ISHPEMING – Andy Sikkema spent many years as the person at the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) who hung the signs honoring other people. Now he’s getting a sign of his own.
The MDOT Roadside Park in Michigamme recently was renamed in Sikkema’s honor. The former manager of MDOT’s Ishpeming Transportation Service Center, Sikkema retired in July after 24 years with the department.
“It is quite an honor,” Sikkema said, “And I’m humbled by the whole thing.”
Prior to joining MDOT, Sikkema worked for seven-and-a-half years as a civilian employee with the Department of Defense in military construction for the Army Corps of Engineers and Air Force. He also worked as a contractor.
He left a job at K.I. Sawyer Air Force Base to work for MDOT on local agency programs in Lansing. He was with that division for about two-and-a-half years, working with counties on road projects. He also worked in MDOT’s Rail Freight Division briefly before returning to the Upper Peninsula as the resident engineer at what was then MDOT’s Ishpeming Engineering Office. That office later became one of MDOT’s first Transportation Service Centers in August 1996.
“My job was really to find great people in order to accomplish great things,” Sikkema said. “And I think we did that.”
The roadside park, commanding a sweeping view of the Lake Michigamme shoreline, was officially dedicated in Sikkema’s honor on Sept. 4.