D. Wayne Johnson is the corporate historian and senior consultant for the Medallic Art Company and was director of research with Medallic Art Company from January 1966 until December 1976. In that position he conducted sales research for the great outpouring of medals issued for the 1976 American Bicentennial. He created an archive and cataloged all the firm’s previous medallic issues back to 1906. He also edited The Art Medallist, a company newsletter for collectors and the public. He served as assistant to the president at the time, William T. Louth, for whom he wrote speeches, particularly for the numismatic field.
Dick Johnson, who writes under the name D. Wayne Johnson, is a life-long numismatist. A coin collector since February 1939, he was the founding editor of Coin World in 1960, now in its 50th year. Following his employment with Medallic Art, he formed an art medal dealership in 1977 with medal enthusiast Chris Jensen, and the pair conducted 27 auction sales under the banner of Johnson & Jensen.
Mr. Johnson also holds the position as curator of numismatic art at the Belskie Museum of Closter, New Jersey, to which he was appointed in 2005. This museum is named after Abram Belskie, a sculptor of medallic art and a series of medical medals, all of which Johnson has cataloged.
In November 2008, Mr. Johnson joined with Mark Schlepphorst to form Signature Art Medals to market high quality medallic art. The firm’s first production was a Lincoln/Brenner plaquette honoring the bicentennial of Abraham Lincoln’s birth and the centennial of the Lincoln cent. It was struck by Medallic Art Company.
Mr. Johnson is the author of over 200 articles and more than 800 brief items in The E-Sylum, a newsletter in the numismatic field. His more serious work at present is a directory of American coin and medal artists, now numbering more than 3,150 such artists, and an encyclopedia of coin and medal technology with 1,842 major entries.
In serving as corporate historian for Medallic Art Company, one of Johnson’s early priorities in his new position will be to write a history of the company and a catalog of all the firm’s previous medallic issues. Among his most recent work is “Objects of Desire” on medallic objects. It was published in The Numismatist, September 2007.