Thunderbird Headquarters was officially founded by Don and Sandy Johnson in 1979, but the dream had started many years before. Don had grown up working in his father's new car dealership in Southern California where he first drove a 1955 Thunderbird and vowed to himself that someday he would own one of these sports cars. In 1962 Don traveled to Northern California to attend St. Mary's College. It was during this time Don bought his first Thunderbird, a white 1957, and then met and married his wife Sandy.
After graduation Don worked as a representative for an oil company but later bought and operated a service station with a garage and tow trucks. Don and Sandy then joined the Classic Thunderbird Club International in 1969 and later the Bay Area Thunderbird Owner's Club and the Santa Clara Valley Thunderbird Club which they still belong to today. In 1975 Don started restoring his white 1957 Thunderbird which received "Best of Show" honors at the 1976 National Convention in San Jose, CA. In 1977 Don restored a bronze dual carburetor 1957 Thunderbird which received "Best of Class" honors at the 1978 National Convention held in Dallas, TX.
Shortly after that Don sold his station, garage and tow trucks to do what he liked to do best - be involved with Thunderbirds. The rest is history.
From the meager beginning of employing one part time worker Thunderbird Headquarters has grown to become the world's leader in 1955-66 Thunderbird parts, upholstery and accessories.
Thunderbird Headquarters now employs 23 people at its two facilities in Concord, CA. Thunderbird Headquarters manufactures over 1000 parts including a full line of upholstery items such as seat covers, door panels, carpets, trunk mat kits, emblems and hard parts. In addition TBHQ maintains an inventory of over 20,000 different new and used items for immediate shipping to its customers world wide. Thunderbird Headquarters strives to produce and offer its customers high quality parts at competitive prices with a friendly and helpful staff.
TBHQ is also a parts licensee with Ford Motor Company. TBHQ has over 170 reproduction items approved and licensed by Ford Motor Company.
Don is still active on a daily basis, inspecting shipments of reproduction items, developing and testing new items and of course solving the daily problems that seem to "pop up". Sandy is also active every day compiling the sales reports and paying all the bills.