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Business College Honors Principal CEO Griswell with Leadership Award

The University of Iowa Henry B. Tippie College of Business will honor J. Barry Griswell, chairman, president, and chief executive officer of the Principal Financial Group, as the recipient of the 2003 Oscar C. Schmidt Iowa Business Leadership Award.

Griswell will be honored at a dinner starting at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, March 25, in the Main Lounge of the Iowa Memorial Union.

"We are proud to honor Griswell and recognize his leadership at Principal. He has helped build this company into one of the most prominent financial institutions in Iowa and the world," said Gary Fethke, dean of the Tippie College of Business. He added that many University of Iowa business graduates are employed at Principal, and the company has a history of supporting education at the UI.

Griswell is responsible for overall management of the Principal Financial Group, including capital markets activities, U.S. asset management and accumulation, international asset management and accumulation, life and health, mortgage banking, government relations and industry relations, the company's growing merger and acquisition activities and corporate support functions.

The Principal Financial Group is a leader in offering businesses, individuals and institutional clients a wide range of financial products and services, including retirement and investment services, life and health insurance and mortgage banking through its diverse family of financial services companies.

According to CFO Magazine, more employers choose the Principal Financial Group for their 401(k) plans than any other bank, mutual fund, or insurance company in the United States. A member of the Fortune 500, the Principal Financial Group has $134.8 billion in assets under management and serves some 14.8 million customers worldwide from offices in Asia, Australia, Europe, Latin America and the United States.

Griswell joined the company in 1988 as an officer and agency vice president. He became senior vice president in 1991 and executive vice president in 1996. He was named president in 1998, became CEO in 2000 and chairman of the board in 2002. Prior to his association with the Principal Financial Group, he served as president and CEO of MetLife Marketing Corporation, a brokerage and supplementary distribution marketing subsidiary of Metropolitan Life Insurance Company.

A native of Georgia, Griswell received his bachelor's degree from Berry College in Rome, Georgia, and his master's degree from Stetson University in Deland, Florida.

Griswell is active in various industry and community organizations including serving as chair of the Greater Des Moines Partnership. He is a 2003 Horatio Alger Association Distinguished American Award winner and has been inducted into the Iowa Business Hall of Fame.

The Iowa Business Leadership Award was established by the late C. Oscar Schmidt, president of the Cincinnati Butchers' Supply Company, who wanted to honor his father by recognizing an outstanding Iowa business executive. His intention was both to honor an outstanding business leader and to provide a vehicle by which the students and faculty of the Tippie College could interact with successful business professionals. The award recognizes outstanding performance in the world of commerce in the belief that business leadership is essential to the economic progress of Iowa and the nation.

Past recipients of the Oscar C. Schmidt Iowa Business Leadership Award, first given in 1980, include: Marjorie M. Scardino, chief executive of Pearson plc; William T. Kerr, chairman and chief executive officer of Meredith Corporation; John Pappajohn, president of Equity Dynamics, Inc.; and Donald R. Keough, former president of The Coca-Cola Company and chairman of the board of Allen and Company.


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