Loren Acton aboard the Space Shuttle Challenger.

On July 29, 1985 at Florida’s Kennedy Space Center, I watched my father launch into earth’s orbit on the Space Shuttle Challenger. I won’t say it was like any other ordinary day. It wasn’t. It couldn’t be. Watching a spacecraft launch is amazing and transformative. And at 3,500 miles per hour (that’s roughly 1 mile per second) it only took 150 seconds for the Challenger to leave our atmosphere and embark on NASA mission STS-51F.

Most people think of astronauts as the crew that actually operate the space ship. A better way to look at an astronaut is anyone who…


How to build a successful construction company, in one of the most competitive markets in the world, during an economic downturn.

It seems simple at first. A man in a truck (aka Joe) is told by his boss that the construction company he works for is running low on work. Joe’s boss doesn’t have a gig for him. Suddenly, Joe is in a tight spot. But, as fortune would have it, Joe’s neighbor needs work done on his home, and commissions him to work on his project. Suddenly, Joe is his own contractor.

That was me. I was Joe. But nothing worth doing is ever really that simple. Building a company is hard work, although it’s also very rewarding. Building a…


More people have probably been to the top of Mt. Everest than an old growth redwood tree.

The Grandfather Tree.

It was 2007. My wife and I were sitting next to an iron stove in a cabin in the Santa Cruz mountains, admiring the majesty of the old growth redwood trees peering out at the pacific ocean. I remember wondering what was up there at the very top and how the view must be fantastic.

We visited the cabin often and shortly after I found a book about climbing old growth redwood trees. The book is called Wild Trees: A Story of Passion and Daring, written by Richard Preston. …

Stan Acton

Founder. CEO. Redwood climber. Housing Advocate at Acton ADU.

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