Marshall Johnson, IDSA
Marshall Johnson was born in Long Island, New York in 1938. He became interested in industrial design in 1952 after reading a US government career pamphlet. He graduated from Rhode Island School of Design in 1960 with a BFA in industrial design and a minor in art education.
Johnson became the first staff designer hired by Black and Decker, working seven years in Towson, MD as package engineer/product designer. In 1967 he moved to Pittsburgh to join the Aluminum Company of America (ALCOA)'s corporate design staff. He designed an oceanographic ship, the Alcoa Seaprobe, furniture and numerous products using aluminum. In 1971, he was transferred to ALCOA's cookware subsidiary Wear-Ever Industries, Inc. in Ohio, where he designed small appliances such as the first hot air corn popper, electric food gun (Super Shooter), kabob cooker (Kabob-It and Kabob 2) to name a few. He also designed cutlery for ALCOA's Alcas/Cutco Division in Olean, New York.
ALCOA sold Wear-Ever to Wesray Products, Inc., in 1982. A year later, Wesray acquired the Proctor-Silex Division of SCM Corporation, a manufacturer of kitchen appliances, and changed its name to Proctor-Silex, Inc. In 1986 it became WearEver-ProctorSilex, Inc. In 1988 the company was in turn acquired by NACCO Industries, Inc., a conglomerate, and moved to Glenn Allen, Virginia. The cookware division and Wear-Ever brand were sold to Mirro/Newell in January 1989. NACCO Industries, Inc., purchased Hamilton Beach, Inc., from Glen Dimplex of Ireland in 1990 and consolidated as Hamilton Beach/Proctor-Silex, Inc. Johnson stayed with Proctor-Silex through these various mergers until his retirement in 2001.
He designed kitchen electrics and product graphics and provided custom product models for more than 45 housewares industry shows before retiring. Johnson's professional interests led him to serve on the boards of Goodwill Industries, Southern Ohio Speech and Hearing Center and IDSA, in addition to teaching Project Business to middle schools students for 10 years.