About the author
About the Author - Arlen R. Isham
Arlen was born on May 17, 1944 in Lansing, Michigan. His family moved to a farm near Carson City in 1949, where he grew up as a farmer's kid. He remembers going to the movies in Carson City for $0.15
His early life consisted of milking cows, feeding the animals, and farming nearly 400 acres. Part of the farming included picking up stones (one of the world's worst jobs), hoeing beans; four rows at a time, maple syrup production in the spring each year, and driving tractor to help his Dad farm.
Arlen decided he did not want to farm, so went to Michigan State University and graduated in 1966 with a degree in Chemical Engineering. One summer to make money for school, he worked at a pickle factory for $1.10 per hour.
He left Michigan in 1966 with everything he owned in a new 345 HP 1966 Ford 7-liter model and drove to Houston to work for Diamond Alkali. Over 42 years, Arlen's work included engineering, plant management, chemical trading, and road building in Mexico, to finally Manager of Operations for KMG-Bernuth, Inc. Arlen retired at the end of December, 2007.
Arlen met Jo Beth in late 1966, and eventually married on April 27, 1968. They had three children, Andrea K. Mankin, Matthew S. Isham, and Jeffrey R. Isham.
Jo Beth & Arlen moved into an active adult community, Heritage Grand in Dec. 2006. They had been in their previous home for 38 years.
His major hobbies have been skiing, running, biking, triathlons, & hiking including about 104 marathons, ultra-marathons, and organizing many adventure trips, such as crossing the Grand Canyon from rim to rim. In 2020, he passed 52,000 miles in 42 years of running. Arlen says he is the only person in the world that can say they have run 40 Houston Marathons, climbed Kilimanjaro, ran 100 miles in one day, completed an Ironman triathlon, and done a double crossing of the Grand Canyon in one day. He did this with the support and participation of many friends, who he thanks for helping make it possible. He was a past organizer and coordinator for the Houston Marathon Legacy Pace Team and was the volunteer manager of the Houston marathon's warehouse. He also organized many other adventure and travel trips for his family and friends.
Jo Beth & Arlen each have a "Life List" of things they want to do, and since his retirement, they continued to cross things off their list and add new ones. Arlen can occasionally be seen driving around in his vintage 1969 red XKE Jaguar. He also has a complete set of Louie L'Amour books.
Arlen's motto is "What you can conceive, you can achieve."