Morro Bay’s citizen of the year is a Canadian native who thought volunteering was one of the best ways to integrate into the community when he moved to town in 1995.
Ken Vesterfelt received the Morro Bay Chamber of Commerce award at Friday’s installation dinner.
He recalls his most memorable moment in Morro Bay as “reading the Declaration of Independence at the city’s July 4 celebration in 2000,” the same year he became a U.S. citizen, according to the chamber.
Vesterfelt, 68, a real estate agent at Bayshore Realty, has volunteered with a number of community organizations and events over the years.
“Ken is willing to help at any event at the drop of the hat,” said Jennifer Redman, the chamber’s president. “He is a role model for us all.”
Vesterfelt is a member of the Morro Bay Police Volunteers and is a Sheriff’s Auxiliary volunteer. He fundraises for the Morro Bay fire and police departments.
“He’s outstanding,” Morro Bay police Chief Amy Christie said. “He’s an ambassador. He patrols all day Friday and Saturday for us and does that weekly without fail. He represents the department well.”
Vesterfelt is a Eucharist minister and lecturer as a member of St. Timothy’s Catholic Church, where he served as the campus maintenance manager for 15 years and on the renovation committee for 11 years.
He assumed the role of the second president of Morro Bay Beautiful, a volunteer group dedicated to preserving and enhancing the beauty of Morro Bay.
His efforts included helping to secure federal funding for road repairs on Highway 1 as the Morro Bay representative on the San Luis Obispo Council of Governments.
He served on the chamber board for five years, including on the executive board.
Vesterfelt has been an instrumental master of ceremonies coordinator and an 18-year board member of the Cruisin’ Morro Bay Car Show.
“As participants in the Cruisin’ Morro Bay show, we have been amazed at Ken’s ability to coordinate every detail of over 600 entrants for the last 18 years,” said Philip and Katharine Winter, of Morro Bay, in a joint email. “Ken’s goodwill and energy is unparalleled.”
Vesterfelt is married to his high school sweetheart, Heather, and they have a daughter, Stacey 39, who is married with a child and another one on the way. They also have a son, Jason, 38, who is married with three children.