Lawn Griffiths – yes ‘Lawn’ as in grass – has been writing for publication since 1963. Son of a strongly opinionated Iowa farmer, he learned early that ideas rock the world, and he hasn’t been timid about sharing his beliefs and disbeliefs. His second editorial when he was high school newspaper editor, lambasting the school board, got both the school superintendent and the high school principal sitting him down and “setting him straight.” It just made him write better and watch his back.
Lawn, who holds a bachelor degree in journalism from Iowa State University and master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University, has balanced 39 years of daily newspapering with decades of serving on community boards and endless voluntarism. He spent almost 25 years as a reporter, editor, columnist and blogger with the East Valley Tribune through all its manifestations and names. Today he freelances for the Arizona Republic and other publications. He is 1995 recipent of the city of Tempe’s “Don Carlos Humanitarian Award”; Tempe Leadership’s 1992 “Outstanding Citizen Leadership Award”; Arizona Interfaith Movement’s “Golden Rule Award”; Arizona Ecumenical Council’s “Gold Cross Award”; Tempe Historical Society’s “Living Legends Hall of Fame”; Kiwanis’ George F. Hixson Fellow Award’ and, in 2011, elected to the Arizona Veterans Hall of Fame. He has been Kiwanis of the Year four times in his Kiwanis Club where he has been a member for 26 years.
He embraces progressive causes and advocates for many who have no voice. His mantra is Horace Mann’s cry, “Be ashamed to die until you have won some victory for humanity.”