Albert Johnston, Severna Park activist

  • Albert Johnston
Albert Johnston (Baltimore Sun )
November 14, 2012|By Jacques Kelly, The Baltimore Sun

Albert M. Johnston, a Severna Park activist who closely followed zoning and planning issues who was also a retired labor attorney and Westinghouse Electric executive, died Nov. 10 at his home. Family members said no medical cause of death has been determined. He was 88.

Born in Lincoln, Neb., he earned two degrees from the University of Nebraska, one in electrical engineering and a bachelor of arts. He was also a Harvard Law School graduate.

He served in World War II from 1943 to 1946 in the Army's Signal Corps. He also served in the Korean War.

Mr. Johnston worked with his father in a law practice in Nebraska and after moving to Maryland about 1960 joined the Westinghouse Electric Corp. He had been director of technical recruitment for the Bettis Atomic Power Division and also worked in compensation, employment and labor relations.

Family members said he later held executive posts at ITT Electro-Physics Laboratories, the Walworth Co., the Roper Eastern Group, Kleinert's Inc. and LeRoy Industries. He was a Brierwood Shoe Corp. board member.

Mr. Johnston was three times president of the Greater Severna Park Council. He also was president of the Ben Oaks Civic Association and the Severna Forest Community Association.

"Al Johnston was a long-time, well respected community activist who worked tirelessly to improve, not only the Greater Severna Park community, but the entire County, as well," said County Executive John Leopold. " He was a respected voice on a great number of County issues, particularly zoning, the General Development Plan, Severna Park High School, and School Board selection issues."

He was also a past president and legislative member of the Maryland AARP chapter.

A Mason, he belonged to the Lincoln Lodge. He also belonged to the Sigma Chi Fraternity and was a deacon and ruling elder of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.).

He was a past president of the Washington, D.C., Personnel Association. He belonged to the Electric and Electronic Engineers, American Society of Mechanical Engineers.

A memorial service will be held at 10 a.m. Thursday at the Woods Memorial Presbyterian Church, 611 B&A Boulevard in Severna Park, where he was an active member.

Survivors include three sons, David Johnston of Laurel, Roger Johnston of Severna Park and Eric Johnston of Ellicott City; a brother, James Johnston of Ogden, Utah; and a sister, Elizabeth Jones of Minneapolis, Minn. His wife of 43 years, the former Betty Lillian Garbe, died in 2003.

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