Carl Andrew Rasmussen was born to Peter and Ella Rasmussen in Greeley, Colorado, on Sept. 13, 1919. Carl grew up working on the family farm alongside his seven brothers and sisters – Harold, Burt, Paul, Kenneth, Gladys and Fern. His father, an immigrant from Denmark, believed a person needed to earn their place at the table, and the Rasmussen children learned the value of a good day’s work and a job well done.
During World War II, Carl served honorably in the United States Navy Seabees in Okinawa. After returning home, Carl and his bride, Hazel, moved to Southern California for the weather. They stayed for the family and the business. Together, they had five children: Dean, Larry, Charles, Ella, and James.
Carl worked as an operator and superintendent for L.M. Wilson Construction Company for 13 years before striking out on his own. More than 50 years later, the company that bears his name – C. A. Rasmussen, Inc. – continues to be a leading general engineering contractor in Southern California. Carl’s tradition of maintaining a strong sense of family has endured as Carl’s grandson, Adam Rasmussen, is the third generation to join the company’s work force.
In 1988, Carl was diagnosed with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, and he passed away in May the following year. Before his diagnosis, Carl sold his shares of of the company to his sons and was able to enjoy his retirement years raising horses and playing with his grandchildren.
Carl was a man of his word and taught his sons many of the values he learned growing up on his family’s farm: work hard, be honest, and keep your family close.
After working for more than a decade as an operator and superintendent with the L. M. Wilson Co., Carl A. Rasmussen decided to go into business for himself, and opened an office on a dusty road in Lancaster, California. Within five years, C. A. Rasmussen, Co., took over the operations of Marion Wright Construction, and Carl asked his sons Dean and Larry to join the business. Soon, the company incorporated, and Carl’s third son, Charlie, came fresh out of high school to work with his father.
Carl Rasmussen announced his retirement in 1977, and the three sons took over running the company. As the Southern California landscape changed and the housing market boomed, C. A. Rasmussen, Inc. grew with the times, moving its headquarters from Lancaster to Simi Valley, in the early 1980s.
The company expanded into Northern California when it acquired Piombo Construction in Santa Rosa. During the ’90s, C. A. Rasmussen employees and equipment could be found on jobs stretching from San Diego to northern border of California. When the Northridge Earthquake struck in 1994, C. A. Rasmussen, Inc. was a key player in cleaning up the collapsed freeways and helping Los Angeles commuters go back to work.
By 2002, Dean and Larry Rasmussen retired from the business, and Charlie became president and sole owner. Charlie decided to downsize the business and focus its operations to the Southern California region. He also brought in his son Adam, as the third generation of Rasmussen men took on the construction business.
After 30 years in Simi Valley, C. A. Rasmussen, Inc. built a new company headquarters in Valencia and opened its doors in 2007. Since that time, the company has worked on dozens of multi-million dollar contracts that continue to shape Southern California’s landscape. C. A. Rasmussen, Inc. has won numerous awards recognizing its work from the California Department of Transportation, American Public Works Association, and the Southern California Contractors Association.