TitleSletten, Ken (Kenneth G.) oral history
|Dennis, Eric, Videographer|
|Sletten, Kenneth G., Interviewee|
|Wadsworth, Duane, Interviewer|
PublisherComputer History Museum
Place of PublicationMountain View, California
DescriptionSletten was born in Helena, Montana, before moving with his family to Billings at the age of five. In high school, he did odd jobs that always revolved around some aspect of construction, including digging ditches for the city water company and working in a warehouse that housed construction supplies. Sletten attended the University of Colorado on a Naval Reserve Officers Training Corps (NROTC) scholarship, where he received a Bachelor of Science degree in civil engineering. In his sophomore year at the University of Colorado, he transferred from the Navy to the Marine Corps. As a Marine, Sletten served in Korea and also made his first trip to the West Coast, where he recalls being stationed in Oceanside, California. After nearly a year spent recovering from an injury he sustained in Korea, Sletten signed up for Stanford Business School in 1954 at the urging of a close friend. His first job after graduating from Stanford in 1956 was with the construction company, Williams and Burrows.
In 1962, Sletten teamed up with Onslow “Rudy” Rudolph. Together they formed the general construction and engineering company Rudolph and Sletten. Rudolph and Sletten would construct buildings for some of Silicon Valley’s most historic companies including Fairchild Semiconductor, National Semiconductor, Memorex, Xerox PARC, AMD, and Apple. Rudolph and Sletten developed groundbreaking business techniques for their company including fast-track construction, emphasized the importance of safety by keeping their employees up to date on the latest standards and protocols, and implemented a top-notch education, training, and recruiting program for new hires. As a result from their stellar work in Silicon Valley, Rudolph and Sletten have also become the go-to construction company for biotech, pharmaceutical, education, government, and health care facilities throughout California.