Lonnie Laffen

Mayor Brandon Bochenski’s announcement:

The Alexander Griggs Award recognizes exceptional personal efforts to preserve Grand Forks’ built and cultural history. It is named for Captain Alexander Griggs, our city’s founding father. Honorees are selected by the Grand Forks Historic Preservation Commission and recipients’ names are added to the permanent plaque that hangs in Council Chambers.  In past years, the award has been given to historians, librarians, teachers, and public servants among others.

It is my privilege to announce that Lonnie Laffen is posthumously awarded this year’s Griggs Award to honor his passion and efforts to maintain the historic character of our city. As an architect, Lonnie Laffen recognized the value of old buildings. He knew that they brought a character to the city that is impossible to replicate, they told a story of the city’s residents and its history, and he recognized that they have a unique ability to bring people together. 

His work in historic preservation included service on the Grand Forks Historic Preservation Commission, the National Trust Historic Preservation, and the North Dakota Historic Preservation Review Board for which he served as chair.

It is my pleasure to present this certificate of recognition to Lonnie’s wife, Pam Laffen.

Mayor Bochenski present the Griggs Award to Pam Laffen at the meeting of City Council on July 19, 2021