Executive profile: For Public Works leader, building a career has meant building a city
In one moment, as a kid, Mark Cotter made a choice that led to a career.
One of his five siblings brought home a book of college majors, and as a young Cotter flipped through it, he made an instant decision.
“It said roads, bridges, pipelines,” he said. “And I told my sister, ‘That’s exactly what I want to do.’ And I went into civil engineering. It was honestly that simple. I went to college and never looked back.”
Growing up on a farm outside Chester, S.D., he had been inspired by what he saw happening around him.
“When you grow up in the country, you’re watching your neighbors work the fields, combine, harvest and you’re around a lot of large equipment. And I was drawn to it and wanted to find a way to still be in it,” he said.