Alberta B. Johnston joined the Oregon Extension Service as a Home Management Specialist in 1963. Johnston’s primary focus was Home Economics and she became involved in different areas of the home, including consumption and finances. She was also involved with the Mini College program for home makers. Johnston later served as the Extension Area Supervisor for Northwestern Oregon (1975), Assistant Director for County Programs (1979), Associate Director (1982), and Deputy Director of the Extension Service (1987). She retired in 1990 with an Emeritus appointment. Johnston was affiliated with several professional associations, such as the Oregon Home Economics Association, Personal Finance Advisory Committee, Northwest Adult Education Association and the United States Adult Association.
After her retirement, Johnston became deeply involved with the Oregon 4-H Foundation. She serves as a trustee and has overseen the public funding of the organization. For her efforts with 4-H, she was inducted into the National 4-H Hall of Fame and has been honored by Epsilon Sigma Phi, the national organization for extension professionals.
During her career with the Oregon Extension Service, Johnston authored and coauthored many extension publications, along with her involvement in the Journal of Extension. Her publications include Credit Cards: 30 Days to Reality (1968) and The Truth-in-Lending Law and your Credit (1970). Her coauthored publications include Planning for Retirement (1964), Teaching Money Skills to Preschool Children (1969), and Choosing a Mobile Home (1970).
Alberta Johnston was born in 1920 in Hickman, Nebraska. She earned a B.S. in Vocational Home Economics from the University of Nebraska (1943), an M.S. in Economics and Home Economics from Kansas State University (1957), and a Ph.D. in Adult Education from the University of British Columbia (1973).
Prior to working for the Oregon Extension service, Johnston was a home economics and science teacher in Nebraska (1943-1947). Johnston worked for the Wyoming Extension Service starting in 1949 as a Home Demonstration Agent, and also co-led as a 4-H agent (1949-55). After obtaining her master’s degree, Johnston returned to Wyoming and served as a Family Economist Specialist from 1957 to 1960. In 1960, she transferred to the Montana Extension program where most of her efforts were focused on home management and family counseling.