Family Matters

In 1855, William Laird joined forces with his cousins James and Matthew Norton as partners in a frontier lumber operation. A family company was born. Now seven generations and over 400 members later, the Laird Norton family continues to promote intellectual growth, responsible investing and business experience in order to ensure excellence for generations to come.

Chairman of the Board – Debbie Brown

Debbie Brown
Debbie Brown, a family member, joined the Laird Norton Company Board in June 2011 and was named Chairman in June 2012. She previously served as an LNC director from 1996 to 2007. During this time she was a member of the Investment and Nominating Committees and chaired the Compensation Committee. Debbie founded and later sold Pacific Learning Gardens to Bright Horizons Family Solutions, Inc., where she is currently employed as Vice President of Regional Development, Bright Horizons is the premier provider of employer-sponsored child care, early education, and work/life solutions.

Family President – Allison Parks

Allison Parks

A fifth-generation family member, Allison Parks began serving as LNC’s Family President in August, 2014 after a previous career in teaching and school administration. She has held a variety of positions within the Laird Norton Family Foundation: Director, Secretary, and most recently, as a member of a Fund Advisory Committee.

Allison is a director on the board of Laird Norton Company and Chairman of the Family Council Committee. She is responsible for overseeing the annual Family Summit and facilitating communication among over 400 Laird Norton family members. Allison also focuses on developing family programs with an emphasis on education and responsible company stewardship.


The Laird Norton family and business partnership has been successful for seven generations, inspiring other family-owned enterprises in the areas of governance, business stewardship, and family dynamics.