Porter Johnson completed his master's and doctoral degrees in high energy physics at Princeton in 1967. Following postdoctoral work at Case Western Reserve University, he took a faculty position at the Illinois Institute of of Technology in 1969, where he is currently Professor in the Department of Mathematics and Science Education.
Among his educational initiatives, Porter co-directed of the SMILE [Science and Mathematics Initiative for Learning Enhancement] program at the Illinois Institute of Technology from 1993 - 2006. This program encourages teachers to bring interactive experiences into the classroom to enhance student understanding and appreciation of mathematics and science.
Porter has an avid interest in baseball, and has lectured frequently on the physics of baseball to students, teachers, and the general public.