Augsburg News

News Archives - 2007

Augsburg remembers Abner B. Batalden

Jan. 26, 2007

Abner Bataldan

Abner B. Batalden, 98, who established the annual Batalden Seminar in Applied Ethics at Augsburg College, with his wife Martha, and family Paul and LaVonne Batalden and Stephen and Sandra Batalden, passed away Jan. 18 in Hanover, N.H. 

The Batalden Seminar in Applied Ethics, which was established in 1981, brings national and international authorities in the field of ethics to Augsburg to discuss questions of applied ethics within spiritual and practical dimensions.

Abner Batalden graduated from Augsburg College in 1935. During his college years he worked his way around the world and taught English for a year in the Philippines before returning to Augsburg to direct an employment service for needy students during the depression.

Batalden worked for the Lutheran Church as manager of the Messenger, and director of alumni relations for Augsburg. From 1963-1976, he served as representative of Lutheran World Relief working in partnership with local agencies and other non-profit organizations to advance community and economic development on South Korea, South Vietnam, India and Bangladesh.

Returning to Minnesota, he was employed by Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service in resettling Indochinese refugees. His later work at Augsburg College included fundraising for a handicap-accessible campus and for the Scandinavian Center.

Batalden lived most of his life in Minnesota and was a life-long member of Trinity Lutheran Church. His last years were spent in New Hampshire. He is preceded in death by his wife Martha Bjornstad, his partner for more than 62 years. He is survived by two sons, Paul and LaVonne of Lebanon, N.H. and Stephen and Sandra of Tempe, Ariz., two granddaughters, two grandsons and their families.

A memorial service will be held at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in Hanover, Feb. 17. Memorials may be sent to The Batalden Applied Ethics Fund, Augsburg College, or the Lutheran World Relief.

Star Tribune: Abner Batalden aided people in several nations