Wendell Lundberg to Receive Honorary Doctorate

Wendall Lundberg, '53, Industrial Arts, will receive an Honorary Doctorate at the Commencement ceremony on Sunday, May 26.

Wendell Lundberg is the second of four boys born to Albert and Frances Lundberg. In 1937, Wendell and brothers Eldon, Homer and Harlan moved with their parents to Richvale, California. Wendell and his brothers pioneered organic rice production in the 1960s, becoming the first farmers in America to successfully grow organic rice. Lundberg Family Farms has become the top grower and marketer of rice products in the natural channel, with products sold throughout the United States and Canada.

Wendell and his brothers established a culture of environmental stewardship, integrity, respect, and continuous improvement that has led to a number of awards for the Lundberg Family Farms, including California Clean Technology Game Changer by Grow-
California in 2011, Sustainability Award by Nutrition Business Journal in 2011, the 2009 Organic Leadership Award for Achievement in Growing Organic Agriculture from the Organic Trade Association, the 2009 Agricultural Stewardship Award and the 2007 California Workplace of the Year by the Employer Resource Institute.

After graduating from Biggs High School, Wendell attended the University of California, Davis, where he studied agronomy. Wendell was one of the founding members of the Cal-Aggie Flying Farmers Club, learning to fly at age 19 and igniting a passion for aviation that persists to this day.

Wendell traveled to Australia to manage a rice experiment in Darwin, returning to Richvale in 1955 to farm rice with his father and brothers. His trip to Australia began a lifelong love of world travel that took Wendell to Africa, Europe, and South America, among other destinations.

Wendell transferred to CSU, Chico in 1950 and graduated in 1953. Wendell met his wife Carolyn Osborn in 1968. They were married three years later.
They have three children, Joe, Jessica and Alysicia.

Wendell has remained committed to CSU, Chico and its programs, serving on the advisory boards of the University, the College of Agriculture, and the education department. He was the 1996 CSU, Chico and College of Agriculture Distinguished Alumnus. Wendell’s commitment to service extends beyond the University and into the surrounding community. He has served as a director of the Butte County Rice Growers Association, director of Trico Bancshares, member of the California Rice Industry Committee, director of North State Crime Stoppers, president of the Chico Chapter Experimental Aircraft Association, and elder of Chico Evangelical Free Church.

Wendell Lundberg earned his bachelor’s degree in Industrial Arts and a credential from CSU, Chico in 1953.