This month’s question-and-answer session is with Dr. Mohamed Rachadi, who has been in the pest management industry for more than three decades. His newly published book is titled The American Dream for Immigrant Entrepreneurs … A Beginner’s Guide to Freedom, Fame and Fortune in the USA. Fifty percent of all proceeds from the book go to the Rachadi Associates Foundation, which is focused on helping children on the education and healthcare fronts.
1. What made you decide to emigrate from Morocco in 1970?
To pursue medical studies. I was 20, attending a French Jesuit school in Morocco, when I was given a soccer scholarship to St. John Fisher College in Rochester, N.Y. I didn’t know any English, only French and Arabic. I enrolled in a New York business school for a semester to learn English through learning typing and shorthand.
As a pre-med student at St. John Fisher, I did well in math and science. But because of my language barrier, English and social sciences were difficult. I ended up not qualifying for medical school — I didn’t have the funds anyway. Someone suggested I major in medical entomology instead, and I found I liked it. I attended Fordham University in the Bronx, N.Y., for my master’s and doctoral degrees; it took 10 years.
After my graduation in 1983, I married Connie Parrinello, a native New Yorker, and moved to California, where Connie was working for International Paper Co. While looking for a job, I met Lon Records, then-president of Target Specialty products, and his brother Rich, who invited me to attend one of the workshops for PMPs and network with manufacturers. After several years of working for various industry manufacturers and for my own companies, I am now a “retired and rewired” active entrepreneur/author/speaker, managing Rachadi Associates.
2. After having lived in the United States for nearly five decades, working and raising a family, what made you decide to write this book now?
Two years ago, I asked myself an important question about my purpose here in this world. The answer was to give back to the community, the country and the world. I was blessed to live my dream in this beautiful country. Writing this book is my way of giving back.
When I was growing up, I knew a lot of kids who couldn’t go to school because of their situation. I’ve known young children who died because they lacked access to healthcare. I always felt that once I was in a position to raise funds, I would find a way to help. (Editor’s Note: For more details about both the book and foundation, please visit RachadiAssociates.net.)
3. How long did it take you to write the book from start to finish?
I have friends who run a mentoring program that coaches you on how to write a book in 30 days. Their platform basically is if you write 10 minutes a day for 30 days, you can have a 10-chapter book. Their program also aids in editing, proofreading, layout and marketing. I wrote from April to May, but editing and proofing did take a while! We launched the book on Nov. 27.
4. Is the pest management industry still part of your consulting business, or are you devoting most of your time to this project?
I am still involved as a consultant and a speaker — and as an associate member of Talk Fusion, I assist entrepreneurs on using WebRTC Video Technology platforms. My plan for 2019 is to continue to write “how to succeed” books and make myself available as an inspirational speaker.
5. What do you hope readers learn from your book?
This book can teach both immigrant and non-immigrant entrepreneurs eight strategies to becoming successful in the U.S. economy today, by providing solutions to problems and by assimilating and adapting in any new community smoothly and quickly. It has chapters on how to set goals, have the right mindset, learn from others, share your story and give back to the community. Its mission is to promote how to do good in life and business.