Eukaryotic ribosomes contain the high-affinity protein kinase C βII (PKCβII) scaffold, receptor for activated C kinase (RACK1), but its role in protein synthesis control remains unclear. We found that RACK1:PKCβII phosphorylates eukaryotic initiation factor 4G1 (eIF4G1) at S1093 and eIF3a at S1364. We showed that reversible eIF4G(S1093) phosphorylation is involved in a global protein synthesis surge upon PKC–Raf–extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 (ERK1/2) activation and in induction of phorbol ester-responsive transcripts, such as cyclooxygenase 2 (Cox-2) and cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor (p21Cip1), or in 5′ 7-methylguanosine (m7G) cap-independent enterovirus translation. Comparison of mRNA and protein levels revealed that eIF4G1 or RACK1 depletion blocked phorbol ester-induced Cox-2 or p21Cip1 expression mostly at the translational level, whereas PKCβ inhibition reduced them both at the translational and transcript levels. Our findings reveal a physiological role for ribosomal RACK1 in providing the molecular scaffold for PKCβII and its role in coordinating the translational response to PKC-Raf-ERK1/2 activation.