‘He was larger than life’: Des Moines philanthropist and businessman Barry Griswell dies
June 18, 2020 by Andrea May Sahouri
Prominent Des Moines philanthropist and businessman Barry Griswell died Friday morning, his family announced. He was 71.
Griswell was the chairman and CEO of Principal Financial Group from 2000 to 2008, then led the Community Foundation of Greater Des Moines in 2008 until he retired in 2013. While president of the Community Foundation, Griswell focused on improving the city’s neighborhoods most affected by poverty and lack of housing and education.
“He was a very tall man,” Barry Griswell’s son, John Griswell, said with a chuckle. “He was 6-foot-10. He was larger than life, figuratively and literally.”