Thomas A. Coleman, PE

Thomas A. Coleman
  • BS Civil Engineering 1957

Thomas A. Coleman completed his baccalaureate degree in civil engineering in 1957 at Michigan Tech and later earned a master’s degree at Michigan State in 1973. After graduation, he joined the Michigan State Highway Department, now the Michigan Department of Transportation. His MDOT career spanned 40 years in variable positions starting as a trainee and retiring as Deputy Director for Operations in 1997. In his early years, the interstate system was born and Tom was assigned to the Kalamazoo District working on I-94, I-96, I-69 and US -31 and US- 131 as Assistant Soils Engineer. He later transferred to the Detroit District in a similar capacity. He became a Registered Professional Engineer in 1962. The next transfer was to Lansing Headquarters as a geotechnical engineer doing creative work statewide involving drainage, pavement design, soil reinforcement, lightweight materials, high capacity piles, construction soils problems, erosion control, and environment issues. He then became a grading and drainage specialist in the Construction Office and later Assistant Construction Engineer. In 1989 he was appointed District Engineer for the 10 county Cadillac District which was responsible for 1000 miles of state highway. In 1995 he returned to Lansing as Deputy Director for Operations in charge of all Districts. One of the achievements in this role was reorganization, development and implementation of Transportation Service Centers which moved much of the responsibility, accountability, and authority from Lansing and the Districts/Regions to those Centers for a designated local multi-county area.

While at Tech, Tom was a center and linebacker on the football team receiving All America Academic Honors twice. He was born and raised in Ludington Michigan and now resides there spending time tending the family farm and working on planning and improvements for the city.