|Tommy Johnson was clearly warned about demonizing a crime victim. He ignored the warnings.|
A man of many trades and second chances, Tommy Johnson wants the citizens of Austin County to know he is the man who will work tenaciously to do what the people think is right. “I’m the underdog, but I’m a bulldog,” he said. Johnson has been a broadcaster, medic, engineer, IT worker, network administrator, DJ and classic rock band member and more, and now he wants to be county judge.
“Because of my life experiences ... I feel like I’m capable of accomplishing anything,” he said.
Johnson was born and raised in Bellville and started off rough dealing with Austin County authorities. After getting upset over his first marriage, he ended the night stealing a case of hamburger patties from Dairy Queen.
The next day he turned himself in, and went into Alcoholics Anonymous.
In a second incident, while working at a gas station, he was charged with stealing something off somebody’s car. He hired a fingerprint expert and all charges were eventually dropped. But that's all in his past and Johnson is looking to the future.
With some local support, he became an EMT and worked with Cypress Creek EMS, Harris County Emergency Corps. and Northwest Rural Ems, among others.
He worked as a broadcaster at several radio stations and appeared on local television and CNN during a plant explosion in Belvue in 1998.
He and his second wife, April, moved to Dallas that year for a job at a large Christian radio station.
When April was 27 she was diagnosed with cancer.
With their three children, they moved back to Bellville in 2001 and Johnson stayed with her until she passed in 2005.
Once the family was back in Austin County, Johnson had to adjust back to rural life – or help it adjust to newer technologies.
“We found out there was no high speed Internet. It’s 2001 and there’s nothing but dial-up, and I’m not going back to dial up," he said.
Johnson invested in several towers in the area, and lit up Austin County’s first high-speed Internet.
He currently does IT work in the north side of the county, and is the network administrator for Pecan Services in Brookshire.
If you haven’t heard him DJ, you might catch his band Alloy Dragon playing classic 70s and 80s rock.
“I’ve had a lot of hurdles placed in front of me, some of them hurdles I’ve placed in front of me at the age of 18, beyond that everything that could possibly happen, did,” he said. “All I can say is it made me a better man.”
Johnson and his newlywed wife Kim have one daughter still at home, a senior at Bellville High School.
As a county judge, he promises to not play favorites for any reason.
He wants to focus on radio communications, improving roads, supporting new businesses and water issues.
He wants to be a man for the people. In fact, he was the only candidate to go out and get 229 signatures to petition his name on the ballot rather than pay the filing fee.
“A man who will get out there and work for it instead of paying money is a man I want in office,” he said.