Senior Diego Gonzalez Continues Family Legacy in Construction


Diego Gonzalez

Working with his employee Gavino Torres, business owner Diego Gonzalez holds the ladder steady.

Diego Gonzalez, a senior at RHS, has spent all of his time and energy to continue the family construction business after the passing of his father.
“When I was 16, I had already been doing construction work and then my dad passed away. I started doing work for my grandpa and uncle until I got my own side jobs,” Gonzalez said. “Then they told me I was ready, and I kind of just went off on my own.”
At this time, Gonzalez already had experience in the construction field thanks to his father’s company.
“I really just grew up doing construction,” Gonzalez said. “My dad first had me working on construction sites with him when I was ten years old, so I already knew a lot about the field.” However, Gonzalez’s main reason behind restarting the company was not to keep the family legacy going, but for the stability of his mom and siblings.
“After my dad passed away, my mom was a house mom, so I was afraid we wouldn’t have any money and I realized I needed to work just in case my family needed me,” Gonzalez said. “I’m just glad I got to work in a field I’m actually passionate about.”
Gonzalez’s dad was a self-contractor, so he had to restart the company after he went off on his own.
“Since my dad was mostly a self-contractor, I wasn’t able to take over his company, and I basically had to start from scratch when I finally started doing construction on my own,” Gonzalez said.
Because he was so passionate about his work and providing for his family, Gonzalez began working more with his company and his school life was struggling.
“I had to learn a lot of time management skills because I really learned that time is money, but I still wanted to be in school,” Gonzalez said.
As his company began to grow, Gonzalez had to find a way to manage his company and school at the same time without losing business.
“I started subcontracting some of my jobs out to other companies which means I hire other professionals to do the jobs and my company gets a percentage of the money from the job,” Gonzalez said. “I’m still in charge of it, but somebody else does the work.”
This change Gonzalez made in his company allows to have more time for himself and school, but for the jobs he doesn’t subcontract, Gonzalez has a different approach on managing his sites.
“When I’m at school I leave my workers to run the jobsites on their own because I trust them and know I can always count on them,” Gonzalez said.
However, the amount of employees Gonzalez has varies depending on the current job sites his company is working on.
“If I’m just painting a couple rooms in a house I might have one worker, but if we are doing a whole house I usually have two to three workers for that project. If we are doing a bigger commercial building I usually have a whole crew of ten to twenty people,” Gonzalez said.
Some of his employees are also students at RHS, so that affects the work schedule for some of Gonzalez’s jobs.
“I usually work 25 to 30 hours a week depending on the size of a job and how long we have to complete it. Because of that, I usually try to finish all of my homework while I’m at school,” Gonzalez’s employee Gavino Torres said.
Gonzalez says he usually lets his workers go home around 7pm or earlier everyday, depending on the job and how much work gets done. However, Gonzalez puts in extra time at each jobsite.
“I typically go to a jobsite after school each day, and I let my workers leave at the usual time, but I stay later each night because I’m still in charge of the job and making sure it gets done,” Gonzalez said.
Because Gonzalez spends a lot of time at each jobsite, he has earned the respect of his employees.
“It’s nice having a boss who’s close to my age because he’s always around at the jobsites and he’s not super bossy like some older bosses would be. It’s also nice to have my boss be my friend,” Gonzalez’s employee sophomore Ruben Llanos said.
Gonzalez has built a work environment within his company that allows his employees to all be friendly with one another, and it has created a lot of success within his company.
“I’m glad he reached out to a bunch of people he knew to start working for him because we were all willing to help,” Torres said. “It’s a really cool environment because we are just a bunch of friends working together to make money while having fun, and supporting Diego’s business at the same time.”
In order to keep his job sites running smoothly, and to make sure things are done right, Gonzalez has found employees who enjoy their job within his business and are passionate about the work just like him.
“I really like working with Diego’s company because construction is very hands-on and I’m always learning something new,” Torres said. “I have learned the skills to do things such as painting, flooring, drywall installation and many other home improvement skills.”
Because of the versatility of Gonzalez’s employees, his company is able to work on a wide range of different types of projects.
“We do a lot of different jobs including interior and exterior residential buildings and reconstructing commercial buildings. My company has the ability to do framing, drywall, carpentry, painting, and flooring,” Gonzalez said. “We can pretty much provide any service to a customer except plumbing and electrical.”
Overall, Gonzalez has big plans for the future of his company, and he plans to expand the company’s construction abilities in the near future.
“After high school I want to go to get an associates degree and get a builders permit, which will allow me to expand the capabilities of my company,” Gonzalez said. “I also want to start doing real estate, so eventually I can build houses and sell them on my own without having to pay for outside services.”