Johnson University is pleased to announce that Sevier County businessman and founder of the Great Smokies Flea Market, Charles Atchley Sr., and his wife Linda have made a generous contribution to the University’s student café. The café, now named the Charles E. Atchley & Family Café, is a popular spot on Johnson’s campus and is part of the Graham Center, an 86,000-square-foot facility that includes competition gyms, fitness rooms, a 10-lane pool, game rooms, and classroom space dedicated to supporting the physical, intellectual, and social growth of Johnson’s students.
“We are especially pleased to make this contribution because Johnson’s mission of educating students to impact the world for Christ aligns with our personal Christian values,” said Mr. Atchley.
Atchley family connections with Johnson span three generations. Charles’ father Dallas Newell Atchley Jr., a native of Jefferson County, wanted to attend Johnson as a young man but was unable to because of financial constraints. Charles and Linda were therefore especially pleased when their daughter Krista graduated from Johnson in 2012. As a student, Krista became friends with first lady Margaret Eubanks and President David Eubanks, which led to a special friendship with the entire family, including the Atchleys’ son, Charles Jr., who is a U.S. District Judge.
“This generous gift from the Atchley family is the result of many years of friendship,” said Dr. Tommy Smith, president of Johnson University. “It is the fruit of their heart for the mission of Johnson and especially for our students.”