2008), "Alabama two-year colleges' former Chancellor Roy Johnson pleads guilty in kickback scheme." Birmingham News.
  • Blackledge, Brett J. (January 24, 2008), "Former Alabama two-year chancellor pleading guilty to 15 counts." Birmingham News.
  • Faulk, Kent (November 16, 2010) "Federal prosecutors recommend former Alabama two-year college chancellor Roy Johnson be sentenced to 90 months in prison." Birmingham News

External links

  • Roy Johnson bio at National Council of State Directors of Community Colleges