COLUMBIA — Dave Griggs, chairman of Regional Economic Development Inc., was presented the Howard B. Lang Jr. Award for Outstanding Volunteer Service to the City of Columbia on Thursday.
The award is given each year to a Columbia resident based on initiative, the impact of the person's work and his or her length of service.
"I am extremely flattered and honored," Griggs said after receiving the award. "Columbia has been amazingly good to me and my family. I'm just a Boone County farm boy. My parents instilled it in me: 'You have to give to receive.'"
Mayor Bob McDavid stood next to Griggs in Stoney Creek Inn as he received a plaque to a room full of applause.
"He is an example of the spirit of volunteerism, something that is part of Columbia's soul," McDavid said after the ceremony.
Griggs was nominated for the award by REDI's staff and board of directors for his work in helping attract IBM to bring a new service delivery center to Columbia, according to a city news release.
The service center is expected to create 800 new jobs by 2012, according to a previous Missourian article. Griggs spent more than 100 hours on the IBM project, organizing site visits and media contact, according to the release.
Griggs served on REDI's board in 1989 and again in 1997 until the present, according to the release.
REDI President Mike Brooks praised Griggs' dedication to volunteerism and his readiness to help at a moment's notice.
"It's a great recognition of someone who has donated ungodly numbers of hours," Brooks said. "I have never had a volunteer give as much as Dave."
In addition to his work on the IBM project, Griggs helped create the original Boone County Chapter 100 Revenue Bond Policy and is involved with the Columbia Area Jobs Foundation, according to the release. He also served on the Boone County Commission, as chair of the Columbia Chamber of Commerce and as a board member of the Boone County Fire Protection District.
In 2005, Griggs was named Outstanding Citizen of the Year by the Columbia Chamber of Commerce.
Past recipients of the Lang Award are former city councilman Ed Kaiser and former mayor Darwin Hindman. The winner is presented with a plaque and $1,000.