Randy is recognized internationally as an artist and is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Bush Foundation Artist Fellowship, two Visual Artist Fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, and a Distinguished Teaching Award in American Arts from the James Renwick Society of the Smithsonian. He received his MFA from Southern Illinois University and a BFA in Studio Arts from the University of Minnesota where he studied with Warren MacKenzie. He also studied in Japan at the pottery of Shimaoka Tatsuzo, who was a student of Shoji Hamada. Johnston has presented hundreds of lectures and guest artist presentations worldwide and is a member of the International Academy of Ceramics. He has work in numerous international museums and private collections including the Boston Museum fine Arts, Victoria and Albert, Minneapolis Institute Arts and the Renwick/Smithsonian.