Category Partners’ Former Chief Executive Officer Mac Johnson Passes
UNITED STATES - It is with a heavy heart that we learned of the passing of Mac Johnson, a produce marketing icon. He passed away on December 12, at the age of 74, leaving behind a professional and personal impact in the industry that will be felt for years to come.
Johnson joined Category Partners as Chief Executive Officer at its founding in 2008. He spent the better part of a decade working and growing with clients and retailers, investing his time, knowledge, and experience to create a powerful team, all of whom will deeply miss him.
He ended his distinguished career at Category Partners in 2017, retiring to the Atlanta, Georgia, area to be closer to his family and to spend more time on the golf course than in the Board room.
Johnson stepped into the produce world in 2000 when he joined the US Potato Board (now Potatoes USA) as Senior Vice President of Marketing. In this role, he spent eight years building programs and resources in support of potato growers and marketers across the United States.
Prior to this, Johnson was a Senior Marketing Executive at Tom’s Foods for over 17 years. He interfaced with all departments within the company and worked closely with 700 distributors, operating over 2,000 sales routes.
At least half of Johnson's life was powered by either peanuts or potatoes, a release from Category Partners shared.
“Mac and I shared many a plane trip and meal together as we ran distribution meetings all over the country. Under his leadership, Tom’s experienced growth through new product innovation, branding, and packaging upgrades. He was an absolute professional and he will always be my friend,” commented Jerry Killough, former Vice President Sales at Tom’s Foods.
Johnson is survived by his wife Joann, his sister Susan, his adult son Keith, and his grandchildren Addison and Carson.
Keith Johnson, Sales Director of Roboyo, said a few words regarding his father.
“My dad never knew a stranger. He was a friend to everyone, a mentor to many, and he magically balanced his professional confidence with a disarming humble nature. The lives and careers of many, including mine, were shaped by this very special man. He will be missed but never forgotten,” he shared.
Due to the current travel climate and holiday season, a celebration of life will be scheduled for early in the new year. If you would like to provide photos, stories, or would like to be notified when the event is scheduled, please email here.
Johnson spent most of his life helping to distribute high-quality affordable food across America. If you would like to honor him, please visit here to provide a donation for those who are hungry.
We extend our condolences to Mac Johnson’s family and friends.