Brookings register | City Engineer Lanning leaves after 30 years
BROOKINGS – Jackie Lanning will retire as an engineer from the Town of Brookings on June 18, after more than 30 years of service and many milestones.
“People can definitely stop by (at the city engineer’s office) my last week here, if they want to say hello, and I can definitely visit people throughout the week,” Lanning said.
She has no specific plans except to relax this summer, celebrate her 30th wedding anniversary with husband Tony, and weigh her options for the future.
” I can not wait to be there. It will be really great to have some free time just to relax and not… rush back to my job, ”said Lanning.
Work his way
Lanning grew up on a farm near Utica and attended schools in Yankton. She graduated from the Colorado School of Mines in Golden, Colorado, with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering and a minor in environmental science.
“I graduated in December, so it was a mid-year graduation ceremony, and jobs were pretty slim at that time,” Lanning said.
She loved working for municipalities – she interned for the town of Yankton and the town of Littleton, Colorado – so when a technician engineer position opened up in Marshall, Minnesota, she took it. has accepted.
“Marshall seemed like a good candidate,” Lanning said. “Being full time at Marshall, (I) gained a lot of experience in the construction industry. “
“I was there about a year and a half and then I came to the town of Brookings,” she said.
She began as an Assistant City Engineer for Brookings on October 1, 1990 and held this position until October 2003.
“Then I was promoted to acting municipal engineer,” Lanning said.
In April 2004, she was promoted to the post of municipal engineer, which she has held ever since.
“Seventeen years as a city engineer,” Lanning said. “Time flies.”
“It has been an honor and a privilege for me to be the third municipal engineer and the first female municipal engineer for the town of Brookings,” she said.
“We went through a lot of different types of projects that (I was) really happy to be on,” Lanning said.
“Our airport project has had a pretty lengthy process,” Lanning said, starting with the airport master plan in 2004, a two-track environmental assessment, and the council choosing an alternative on-site reconstruction.
“Then we finished the whole track reconstruction, so it was really fun to be involved in a process where you go from concept of design to construction, to public input and environmental assessment and then finally on completion; so that was really exciting, ”Lanning said.
Some of the other projects she worked on included many changes to drainage plans and detention facilities.
The adoption of a master drainage plan has impacted several projects over the past 15 years or so, she added.
“Being involved in a number of our very large street projects has been truly rewarding. One of the first projects I worked on was the Downtown Cityscape Project, which was really unique and involved a lot of coordination with landowners and utilities and then only underground facilities unknown to the time. So it was really a great project, ”said Lanning.
The 22nd Avenue project was another favorite.
“We were able to widen the roads and install new utilities and a shared use path for the public. So these are some of the really big projects, ”Lanning said.
She will leave behind a project.
“The most stimulating and rewarding project has been the project manager on 20th Street South (interchange),” said Lanning. “It was a great learning opportunity and gave me the chance to work with a dedicated team of engineers and professionals who are committed to a common goal. There are a lot of people who have worked extremely hard over the past year and the project is approaching the tendering phase.
Lanning has seen several projects recognized:
• Southland Lane Detention Pond: National Recognition Award from the American Council of Engineering Companies 2011;
• Brookings Track Realignment Project: National Asphalt Pavement Association Construction Quality Award, 2014;
• 22nd Avenue Reconstruction Project: Gold Project Award in Excellence in Concrete Pavement from the American Concrete Pavement Association, 2020.
Lanning received a Professional Engineering (PE) bachelor’s degree and completed the Brookings Leadership program in 1994. She was a member of the American Public Works Association from 1991 to present, state section president in 2018 and 2019 , and held section officer positions.
Lanning was a member of the National Society of Professional Engineers from 1997 to the present, president of the state section from 2005 to 2006, and has served in several section and committee officer positions.
She won the 1998 Young Engineer of the Year award from the South Dakota Engineering Society. She was a member of the South Dakota Department of Environment and Natural Resources Water and Natural Resources Council from 2011 to present. A member of Brookings Rotary since 2005, Lanning has been active in the community as a speaker.
Why the retirement?
“I’ve been in the city for over 30 years and I can’t wait to explore different career opportunities,” Lanning said.
“I plan on taking the rest of the summer and spending time with family and traveling, and a few projects around the house,” she said.
She and her husband Tony, who is a Title 1 reading teacher at Camelot Middle School, are planning to take a road trip, but have yet to decide where they will go. His daughter Sarah is an account manager in Chicago; her son Conor is a care coordinator in Marshall, Minnesota, and her daughter-in-law, Brianna, is a kindergarten teacher.
“We will stay at Brookings,” and Tony will be back in teaching in the fall, Lanning confirmed. By then, she hopes she has a clearer idea of what she wants to do.
“I’m really open to looking at my options and really trying to take the time to regroup over the summer, relax and decide what I want my next steps to be,” Lanning said.
“I really want to thank the public and all the people, the citizens that I have come to know over the years and who have really made my job rewarding,” said Lanning. “I enjoyed working with the public on all the many projects that we have had.
Contact Jodelle Greiner at [email protected]