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Guillermo Gallardo
President


Complete Welding & Cutting Supplies
Pomona, CA

Category:  Owner/Entrepreneur
 
High School:  La Zaro Cardenas High School
Tijuana, MX
 
College:  Riverside Community College
Riverside, CA

But entrepreneurship is in my genes. At 28, I opened my own store using $50,000 from a loan against my house. It was just a small shop, but within a few years I could afford to open two more. Five years after I went out on my own, I bought the company I started at, after my old boss died.

How did you get interested in your career?
Right out of high school I started driving trucks for a welding supply company in California. I did that for four years until I broke a finger rolling a cylinder, and then they put me a the counter. Working in the shop made me want to learn more about welding so I enrolled at Riverside Community College. Eventually I worked my way up to store manager and then an opportunity in sales came up. I found out that's what I do best.

But entrepreneurship is in my genes. At 28, I opened my own store using $50,000 from a loan against my house. It was just a small shop, but within a few years I could afford to open two more. Five years after I went out on my own, I bought the company I started at, after my old boss died.

Why is your job important?
Nothing is built without welding supplies. Even if it's plastic, it came from a mold, and that has to start with an alloy. Welding is part of every industry. It's one for the last industries that will ever die.

What advice do you have for young people who are considering this career?
They need to stay focused. For 10 years I was making $10 to $15 an hour. But I was learning. If anyone had told me I would end up owning my own business, I would have worked for free. The experience and knowledge I gained to start my own business was priceless.

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