Weather Forecast


Larson to receive Greater North Dakotan Award

Starion Financial founder and chairman Frank Larson will receive the Greater North Dakotan Award during a presentation at the Governor’s Business Forum on April 15 at the Alerus Center in Grand Forks.

The award is the Greater North Dakota Chamber’s highest honor and is being presented to Larson in acknowledgment of the business and philanthropic impact he has had on the state of North Dakota.

A lifelong resident of Valley City, Larson and his wife, JoAndrea, purchased First National Bank of Oakes in 1969 and a year later purchased First National Bank and Trust Company in Ellendale. In 1989, the business expanded to Mandan, and four years later to Bismarck. In 1995, the banks were merged into First Southwest Bank and additional branches were added in the Bismarck-Mandan community. In 2003, the business’ name was changed to Starion Financial and in 2006, the bank expanded to Madison, Wis. In 2008, Starion Financial began serving the Fargo-Moorhead and West Fargo communities and in 2011, Starion Financial purchased banks in Bottineau, N.D., Dunseith, N.D., and Rolla, N.D.

Larson has served as chairman of the Starion Financial Board of Directors since 1989 and also serves as CEO of the Starion Bancorporation Board of Directors. He is also on the board of directors for the Theodore Roosevelt Medora Foundation and the Bank of North Dakota. Larson has received an honorary degree in philanthropy from the University of Mary and has also received the North Dakota Chamber’s Community Leadership Award in the city of Oakes. In 2011, the Larson family was honored with the Bismarck-Mandan Family Business of the Year Award from the Prairie Family Business Association.

The Larsons have been major benefactors over the past several decades to projects ranging from hospitals and libraries to higher education buildings. They have also established community foundations in Oakes, Ellendale, Bismarck and Mandan to help support community advancement projects.

“Throughout his life and career, Frank has served as a strong example of dedication to the betterment of North Dakota and its business community,” said Andy Peterson, president and CEO of the Greater North Dakota Chamber. “He has truly made, and continues to make, a powerful impact on our communities, businesses and state.”

The Greater North Dakota Chamber is a business association that advocates for nearly 1,100 North Dakota businesses of all sizes and industries.