Mr. Thomas H. Johnson
Chief Executive Officer, The Taffrail Group, LLC
Mr. Johnson has served as the CEO of The Taffrail Group since its inception. He also currently serves as an independent outside director of two public companies: Coca-Cola European Partners, the world’s largest soft drink bottler; and Universal Corporation, the world’s largest tobacco processor and grower with operations in 35 countries. He previously served as an independent director of Superior Essex, GenOn Corporation, ModusLink Global Solutions, and Tumi Holdings.
Prior to the Taffrail Group, Mr. Johnson’s 35 year career included 16 years as a public company CEO with extensive international experience. From 1976 to 1989 he held a number of management positions with Mead Corporation including President of its Paperboard Division and Director, Strategic Planning and Corporate Development. From 1989 to 1997 he headed Riverwood International Corporation (and its predecessor company, Manville Forest Products Corporation) as President and CEO. From 1997 to 2005 he served as Chairman and CEO of Chesapeake Corporation. During his career, Mr. Johnson established and managed subsidiaries and joint ventures in Asia-Pacific, South America, and Europe, with operations in over 40 countries. Major industries served include multinational consumer goods producers and pharmaceutical firms.
He holds a Bachelor of Industrial Engineering degree from the Georgia Institute of Technology. He also received a Master in Business Administration from Harvard University, where he was the recipient of the Sybron Fellowship. In 1996 he was named a member of The Academy of Distinguished Engineering Graduates of the Georgia Institute of Technology. In 1999 the State Bureau of Foreign Experts, Peoples Republic of China, awarded him the Marco Polo Award for his work in support of U.S. trade and business development in China.
Prior to his business career, Mr. Johnson served as a commissioned officer in the United States Navy.