Michigan Department of Transportation’s (MDOT) Randy Van Portfliet, deputy chief engineer, bureau director of Field Services and Superior Region engineer, has announced plans to retire at the end of 2016.
“It’s hard to put into words, what MDOT means to me,” Van Portfliet says. “The culture of MDOT and the people who work here are amazing. I’m thankful to have had the opportunity to learn so much, to meet so many folks and to be part of the transportation profession of the state and national levels. I know that I will miss the interaction with my friends and colleagues.”
He has served at MDOT since 1977, beginning as a bridge designer in Lansing. He went on to work at construction assignments at the then-called Kalamazoo and Grand Rapids districts and the Lansing central office. He was the first region engineer appointed during MDOT’s reorganization into regions and Transportation Service Centers. He served as an interim executive secretary for the Mackinac Bridge Authority in 1997.
Van Portfliet has served on the American Association of State Highway Transportation Officials (AASHTO) Standing Committee on Research, the Governor’s Traffic Safety Advisory Commission, the AASHTO Special Committee on Wireless Communication Technology and as MDOT’s representative to the Great Lakes Regional Transportation Operations Coalition.
In his current position, Van Portfliet is responsible for MDOT operations in the Superior Region (which includes the entire Upper Peninsula), and has statewide oversight for Research Administration, Safety and Security, Construction, Central Maintenance, and Central Operations.
“Randy has committed much of his life to the State of Michigan and everyone’s safe and efficient travel,” says state transportation sirector Kirk T. Steudle. “He agreed to wear two hats the past few years, managing the Superior Region while also heading up the Bureau of Field Services. Like many in the department, Randy showed how we can do more with less after the reorganization. Randy was a mentor to many and a personal friend and mentor to me.”