History

The 11-story 820 South Michigan Avenue building was constructed in 1972 as the headquarters for the Johnson Publishing Company, home to Ebony and Jet magazines, and it was the first major modern downtown Chicago building built by an African American. The original façade was walnut travertine marble, it currently features a granite façade. Columbia College Chicago acquired the building in 2010.

In 2011, Columbia College established a $10 million funding initiative, the Johnson Legacy Project, designed to preserve the legacy of John H. and Eunice W. Johnson. Funds raised from this campaign will go toward creating an endowment to support the maintenance of the John H. and Eunice W. Johnson Center; establish scholarship funds including entrepreneurship, fashion studies, journalism, and marketing; preserve the EBONY and JET signs atop the building; and create and maintain the John H. Johnson exhibit on the 11th floor.


Quick Facts

  • Name: John H. and Eunice W. Johnson Center
  • Address: 820 South Michigan Avenue
  • Size: 110,000 square feet, 11 stories
  • Architect: John Moutoussamy
  • Original Name: Johnson Publishing Company
  • Subsequent Name: The Johnson Building
  • Acquired by College: 2010