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Otter Tail County's Rick West earns transportation advocacy award

West was honored with the Minnesota Transportation Alliance's Transportation Advocate Award. The award is given to an individual who is devoted to improving transportation in Minnesota and shows willingness to be a strong advocate for transportation.

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Rick West, holding his award, with Otter Tail County Commissioners Kurt Mortenson, Lee Rogness, Dan Bucholz, Wayne Johnson and Betty Murphy (left to right) on Nov. 9, 2021. (Contributed / Otter Tail County / Perham Focus)

Rick West, retired Otter Tail County Public Works Director, has won an award for his outstanding work in the county.

On Nov. 3 at the Minnesota Transportation Alliance’s annual meeting, West was honored with the Transportation Advocate Award. The award is given to an individual who is devoted to improving transportation in Minnesota and shows willingness to be a strong advocate for transportation.

“Rick went above and beyond to communicate with local elected officials, state legislators and members of Congress about the importance of adequately funding roads and bridges in Minnesota,” said Margaret Donahoe, executive director of the transportation alliance, in a news release. “The members of the transportation alliance are pleased to honor Rick, and thank him for his years of advocacy and his efforts to make our transportation system safer and more effective.”

West was recognized with the award at the Nov. 9 Otter Tail County Board meeting. Commissioners thanked West for his work and congratulated him on the honor.

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“We are honored by your representation of Otter Tail County and the many awards you have earned,” said Lee Rogness, board chair. “We appreciate being able to share this with you.”

West is Otter Tail County’s longest serving county engineer. He retired in June of 2021 after serving the public for over 30 years. He dedicated his career to planning, sustaining, and improving the infrastructure in Otter Tail County.

“It is a great honor to receive this award. Over my long career, I had a lot of help,” West told the commissioners. “I have learned that collaboration will get you to your goals and big projects get accomplished.”

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