by KELLEY GUSICH | photos by Soul of Photography

Music, Travel, & Service

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Kimberly and Ray McKewon met in the mortgage business, where they worked until 2005, leaving the business to retire. But their “sideline” of being part of performing rock and pop bands, combined with their entrepreneurial instincts, turned into a full-scale production company: The Xceptional Music Company. “We support local charities with our music,” the McKewons explained, “and we’ve staged such stars as Herman’s Hermits, Smash Mouth, Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons, Spencer Davis, and many others.” Aside from producing these events, the duo are also both performing musicians, with Ray as a player in an Abba tribute band, and Kim as a lead singer in an ‘80s band.

“Life is a continuous journey of lessons, growth, and balance. To appreciate the light, there must be some darkness.” – Kim

The couple considers their dogs Riley and Skye their “children” together, but Ray has two grown children from whom they now have four grandsons. Three of them attend St. Gregory the Great and a charter school, plus the newest grandson, only a few months old, lives in London.

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Ray was in the Navy for 30 years as a Navy diver, with his last reserve assignment as the Commodore of Naval Coastal Warfare. Both are now active in various charitable causes. Kim is on the board of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention and is the Education and Program Services Committee Chair. Her main focus is speaking with schools and other community organizations about mental health and suicide prevention. She’s currently working on a book exploring the oft-misunderstood world of mental health and its effect on individuals and their families. Ray is a founding member of the San Diego Fire Rescue Foundation, and is on the boards of the Kyoto Symposium organization, The Catalina Island Medical Center Foundation, the Jackie Robinson YMCA, and serves as the judge for Rotary’s Camp Enterprise. They have both also been active with other nonprofits including Heartbeat Music Academy, Labrador Rescuers of San Diego, Shelter Pet Partners, and San Diego VeloYouth.


At-A-Glance

Parents: Ray and Kim McKewon
Children: Alison McKewon Bolivar and husband Alvaro; Chris McKewon and wife Betsy
Parents’ Hometowns: Ray – Oklahoma; Kim – California
Parents’ Occupations: The Xceptional Music Company
Community: Fairbanks Ranch in Rancho Santa Fe
Pets: Riley – 5-year-old yellow Lab; Skye – 7-year-old Lab/Australian cattle dog/multi-breed mix. Both adopted from Labrador Rescuers of San Diego
Favorite Places to Visit in Rancho Santa Fe: The Floral Palette, GSB Clothier, Thyme in the Ranch, Ranch Deli, the roads for Kim on her bike, and walking the horse trails in Fairbanks Ranch with our dogs


The McKewons have been in their Rancho Santa Fe home since 2002, having fallen in love with it at first sight, but enjoy getting away to see the world. They take trips with Riley and Skye in their travel trailer, and also like spending time in Catalina, Croatia, and Fiji. Kim is an avid cyclist and rides about 200 miles per week in various terrain. “Some evenings you’ll find us with musicians on a stage and working with our amazing production crew on an event, other nights we’ll be relaxing on the couch, and in between those, we are honored to be out supporting the causes most important to us.”