Music has always been a core component of alumnus Gerald Guilbeaux’s life.
The Alumni Association would not be what it is today without the support of our volunteers. One of our longest-serving volunteers is Chris Richard. Richard '87 is currently a member of the Alumni Association's Executive Board. When Richard is not volunteering his time with us, he works as the chief engineer at Domingue, Szabo & Associates. Over the many years he has been involved with the Alumni Association, Richard has made a lasting impact on the University and community.
Richard grew up in Lafayette and always knew that UL Lafayette would be where he would attend college. "I never gave any thought to going anywhere else," said Richard. As a civil engineering major, Richard was heavily involved with the American Society of Civil Engineers. He also served as president of the student chapter during his senior year of school. Not only did he receive an excellent education from the University, but he also met his wife, Susan, there. The two met during a calculus class and now have three beautiful children together.
After graduation, Richard and his wife, who is also a civil engineer, moved to Baton Rouge to begin working at the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development. From there, they relocated to Florida to work at a consulting firm. Here, Richard realized that his education at UL Lafayette had truly set him up for success in the working world. "That's [where] I realized that I was just as prepared as anyone else from any other school," said Richard. After spending a few years in Florida, Richard received a call from Domingue, Szabo & Associates, to return to Lafayette and work for them. Richard and his family knew that it was time to come home to their roots and decided to move back to Lafayette. Throughout his time with the firm, Richard has had a hand in many projects around the Acadiana area, including significant upgrades to several water plants.
Richard's journey of volunteering with the Alumni Association began with a simple phone call. Richard received a call from Alumni Association volunteer and past president, Sonny Launey, about joining a steering committee to form a College of Engineering Alumni Chapter. From this phone call, Richard would end up joining the committee and eventually become president of the College of Engineering Alumni Chapter. After several years as chapter president, he was asked to serve on the Alumni Association's executive board and has remained there ever since.
Throughout his time volunteering with the Alumni Association, Richard has helped with several events, including the Alumni Hospitality Tailgate, Spring Gala, and selecting the recipients for the Outstanding Alumni Award. Richard is exceptionally grateful for the memories that he has made while volunteering. "You can meet a ton of people that you wouldn't meet otherwise," said Richard. Due to the generous donation of his time and talents, Richard has helped elevate the Alumni Association and brought honor to the University.
Photo: Chris Richard '87 poses for his 2019-2020 executive board headshot.