Abramowski named Salisbury Lions Club Man of the Year
Published 12:00 am Sunday, January 25, 2015
Thomas C. Abramowski was named the Salisbury Lions Club Man of the Year. Abramowski owns and operates Rockwell Farms.
Dr. Albert Aymer, presenter of the award, talked about Abramowski’s history. He was born in Hicksville, NY (Long Island area). He graduated from Cornell University with a major in agricultural economics. He started his working career at the Standard Register, then started his own business, eventually selling it to his partner.
Aymer explained that Abramowski noticed how much money people were paying at the local florists. He thought that if the flowers were cheaper, then people would buy them more often and on a more regular basis, as they do Europe. He opened his own shop, Daisy Garden. After running it for some time, he went into the wholesale business and started his own greenhouse operation on Long Island. He was the major supplier for a chain of florists called Flowertime.
In 1979, Abramowski and his wife Dottie decided to move south and bought some land in Eastern Rowan County. They started a half-acre greenhouse operation, growing annuals and mums. Today, the operation has grown into a 36-acre modern greenhouse with 11 acres of outside growing space on a farm of 147 acres.
In the nation’s top 100 Growers, Rockwell Farms is ranked 47th in the nation and is in the top five of agricultural income producers in Rowan County.
For more 30 years he has provided free flowers for the city of Salisbury and its flower beds. For more than 35 years, he has been providing free poinsettias to the Salisbury Civitan Club, as well as donating free flowers to the Rowan County Soil Conservation and to other clubs and organizations.
He has been a major sponsor in many Lions Club activities, such as the golf tournament and sale of brooms. He has also worked with the school’s local FFA chapters.
Abramowski is a supporter of Meroney Theater, Salisbury Station, Waterworks, Salisbury Academy and others. He is a supporter of the Good Shepherd Clinic, Rowan County Dental Clinic as well as activities for physically and mentally challenged children.
The Abramowskis have three grown children: Andrea, Colby and Bryan, who all graduated from Salisbury High School. While the two girls have pursued professional careers, Bryan has returned to the farm and is working toward taking over the operation.
In other award presentations, Lori Swaim was named Lion of the Year for the second time. She was also honored in 2009. Swaim is treasurer of the club.
It was the 72nd recognition of Man or Woman of the Year and Lion of the Year in the Salisbury Lion’s Club.