Dennis Johnson

Biographical information

RolesCompeted in Olympic Games
Full nameDennis Osric•Johnson
Used nameDennis•Johnson
Born6 May 1939 in Kingston, Kingston (JAM)
Died22 April 2021
Measurements180 cm / 73 kg
AffiliationsSan Jose State University (USA)
NOC Jamaica West Indies Federation


A Jamaican sprinter, Dennis Johnson ran at the 1960 and 1964 Olympic Games, although representing the West Indies Federation in 1960. Johnson won a bronze medal at the 1959 Pan American Games in the 4x100, also winning bronze in that event at the 1962 Central American and Caribbean Games. Johnson competed at the 1962 British Empire and Commonwealth Games, placing fifth in the 100 yards. Johnson ran in college for San Jose State University in the United States. In a stretch from March to May 1961, he equalled the world record of 9.3 for 100 yards four times, of which three were ratified.

Johnson became much better known as a coach and trainer and was largely responsible for the success Jamaican sprinters had on the world stage. In 1971 he started a sports program at the College of Arts, Science and Technology (CAST), now the University of Technology, and eventually became the sports director at UTech.

Johnson was inducted into the San Jose State Spartans Hall of Fame in 2001, and that year he was awarded the Order of Distinction (OD) by the Jamaican government. He was awarded the UTech Chancellor’s medal in 2009 and in 2012, UTech renamed its athletes’ residence, previously known as the Track House, in Johnson’s honour. Sadly, he died in 2021 of complications related to COVID-19.

Personal Bests: 100 – 10.2 (1964); 200 – 20.8y (1961).


Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1960 Summer Olympics Athletics WIF Dennis Johnson
100 metres, Men (Olympic) 4 h2 r2/4
200 metres, Men (Olympic) 5 h2 r3/4
1964 Summer Olympics Athletics JAM Dennis Johnson
100 metres, Men (Olympic) 5 h1 r2/4
4 × 100 metres Relay, Men (Olympic) Jamaica 4

Special Notes