Owl Companies — Three Generations of History

The family of the Owl Companies dates back to 1919. Owl has had a remarkable yet fascinating journey through triumphs and challenges of the 20th century. During the past nine decades the company evolved from the construction industry to government and military service industries to education and training leaders. At present Owl continues to manage job corps government contracts, handling the needs of a real estate company and provide alternative energy solutions for many industries. The company has grown; diversified and flourished through three generations, nearly a century of continuous growth, project experience, broad capabilities, financial resources and educated foresight. The scope of OWL is expansive, addressing the needs of each era.

Our Founder — Dewey Burden

In 1919 Dewey Burden began his business with a produce truck and a fervent drive to succeed. Always on the job very early Dewey was given the nickname “Owl” which became his trademark and the lasting name of the company for almost a century. His produce delivery business grew and just four years later Dewey had built a fleet of trucks, flat beds, and automobiles and a company of 31 employees to handle the burgeoning business. In the 32 years of Dewey’s tenure, the Owl Company steadily grew to a large service oriented organization, specializing in team and motor hauling, excavating and production of quality building materials, i.e. The Owl Rock Products Company. Service work associated with the petroleum industry was the company’s mainstay through the 1940s. From 1941 to 1946 the company was involved in construction and transportation services to assist with the war effort.

Some of Dewey Burden’s accomplishments:

  • 1919 Bought his first produce truck
  • 1923-1940 Built a trucking and hauling fleet to assist with the oil boom, from Huntington Beach to Signal Hill, which lasted well into the 1940s
  • 1930 Began mining aggregate in the San Gabriel Valley eventually developing an aggregate business into the Owl Rock Products Company
  • 1930s Dewey became a sponsor of race horses at Santa Anita
  • 1938 Built ramps, cranes and platforms for movie sets, such as “Gone With The Wind”
  • 1941-1946 Assisted with the war effort. At Lemoore Airfield runways were built and the airfield maintained. At the Port at Wilmington, Owl hauled and uploaded vast quantities of fuel for the U. S. Marines

Our Second Leader — Joseph Burden

Joseph Burden became President of Owl in 1959. With the onset of his tenure as Chief Executive Officer he set in motion a new direction for the organization. During the next 28 years Joseph developed and diversified the original Owl Family of Companies into one company with a multitude of highly specialized capabilities. Under his helm, Owl Companies were involved in several of the greatest construction programs in United States history. The California Aqueduct, the Minuteman Missile Defense System, California Freeways, and Bay Area Rapid Transit certainly rank among the top of all time greatest man-made structures. The Owl Companies also set the world record for highway slipform paving and pioneered new methods of construction as well as transporting and installing cumbersome and heavy industrial equipment.

Some of the Joseph Burden’s accomplishments:

  • 1965 Modernization of the Minute Man Defense System
  • 1971 California Aqueduct
  • 1968-1978 California Freeway System
  • 1958-1981 Evolution of the Owl Rock Products Company
  • 1971 Royal Owl – Famous Race Horse
  • 1975-1988 Sugar Ray’s Youth Foundation
  • 1975 Big Creek Hydroelectric Plant
  • 1973-1980 Formed Global Associates
  • 1976 Hill Air Force Base Hanger
  • 1979 Transporting the Big A to Angel Stadium
  • 1965 -1989 Performs logistical and support services on Island of Kwajalein, South Pacific
  • 1978 Development of Corporate Headquarters

The Man at the Helm Today — Gregory Burden

In 1981, third generation Greg Burden assumed the leadership role at The Owl Companies. Greg’s vigilant guidance coupled with his steadfast pursuit of new innovational opportunities, has transformed Owl to include companies that address energy alternatives and education and training of youth and real estate development. Greg formed Owl Energy, maintained and engaged in new real estate acquisitions, (Tecolote), and managed and operated CSD (Career Systems Development).

Some of Gregory Burden's accomplishments:

  • 1981 Building New Owl Headquarters
  • 1978 -1989 Performs logistical and support services on Island of Kwajalein, South Pacific
  • 1981-Present Tecolote – Real Estate Portfolio
  • 1985-Present Owl Energy Resources
  • 1985-Present Development of Small Hydro Electric Projects
  • 2000-Present CSD – Career Systems Development, Education and Training "out of school", "out of work" youth