Lazaro Torres was 21 when he opened his first business.
“It took a couple of failures before I hit the nail on the head,” he said.
In fall 2020, he and business partner Raymond Raphael launched Iron Shield Roofing & Restoration. Torres also is an owner of Backyard Custom Pools and Trucraft Homes.
Torres was born in Chicago and moved to Springdale when he was 9. He graduated from Springdale High School in 2013.
He was 14 when he started working in the construction industry. He said the choice was easy to join the field as his family, neighbors and friends worked in it.
“Whenever I started in the industry, I fell in love with it … just building things with my hands,” he said. “I worked for a builder, so it was fun starting with an empty lot and being able to see everything come together from start to finish.”
Iron Shield has an office in downtown Springdale. It operates in Northwest Arkansas and the Fort Smith and New Orleans areas. About 80% of its business comprises installing new roofs on residences. It also provides water mitigation services and restores damaged homes. Following a recent tornado in the area, the company helped mitigate the water damage in homes and repair roofs.
Last fall, after Hurricane Ida made landfall in the New Orleans area, the company helped mitigate water damage in homes and repair roofs there. Torres said his partner has family who lives there, and the company continues to maintain staff in the area.
In 2021, Iron Shield had revenue of $3.2 million. Torres’ 2022 revenue goal is $4 million. The company has seven employees.
Over the next three to five years, Torres would like to expand the business to at least five offices and offer the company’s services in other regions, such as the Oklahoma City and Kansas City metro areas.
Torres said his favorite gadget is a drone that he uses for inspections and photography for his business. He said the most influential professional in his career is his business partner because “he’s built businesses before, his knowledge and patience with me are definitely appreciated.”
Torres enjoys playing golf and spending time with his two daughters.