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Get to Know: Lynn Johnson

Lynn Johnson is a JAI founder. She serves as CFO and is a partner in the firm.

 

Lynn Johnson
Johnson Architecture

What is your role at JAI?

Over the years I have worn many hats from maintenance supervisor, HR and travel advisor, among others. Consistently over the past 25 years, I have always worn the financial/HR hat. I have strived to provide JAI with ample financial information, advice to steer the company in a positive direction and keep the playing field at work fair and consistent.

 

What three words best describe you?

I just completed a personal awareness assessment and being a numbers person, I was a little out of the norm. As the results revealed the three top words were: Activator, Arranger and Positivity.

 

What is your favorite aspect of being on the JAI team?

I feel we are really more of a FAMILY. There are times when we are close and other times that we can argue like sibling or parents. But at the end of the day, we know that we truly care about each other and the family, JAI, as a whole.

 

What three words best describe the culture at JAI?

Energetic, creative and dynamic. We like everyone to be themselves in hopes it brings another dimension to the (drafting or holiday party) table.

 

What has been your proudest moment to date working at JAI?

The completion of Knoxville Catholic High School. It is dear to my heart because I got to personally experience some of the work that Father Chris Michelson and the KCHS committee put into the development, and there was also an emotional connection. All of my children have attended KCHS and, in addition, there is a science room that was dedicated in my father’s name.

 

How has working at JAI enhanced your professional development?

Because JAI started as a two-person firm in the basement of our home, I got to experience a startup company. This allowed me to have some influence in the direction of JAI, develop my talent and potential with numbers, build human capital (25 employees) and, hopefully, contribute to the realization of the dreams and aspirations of JAI.

 

What or who is your go-to source for work inspiration?

Honestly, Daryl is my go-to source for work inspiration. He has an incredible understanding of what the client is inspiring to create and does it with grace and integrity. He takes their words and visions and makes them a reality. In the early days of JAI, he would often ask for opinions on how a window looked or which rendering was the favorite. Those were also the days when he would kidnap the kids into the car to go look at projects underway. These kidnappings are now called “job site visits,” and the staff is baited with lunch or a happy hour afterwards!

 

If you could switch places for a day with any JAI team member, which one would you choose? Why?

I would like to be Daryl and have that creative ability for just one day. There is a reason I work with numbers. I can only draw stick figures and tents.

 

Before joining JAI, what was the most unusual/enjoyable/challenging job you held? What made it so?

The most enjoyable job I have had was chair umpiring University of Tennessee tennis matches. I was amazed by the talent these young adults possess while maintaining full-time academic schedules. I had done this for approximately six years and was able to see these student-athletes start as freshmen and see most of them finish their last season as seniors at UT.

 

What do you look most forward to at the end of a workday?

I look forward to a walk outside with my dogs and friends or a friendly game or two of tennis.  A glass of wine and a good book are not too bad, either.

 

If you were stranded alone on an island, what three material possessions would you hope to have with you?

A hammock that could double as a fishing net.

A spear/machete/knife – nothing too flashy but can help with the brush, fishing and eating.

A solar powered cell/satellite phone to order anything else I may need from Amazon that can soon be delivered by drone or sea turtle.

 

What is your secret talent?

Unfortunately, I have none at this point in my life that are secret. I do love to bake and cook. I enjoy giving to others, and there is some stress relief in the process of making a meal or cake.

 

What is your favorite place in the world?

If you asked me this a while ago, no doubt, hands down it would be Grace Bay, Turks and Caicos Islands, under the water scuba diving, kissing the fish. But honestly, my favorite place to be in the whole world is anywhere I can be with my family collectively or one-on-one!

 

What are you currently watching or reading?

I’m reading Daniel Silva’s “House of Spies” and watching “You” on Netflix.

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