Fellow designer Diane von Furstenberg, president of the fashion industry trade association, and Nadja Swarovski of the Swarovksi Group announced the selection Monday night, along with other nominees and honorees for the 2015 CFDA awards, to be presented June 1 at Lincoln Center.
Tom Ford was last year's recipient of the CFDA's Geoffrey Beene Lifetime Achievement Award.
Johnson is being honoured during her 50th year in fashion. She started her whimsical label in 1978, expanding in 2004 as a lifestyle brand encompassing handbags, leather goods, footwear, eyewear, luggage, fragrances and jewelry.
Johnson is known for an eternally youthful vibe, including poofy prom dresses, a vintage vibe and bright colour.