RTF President, Ken Hower, on Episode 147


Ken Hower and the Rubicon Trail Foundation is all about education, that’s their mission. As a 501(c)(3) Education foundation, RTF hopes to educate all to enhance the future health of the Rubicon Trail. There’s a lot going on right now with the Trail, listen in so you can stay informed, it really is fascinating stuff! Be sure to listen on your favorite podcast app – subscribe so you don’t miss anything, a new episode drops every Thursday morning, early!


5:30 – he was all kinds of notorious

13:06 – so, playing in a band, how long was your hair?

28:22 – “There are people who wonder what the F* happened, there are people that make Sh*t happen, and there are people that watch it happen.”

37:20 – not that people were mistreating (the trail) intentionally, it was just not knowing

46:34 – it was the community that extracted them, just as it should be

47:31 – **be sure to listen** the history of the law regarding the Rubicon trail starts here

1:17:35 – read the mission statement

We want to thank our sponsors Maxxis Tires and 4Low Magazine.


[00:01:47.240] – Big Rich Klein

on today’s episode of Conversations with Big Rich, we have Ken Howard. Ken is an offroader, a musician, current president of RTF, which is Rubicon Trail Foundation. And this is the one I need to ask about. He is a field readiness architect, and so I’m not sure what that entails, but we’re going to find out. Ken, thank you so much for coming on board and spending some time with us.

[00:02:16.020] – Ken Hower

Thanks, Rich, for having me on here. I really appreciate it. I listened to your podcast, so this is going to be strange hearing my own voice.

[00:02:23.700] – Big Rich Klein

Everybody says that I got to listen to mine over and over every time I record, then edit.

[00:02:31.120] – Ken Hower

Yeah, you poor dude.

[00:02:33.280] – Big Rich Klein

Yeah, I hate listening to my own voice. Okay, well, anyway, let’s get started and let’s find out where you were born and raised.

[00:02:42.760] – Ken Hower

Yeah, so nowhere near the Rubicon, but still in California. So I was born and raised in Burlingame, California, which is not on the peninsula between about halfway between San Francisco and San Jose. It’s a very expensive suburb, bedroom community of Silicon Valley and San Francisco. So people who live in both, like, in the school district, so it’s a very expensive place to live. Hillsborough is right next to it. But my dad and my family are I’m the fourth generation that was born and raised. My dad was born in a house on Peninsula Avenue in Burlingame, and my grandmother’s house is a historical landmark on Burlingame Avenue. Oh, wow. Yeah. So my family has a lot of history. My grandmother, believe it or not, was the first Miss Burlingame in 1935.

[00:03:38.920] – Big Rich Klein

Wow. First Miss Burlingame.

[00:03:41.250] – Ken Hower


[00:03:41.900] – Big Rich Klein

So I have to ask a question. Were you born at Peninsula Hospital?

[00:03:46.860] – Ken Hower

I was born at Mills.

[00:03:48.210] – Big Rich Klein

Oh, at Mills.

[00:03:48.870] – Ken Hower


[00:03:49.230] – Big Rich Klein

I was born at Peninsula.

[00:03:51.180] – Ken Hower

Oh, wow. Okay. All right. We had no idea.

[00:03:53.630] – Big Rich Klein

We were yeah, I grew up in San Bruno.

[00:03:56.650] – Ken Hower

Okay. Yeah. Little toddlers. Run around where you can have it.

[00:04:00.770] – Big Rich Klein

Yes. Went to Cappuccino and cruised the L just like everybody else did. Shut it down.

[00:04:08.260] – Ken Hower

Yes. Cruising the L Camino. That’s so funny. We just dated ourselves. Hardcore right there.

[00:04:14.090] – Big Rich Klein

Oh, absolutely.

[00:04:16.340] – Ken Hower

I graduated from Burlingame High School. My dad graduated from Burlingame High School. In fact, the vice principal of Burlingame High, when I went there in the 70s asked me if I was related to Ken Hower. I said, yeah, it’s my dad. And he went, Vic shoot, I can’t remember Mancini as his name.

[00:04:45.040] – Big Rich Klein

That’s funny, because my dad went to San Mateo High.

[00:04:49.120] – Ken Hower

Bear Cap.

[00:04:51.600] – Big Rich Klein

They started cap. Everybody was you had to start as a freshman. They worked their way up. And so he went to San Mateo instead of cap. They would have started a full four year he would have ended up going there. My principal l that’s the one was one of his counselors in high school. And my dad was well, he was American Graffiti millionaire that drove the yellow, the TCOP. That’s what he was like, that he might have been in the principal’s office a few times.

[00:05:30.880] – Ken Hower

Yeah, I suspect that my dad was, because my family owned an auto repair shop, so that now we’re starting to get into the automotive portion. They owned an auto repair shop that everybody knew about. Burling game. It was called Hower Auto Repair, and it was started by my uncle, my great uncle, my dad’s uncle. And that’s where my dad started working. When out of out of school, he started working there. And of course, I worked there when I was a little kid, sweeping up, grab, stain, oil spill, stuff like that, break jobs. But he was kind of notorious for driving around town with cars with just the frame and stuff, and the cops would chase them around town in it. So, yeah, I think there was a little rebellion in the older generation from the Hower family. There were five boys in the family, so they were pretty notorious around town, I would imagine.  READ MORE

Follow Big Rich

SHare this article

This site uses cookies to offer you a better browsing experience. By browsing this website, you agree to our use of cookies.