ODOT employees recognized for their military service

Staff Writer

The Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) District 2 hosted a veterans’ recognition event on Nov. 6 to honor its employees who have served or are currently serving in the U.S. military.
The event took place at ODOT’s Northwood outpost ahead of the Veterans’ Day holiday that will be observed nationally this Saturday.
ODOT Director Jack Marchbanks provided the keynote address for the event that honored the 32 District 2 employees with military service.
“We are blessed and fortunate – I mean that sincerely – we are blessed and fortunate to have you on our team,” said Marchbanks. “We benefit from the discipline and the focus you bring to us.”
ODOT District 2 employees and military veterans Shane Baldwin and Tyler Vaughan spoke during the event regarding their military experience.
Baldwin, who works in the facilities department for ODOT and served in the U.S. Army for five years, said veterans come from all backgrounds and have varying reasons for serving. “No matter the reason, we all answered the call and should be proud of that,” he said.
Vaughan, a project engineer for ODOT, has served 14 years in the Army National Guard and is currently a captain. “Here at ODOT, we still find ourselves doing those sacrifices. whether it’s long nights cleaning roads from snowstorms, long days on the road making sure it’s built correctly, making sure your projects are safe for the traveling public, and then the endless hours making sure your part is done so we have mission success here at ODOT,” he said.
He noted he nominated District 2 for the Freedom Award through the Secretary of Defense, the highest recognition given by the United States government to employers for their support of their employees who serve in the Guard or Reserve. The award winners will be announced in 2024.
His reason for doing so was the personal support he received when he was deployed shortly after he began employment with ODOT. “My boss, Brian French, and my coworker, Todd Hasselbach, both reached out multiple times to my wife and family while I was on deployment for 11 months,” he said.
“Veterans exemplify service before self. We are a better organization with veterans and military members like yourselves working within it,” said ODOT District 2 Deputy Director Pat McColley. “I thank you for continuing into public service right here at ODOT.”
Two plaques – one listing the names of those employees currently serving, and one with the names of those who have served – are on permanent display in the District 2 headquarters in Bowling Green. Each name is listed below their branch of service.
ODOT District 2 is responsible for the maintenance of state highways, U.S. routes, and interstates outside of municipalities in Fulton, Henry, Lucas, Ottawa, Sandusky, Seneca, Williams and Wood counties.


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