Cris Johnston attended Wabash College and Butler University, where he received a bachelor’s degree in economics and a master’s degree in business administration, respectively. Upon graduating, he served as chief deputy for the Indiana Treasurer. For 13 years, Johnston worked as a partner at Crowe Chizek and Company LLC. While there, he advised local and state governments in Indiana and Illinois. In 2005, Governor Mitch Daniels of Indiana appointed Johnston to the position of Executive Director of Government Efficiency and Financial Planning within the Office of Management and Budget.