Tom Johnston, 1881-1965
Tom Johnston in 1943
Tom Johnston was born in Kirkintilloch and was educated at Lenzie Academy and the University of Glasgow, where he studied History and Economics. He was Secretary of State for Scotland during the Second World War in Churchill's cabinet. He set up the North of Scotland Hydro Electric Board in 1943. Johnston was also Chairperson of the Forestry Commission and the Scottish Tourist Board. He was Chancellor of the University of Aberdeen from 1951 until his death.
On a more local level, in 1913 he was elected to Kirkintilloch Town Council and made an immediate impact. He set himself up as the champion of municipal housing and became involved in the introduction and development of many other council services. He was also a member of the County Council of Dunbarton Education Committee. He left the Council in 1922 to concentrate on national politics, but retained many links with Kirkintilloch. In 1931 he became the first Freeman of the Burgh of Kirkintilloch.
The civic chambers of Strathkelvin District Council, was built in the early 1980's and named Tom Johnston House.