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Thomas Stephen JOHNSON


1949 - 2016 Obituary Condolences
JOHNSON, Thomas Stephen Thomas Stephen "Steve" Johnson, age 66, of Atlanta, Georgia, died on September 21, 2016 following complications from squamous cell skin cancer. Born in Kentucky, Steve resided in the Atlanta area for most of his life. He graduated from Decatur High School in 1966, earned a B.S. in Industrial Management from the Georgia Institute of Technology in 1971 and later received an MBA from Georgia State University in 1973. While completing his studies he enrolled in the Army ROTC program and attained the rank of Captain before starting a career in banking. Steve was a lifelong member of the banking community, beginning his career at Trust Company of Georgia in the 70's and then moving on to National Bank of Georgia. In his early days he was also in politics, becoming Mayor of Decatur (GA) by age 27. After 15 years in the industry he opened his own consulting firm named T. Stephen Johnson & Associates, Inc. that would go on to start over 100 banks throughout the country during its 25 years in operation. Perhaps his greatest credit came in 1996 with the founding of NetBank, a pioneer in Internet banking, where he acted as the company's first Chairman. He was also the founder of Directo, Inc., an innovator in the debit prepaid card business. Recently, Steve continued his banking legacy by founding the consulting firm Brightlane Partners LLC with his son Chris. Mr. Johnson previously served as a member of the Board of Trustees of the Scheller College of Business, the Georgia Tech Athletic Association Board of Trustees, the Carter Center Board of Councilors, the State Board of Human Resources, the Stone Mountain Memorial Association Board (20 years), as well as numerous community bank Boards. He was also instrumental in bringing the Lasershow and the 1996 Summer Olympics to Stone Mountain Park. He is survived by his wife, Julie, mother Sibyl, children Chris and Liz and their mother Mary, granddaughters Ryleigh and Rheagan, brothers Bill, Bob, and Spencer, nephew Xander, and son-in-law Chris. Steve was predeceased by his father Thomas Johnson and his brother Samuel Johnson. The family will greet guests Tuesday, September 27, 2016 at 10 a.m. at Roswell United Methodist Church (814 Mimosa Blvd., Roswell, GA 30075) with a service celebrating Steve's life beginning at 11 a.m. Donations may be made to the in lieu of flowers (http://main.acsevents.org/goto/tstephenjohnson).
Published in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Sept. 25, 2016
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