Diane J. Johnson Scholarship
Diane Johnson was born in California, her parents Norm and Charlotte Borgen, moved their family to Lanesboro before her second birthday, “in the war years.”
Always youthful – and if one had not known she started teaching in 1966 – you’d have had a hard time guessing her age. She loved to dance and could often have been found on the dance floors in the area.
A high school cheerleader – and a member of the dance and drill team during her college years at Winona State University – Johnson said her interest in dancing started back in grade school. She laughed, recalling a Girl Scout leader telling another Scout, “Dance like Diane. She has rhythm.”
When asked how or why she chose teaching young children as her career, Johnson said she always loved her first grade teacher, Winnie Butler Johnson.
During her 38 year career as a kindergarten teacher in Lanesboro, Johnson taught both parents and their children, whom she would sometimes mistakenly call by their mothers’ and fathers’ names. She also taught her grandchildren, open-enrolled at Lanesboro.
Diane and Dave Johnson were both graduates of Winona State University. Dave died in 2004. They were married at Bethlehem Lutheran Church in 1965. They were married nearly 40 years when he died.
The couple had daughters Jill and Jane. Jill and Mike Johnson of Harmony have children Tyler, Kallie and Kendal. Jane and Jim Holien have lived for six years in Hydaburg, Alaska, with daughters Kenai and McKinley.
Diane died in 2007, her special dance partner and friend Wayne Peterson is devoted to the memory of Diane and has established this scholarship in her honor.
Scholarship contacts are Wayne Peterson and Julia Borgen.