Charlie Kieffer, a Friends’ board member who serves our organization in many, many ways, was named a Community Hero by the United Way of Santa Cruz County this month.
We’re very proud of Charlie and grateful for all he does for our local parks, especially here at the Castro Adobe, where he can often be spotted giving a tour. Charlie became a docent at Wilder Ranch State Park in 1989 and fell in love with state parks.
Charlie is the Chair of Friends’ Castro Adobe committee and serves on our Mission Adobe committee – perfect fits since he is a direct descendant of the Castro family that came to California 1775 with the Anza Expedition out of Mexico, and whose family was also one of the 15 founding families of San Jose in 1777.
Charlie has been an active volunteer in Santa Cruz County for many years. The long list of organizations that have benefitted from Charlie’s participation include the Museum of Art and History, Friends of Longs Marine Lab, the Optimist Club, SCOPE, and the Boy Scouts of America. Charlie is a proud member of “Los Californianos”, an organization whose members must be of Hispanic heritage and whose family must have arrived in “Alta California” prior to 1848.
Charlie is a retired businessman and former owner of Santa Cruz Mattress and Upholstery Co., and served three years in the Army as a member of the 101st Airborne Paratroopers Division.