Chairman Howard P. "Buck" McKeon
U.S. Congress 1993-2015 (Retired)
Howard Philip “Buck” McKeon was born September 9, 1938, in Los Angeles, California, the eldest of five boys. Buck attended Brigham Young University where he earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Animal Science. He married Patricia Kunz August 25, 1962, and they have six children, thirty-one grandchildren, and one great-grandchild with another due in April.
After his fourth child was born, Buck went into the western wear business with his father, Howard C. McKeon. He orchestrated getting a small business loan from the bank, locating a site, and opening their second store, Howard & Phil’s Western Wear. His four brothers joined the business, and together they expanded the chain to 63 retail locations in California, Nevada, Utah, and Arizona. They were the largest western wear retailer in the nation at the time.
Besides being an astute businessman, Buck has always been concerned about his community. He ran for and was elected to the William S. Hart Union High School Governing Board. He was also Chairman of the Board of the Henry Mayo Newhall Memorial Hospital. As the City of Santa Clarita was incorporated, he ran for the city council. Since he received the most votes, he was elected by his fellow council members as the first Mayor.
Buck was instrumental in organizing Valencia National Bank, a community bank in the Santa Clarita Valley for community members to have access to small business loans. This allowed local business to flourish and also increased jobs in the community. Buck was named the first Chairman of the Valencia National Bank.
Following his first term on the city council Buck ran for the House of Representatives. With the support of his family, friends, and the community, Buck was elected to Congress in November 1992.
Buck was elected by his peers as the President of the Freshman Republican Class of the 103rd Congress. He was appointed the Chairman of the Education and Workforce Committee in 2006 where his priorities were school choice, teacher quality, and greater access to higher education. He was elected Chairman of the Armed Services Committee in 2009. He built on the bi-partisan tradition of the committee and successfully led the Congress to pass the National Defense Authorization Act each year as Chairman. Buck retired from Congress as Chairman in 2015.
Buck is continuing his fight for education and our military in the private sector. With his team at McKeon Group LLC, Buck is doing all he can to work with the decision makers in Washington DC to ensure that all who desire an education can achieve that goal and that our men and women in uniform will have all the tools necessary to accomplish their mission and return home safely.