The University of Massachusetts Amherst Alumni Association will present Raphael Guzman (ECE ’88) with a Distinguished Alumni Service Award at the State House on April 23. The award honors alumni for outstanding and significant contributions of service to a particular community and to the university in the way of financial, volunteer, or advocacy support. Guzman’s award is part of a set of Distinguished Alumni Awards which each represent the highest honor bestowed by the UMass Amherst Alumni Association on alumni, faculty, and friends. Recipients of this prestigious award have translated their UMass Amherst experience into distinguished achievement in the public, business, or professional realms and bring honor to UMass Amherst and to their field of endeavor.
Guzman is an innovative and visionary businessman who believes that a comprehensive education with a multicultural and global vision is the key to success. The president and owner of RM Technologies Inc. (RMT), a general contractor serving New England, Guzman is deeply committed to service in his Lawrence, Massachusetts, community. He has built his reputation by providing opportunities for underprivileged youths to improve their lives through education; granting them the same opportunities that allowed him to succeed.
Born in the Dominican Republic, Guzman immigrated to the United States in December of 1981 as a high school junior. In spite of the language barrier, he graduated with high honors in the spring of 1983. He then enrolled in UMass Amherst and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering.
While at UMass, Guzman was a member of Tau Beta Pi, the engineering honor society, which bestowed him the Alain Leroy Locke award in recognition of his scholarship and service. He also was a member of the Mortar Board National College Senior Honor Society and was recognized as the Most Outstanding Senior by the Minority Engineering Program. In addition, he founded the flagship campus’ first Dominican Club and served in leadership roles in the Bilingual Collegiate Program, the Minority Engineering Program, and AHORA, the first Latino registered student organization on campus.
Guzman was hired into Honeywell Corporation’s Manufacturing Management Program, where he participated in the two-year manufacturing studies program while also attending postgraduate programs in manufacturing engineering at Boston University and business administration at Honeywell Training Center.
Guzman has won numerous awards, including the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Historically Underutilized Business Zone Owner of Year Award, the Immigrant Entrepreneur Award for Outstanding Business Growth, and placement on Fortune’s 2013 Inner City 100, a ranking of the fastest-growing businesses in urban areas.
In 2012, he created the RM Technologies, Inc. Scholarship in the UMass Amherst College of Engineering, which awards $5,000 to students from underprivileged backgrounds who exhibit a strong desire to improve their lives through education. (April 2015)