Get to Know Kinter Van Horn

October 24, 2023
Kinter Van Horn

Kinter Van Horn, Social Spotlight

What Kinter Van Horn enjoys most about what he does comes through working with others. There are many aspects to his work as [Title] – from collaborating with the heavy equipment operators to gain an understanding of site constraints, to consulting with owners to define their objectives, to working alongside designers to bring a project vision to life. As an owner’s project manager, he appreciates the fact that he’s the one entrusted to bring it all together.

“I think of it like this,” he says, “the contractors are the musicians, the composer is the architect, the clients are the people in the audience, and we’re the conductor. If it goes great, everyone claps and all you do is give credit to everyone else. If things go wrong, you eat a tomato.” 

Construction has been a core theme in Kinter’s life since he was a child. He recalls two instances that set him on his career path, and both can be attributed to his father –  an Episcopalian priest, a Harvard graduate, and past President of the Mental Health Association of California. He was also a self-taught carpenter, woodworker, and mechanic. 

When Kinter’s family set sights on moving to Malibu his father bought a book, read about how to build a house, and then constructed their former 4,000 square foot residence. 

He also remembers stumbling upon an old, abandoned moped in a puddle while hiking with his childhood friends. Kinter rolled it home and his father took one look and said “let’s go get a book”

“So we did,” Kinter recalls. “We took that bike apart and spread it across the garage – piston, cylinder, ring, everything. We put it back together again and it ran. That’s where I realized that I liked the idea of how to put things together.” 

Kinter put himself through the police academy, working as a sheriff’s deputy in central California before becoming a line officer in Santa Monica. He wanted to work for the state parks department, but the wait list for that position was long. He interviewed with a contractor and he hasn’t turned back since. 

His coast-to-coast move to Rhode Island came with family considerations, and he remembers  flipping through many pages of printed MapQuest directions on his drive across the country to his new home, which happened right down the road from KCM President Dan Secone. 

“I was out for a run one morning when Dan approached me. He asked if I worked in construction and I said yes. Then he said ‘I bet you’re a superintendent’ citing the truck in the driveway and the long hours I worked, noting that they roughly left the house at the same time in the morning and got home late. Our relationship started there.”

Kinter spent nearly twenty years of his career as a  superintendent at KBE Building Corporation where he developed a knack for effective communication and coordination among multiple departments and disciplines.

“When I go into meetings, I can say that I have over 20 years of in the field experience –  both on the construction management side and the project management side.  When things come up, I can understand it from both angles. When you’ve been a superintendent on big jobs, you’ve been through some pressure cookers, so nothing really rattles me anymore.”

Given his prior relationship to Dan Secone, Kinter reached out to Dan when he started working at KCM. Kinter was looking for a change. He interviewed with Ray Keough and his background in the construction industry and his ability to effectively work and communicate with others made him the right fit at KCM. 

“What I like about KCM is that everything is just a little different. Every project is different, every client is a little different. But the piece Dan sold me on was ‘we do the right thing for the client – that’s it.’ There wasn’t anything murky. We work in the best interest of our clients. That’s what matters.”