A Long Beach, Calif., native, Chuck grew up with agriculture in his blood. Before the area became a sprawling city it was dotted with miles and miles of strawberry, orange and lemon fields. His father was an independent grocer and grew peach and stone fruit trees as a hobby. This led Chuck to California Polytechnic State University, where he graduated in 1975 with a degree in agricultural business and marketing. His first job was one he loved, producing sorting equipment for machines that handled stone fruits and apples. Unfortunately, this position provided little financial security. So in 1983 he made a career transition to Lockheed Martin which eventually took Chuck and the family to Denver, where he worked the next 25 years. Retirement upon him, Chuck decided to return him to the roots of agriculture, helping start the new family business Mesa Park Vineyards as its winemaker.
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