Kleberg selected as Golden Spur honoree

Calves grazing on the Giles Ranch. (Journal photo by Kylene Scott.)

Stephen J. “Tio” Kleberg of Kingsville, Texas, has been selected as the 2024 National Golden Spur recipient for his contributions to the ranching and livestock industries, according to a news release from the Ranching Heritage Association. Kleberg will receive the National Golden Spur Award at the Lubbock Memorial Civic Center in Lubbock, Texas, during the annual National Golden Spur Award Honors on Oct. 5.

Kleberg served as the vice president of agricultural operations for the legendary King Ranch from 1971-98. He then served on the board of directors of King Ranch, Inc. from 1998 until 2021. In addition to his contributions to the success of King Ranch, Kleberg tirelessly served the ranching and livestock industries.

A longtime director of the American Quarter Horse Association, Kleberg served as one of the youngest AQHA presidents in 1985. He was inducted into the AQHA Hall of Fame in 1997. Kleberg was also a director for the National Cutting Horse Association and the Texas & Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association.

Presentation of the National Golden Spur Award is a joint annual recognition given by six of the leading state and national ranching and livestock organizations, including TCFA.