Hello, this is Ken Baxter of Las Vegas, NV and welcome to my new blog at kenbaxter.com! Today is November 25th, 2013 and I am excited to say that this is my very first post of many more to come. Here you can keep up with all the latest news, developments, updates, and general information pertaining to all of my companies, foundations, and personal endeavors. So let’s get to it, shall we?
One, two, three… blast off!
Let’s begin at the beginning – please allow me to introduce myself! Hello, my name is Ken Baxter, I live in sunny Las Vegas, NV and it is my pleasure to meet you, dear reader. Most people call me “Rocket Man” – now you may be wondering why I got that nickname, so let me share with you one of my most passionate endeavors – space travel!
Ever since I was a young man I’ve always dreamed of how cool it would be to go to outer space. As I got older, as much as I longed for that experience, I reconciled myself to it never happening – I just stopped thinking about it. One day in the fall of 2004, I watched the “60 Minutes” episode about the Ansari X Prize, which is a $10 million prize that was awarded to the first non-government organization capable of building a manned spacecraft that could safely carry a pilot, not to mention a weight load equivalent to two passengers, at least 62 miles above the surface of the Earth…and then do it again within two weeks. Almost unimaginable, I know…but it did happen! The spacecraft, SpaceShipOne, rocketed, for the second time, above our Earth on October 4, 2004 and successfully won the X Prize, and was retired immediately following that exciting feat. It now hangs in the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, as a monument to the ingenuity of those who push the limits of human space flight. Next thing you know, Tier One – the company that designed the craft, spearheaded by engineer Burt Rutan and funded by Paul Allen, was contracted by British billionaire, entrepreneur, and all-around adventurer Richard Branson to produce more commercial space vehicles for his new space tourism venture – Virgin Galactic.
As I was saying, I watched that episode of “60 Minutes” and couldn’t stop thinking about it, so I didn’t hesitate – I saw that and said I was going to be the first one to go up in space. The Monday after the program aired, I had my secretary, Robin, call Virgin Atlantic and get Richard Branson on the phone….well truth be told, she had to leave him a message, but soon after Branson called me back. So in 2005, I wrote the very first $200,000 check and had the honor of becoming Virgin Galactic’s first ticketed passenger on SpaceShipTwo. Suddenly all my childhood dreams will become a reality and I, Ken Baxter, of Orem, Utah, will become the first private astronaut, a space pioneer, and a real Rocket Man!
Over the years, I have successfully sold millions of dollars’ worth of real estate through my real estate company, PMA Realty, built beautiful new homes with my new home building company, Liberty Homes, and along with my wonderful wife, Linda, have founded several non-profit organizations dedicated to bringing manufacturing jobs and processes back to America, lessening the impact of climate change and global warming here on Earth, and improving the quality of education in the USA for the next generation, respectively, through Made in America, Green Global, and the Ken and Linda Baxter Family Foundation. I am proud of all of these accomplishments and am thankful to all those who have helped me grow my businesses and stood by me over the years through thick and thin, however nothing can top my enthusiasm for finally being able to realize my childhood dream of space travel!
On behalf of me, my companies, employees, and contributors, I look forward to sharing much more about this adventure, and all of my other upcoming business and personal ventures, here at kenbaxter.com.
If you would like to learn more about travelling to outer space on the first commercial space vehicle, you can visit the Virgin Galactic website: http://www.virgingalactic.com/.