Nursery founder earns Farm Bureau Distinguished Service Award
December 4, 2012
Contra Costa County nursery founder Mike Vukelich, center, receives the Distinguished Service Award from CFBF President Paul Wenger and First Vice President Kenny Watkins.
In recognition of his more than 60 years of service to the farming and ranching community, Contra Costa County nurseryman Mike Vukelich received the California Farm Bureau Federation Distinguished Service Award during the CFBF Annual Meeting last night in Pasadena.
Vukelich has served on the board of directors of the Contra Costa County Farm Bureau since 1958 and has held numerous additional leadership roles. He served as president of the county Farm Bureau in the 1970s and again in 1997-99. He represented Alameda, Contra Costa and Solano counties on the CFBF Board of Directors from 2000-06 and again in 2008-09. From 1964-66, he served as president of the California Nursery Association.
Vukelich founded Color Spot Nurseries, which has grown into one of the nation's leading wholesale nurseries, supplying home improvement and garden centers throughout the nation. In a quest to learn what types of plants and nurseries thrive across the country, he has traveled to all 50 states and every major city.
"Mike Vukelich had a vision for what the nursery business should be, and went out to make it happen," California Farm Bureau Federation President Paul Wenger said. "His family has forever changed the nursery business for the better. At the same time, he has been a devoted volunteer for Farm Bureau and an active, engaged participant in Farm Bureau activities and policies."
Vukelich donates thousands of flowers each year to county and state Farm Bureau events, and is always quick to volunteer for programs benefiting California agriculture. Contra Costa County Farm Bureau leaders described Vukelich as one of the most active volunteers in the county Agriculture in the Classroom program, helping children learn how to care for plants and encouraging each child to take home a plant of his or her own.
"The Distinguished Service Award recognizes those who demonstrate outstanding leadership and excellence and Mike definitely embodies those qualities," Contra Costa County Farm Bureau President Wayne Reeves said. "His unwavering commitment to the agricultural community by getting the job done right has set the example for other members and farmers."
A lifelong resident of Contra Costa County, Vukelich lives in El Sobrante. He is also a dedicated San Francisco 49ers fan, holding season tickets since 1956 and attending more than 595 consecutive home games.
The California Farm Bureau Federation works to protect family farms and ranches on behalf of more than 74,000 members statewide and as part of a nationwide network of more than 6.2 million Farm Bureau members.
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