One of Art Center’s newer Trustees, Charles Floyd Johnson has a long-standing and successful career as a producer in the entertainment industry. He first started becoming familiar with the College during August of last year, became a Trustee earlier this year, and is looking forward to assisting Art Center in a number of different capacities, from outreach to fundraising.
“I came out for a graduation and was so impressed with Art Center, its students, and its plans for the future, that I said this is the place for me,” said Johnson, who points to being particularly impressed by the College’s Strategic Plan. “It felt to me like a very forward-thinking agenda, in terms of both making the school more user-friendly for the students and also making Art Center more dominant. Art Center already has a wonderful reputation in so many of its areas, but the College is interested in becoming even stronger.”
Johnson is currently serving as executive producer of the CBS television drama NCIS, which celebrates its 200th episode on February 7. He is also one of the producers of Red Tails, the Lucasfilm feature about the Tuskegee Airmen, America’s first all African-American aerial unit who both helped bring down the Nazi war machine during World War II and challenged racial stereotypes back home. Defying the odds, the film starring an all African-American cast — including Terrence Howard, Cuba Gooding Jr., Nate Parker and David Oleyowo — debuted last weekend in second place by bringing in nearly $19 million at the box office.
“It’s a story that has resonance with a lot of people,” said Johnson of the film which he and fellow Red Tails producer George Lucas had been trying to get off the ground for 23 years. “These young men were not encouraged to fly for their country. They were not expected to succeed. But they triumphed over adversity. These were men who fought racism at home and fascism abroad. They did it successfully and they were heroes, not victims.”