Bryan Johnston Remembered

A skilled negotiator and administrator who cared deeply about education and human services, Bryan M. Johnston died in his sleep on June 7, 2008, at the age of 59.

Johnston served as associate dean of the College of Law from 1989 to 1991. He was a founding faculty member of the College of Law’s Center for Dispute Resolution and served as director of the center from 1986 to 1989. In addition, he served as interim president of the University from 1997 to 1998.

"To the many people who knew Bryan through his mediation practice and his work in academia, politics and public policy, he was a respected and valued colleague," said Willamette University President M. Lee Pelton. "To hundreds more in the Willamette and Salem communities, he was a trusted and beloved friend."

Johnston was born Feb.17, 1949, in Chicago. He earned his undergraduate degree from Northern Illinois University and his law degree from Loyola University. In addition to his service to Willamette, Johnston’s academic experience included terms as adjunct professor at the law schools of the University of New Mexico, University of Bridgeport, University of Oregon and Pepperdine University. His state service included terms in the Oregon House from 1995 to 1999.

Johnston also served as interim director of the state Department of Human Services. Just prior to his death, he had been named president of Saint Martin’s University in Washington state.