Johnson Publishing Co

Publisher of Ebony Shrinks in Search of Growth
February 10, 2015

Johnson Publishing, parent company of Ebony magazine, has the weighty title of "curator of the African-American experience." But the corporate base supporting that role keeps shrinking.

The company's recent decision to sell its historic photo collection is the latest example of downsizing, following the cancellation of Jet magazine's print version, the sale of Johnson's 11-story Michigan Avenue headquarters and the paring of its workforce by a third since 2007. Now it's trying to sublet one of two floors it rented at its new digs, after giving up a third earlier.

Johnson Publishing Company Selling Iconic 70-Year-Old Photo Archive
January 26, 2015

In what many see as a heartbreaking development, Johnson Publishing Company, the esteemed African American owned publisher of Ebony, announced plans to sell its photo archive of five million photos, reports The Chicago Tribune.

The iconic collection of photos spans 70 years of African-American history, culture and life, including a 1969 Pulitzer Prize winning photo of Coretta Scott King taken at Martin Luther King Jr.'s funeral.

The company says it would like to get $40 million for the collection.

Five New Members Elected to the MPA Board at AMC
October 16, 2012

Five senior-level executives from magazine media companies have been elected to the Board of Directors of MPA – The Association of Magazine Media, it was announced at the start of the 2012 AMC – The Magazine Media Conference in San Francisco, CA, by Mary Berner, President & CEO, MPA.

Ebony and Jet Magazine Founder John H. Johnson, an Arkansas Native, on New US Postage Stamp
January 31, 2012

Publisher John H. Johnson, who created Ebony and Jet magazines, will be honored on this year's Black Heritage stamp issued by the U.S. Postal Service. A Tuesday ceremony is planned in Johnson's hometown of Arkansas City, where he lived until moving to Chicago with his family at age 15.

Johnson founded Johnson Publishing Co. on a $500 loan using his mother's furniture as collateral. At the time, he was working as a clerk at a black-owned life insurance company.

Profile: Talking with Johnson Publishing chairman Linda Johnson Rice
January 4, 2012

Linda Johnson Rice is chairman of the multimedia company that publishes Ebony, a lifestyle and general-interest magazine for African-Americans, and Jet, a newsmagazine.
Her father founded Johnson Publishing in 1942 with Negro Digest. Rice grew up in the publishing world after being adopted by John and Eunice Johnson. As a young girl, she traveled with her mother to fashion shows in Paris and Milan, being exposed to the finer things in life, as well as a strong work ethic.
Rice, 53, is divorced and has a daughter.

Herbert Nipson dies at 95; helped broaden Ebony magazine's audience
December 29, 2011

The journalist, who rose to become executive editor, helped the magazine move beyond its urban base to cover issues relevant to rural blacks and to branch out into sports, entertainment and the arts. When Herbert Nipson joined Ebony magazine's editorial staff in 1949, the publication, founded just four years earlier in Chicago, had a target readership of urban African Americans, and its stories reflected that sensibility. But as the civil rights movement surged to the forefront of American consciousness, Nipson helped push the magazine to a broader audience, covering issues important to rural African Americans and branching out into

'Ebony,' 'Jet' Parent Takes A Bold New Tack
September 22, 2011

Johnson Publishing Co., the black American icon based in Chicago, is hiring. It's a sharp turnaround for a company that saw circulation numbers and revenue for its flagship Ebony and Jet magazines plummet over a number of years. Those numbers are on the rise now, and company officials say questions about Johnson Publishing's ability to survive the turmoil in the media industry are no longer relevant.

The CEO of Johnson Publishing, former White House Social Secretary Desiree Rogers, has been on the job now for just over a year.

Magic Johnson in Talks to Buy Publisher of Ebony, Jet Magazines
February 15, 2010

Retired NBA star Earvin Magic Johnson is in talks to purchase Johnson Publishing Co., home to Ebony and Jet magazines and an archive of iconic photographs documenting U.S. black life for more than half a century.

“There have been discussions,” Eric Holoman, president of Los Angeles-based Magic Johnson Enterprises, said in an interview. “There’s no definitive agreement.” He declined to comment

Breaking New Ground With Google
February 1, 2009

In December 2008, Google announced that it had launched an initiative to add online magazine archives to its already established digital book archive database, Google Book Search ( One of the first publishers to offer content to the new initiative was Chicago-based Johnson Publishing, the world’s largest African-American-owned and -operated publishing company, which produces Ebony and Jet magazines.