WHO WE ARE
The Winona Foundation is a non-profit 501c3 organization funded and administered by the family and heirs of the Laird Norton Co. which began operations in Winona, MN. in 1855. Though its center of operations long ago moved to Seattle, WA., the family created the Winona Foundation in 1982. The purpose being keeping the family history alive in the minds of new generations and as a way of giving back to the community where we can all trace our ancestors and the roots of the Laird Norton Co.
FAMILY HISTORY & INVOLVEMENT IN WINONA
In 1854, William H. Laird and cousins Matthew and James Norton followed earlier family members who had previously moved to Winona, MN. There they established a business together, the Laird Norton Co., that would eventually include lumber milling, manufacture and retail. The business was successful and the Lairds and Nortons eventually became important Winona citizens who were instrumental in the early development of the town.
Though completely out of the lumber business now, the Laird Norton Co. is still operating as a family business seven generations later. The philanthropic underpinnings that the founders established are still very much alive in the current generations.