Accomplished R&M Leaders Retire After More than Four Decades with the Firm
January 28, 2019
After four decades at R&M, Senior Vice President of Earth Sciences Charlie Riddle, CPG and Group Manager of Structural Engineering Duane Anderson, PE have retired.
“Congratulations to both Charlie and Duane on their well-deserved retirement! After these many years of working together, we will all need to adjust to the idea that they will no longer be at the office,” said R&M’s Chief Executive Officer Len Story, PLS. “I have thoroughly enjoyed our association and friendship. We will continue to benefit from their personal wisdom, professionalism and attention to detail. As two of our most faithful employees who have shaped R&M into what it is today, thank you for all that you have done for our State, community and R&M. You will be greatly missed.”
Charlie and Duane joined R&M in its infancy – Charlie in 1974 as a field geologist assigned to work on the Trans-Alaska Pipeline (TAPS) and Duane as a Structural Engineer in 1975, working on the Gulkana River Pipeline Bridge for TAPS. They have been with the firm during the majority of their careers, working on projects throughout Alaska that have made a significant difference in the lives of the people that live here. They have also made a significant impact on the firm’s growth, helping shape R&M into the largest Alaskan consulting firm in the State.
Charlie became Director of R&M’s Earth Sciences Department in 1992, taking over management and responsibility for the department’s growth and direction. Over his career, Charlie has worked on numerous geotechnical and interdisciplinary investigations, including foundation analysis, large-scale grading, rock mechanics and slope stability, hydroelectric site studies, tunnel investigations, quarry and material site investigations, geologic and bedrock structure mapping, groundwater monitoring, and siting of roads, pipelines and utility corridors. His notable projects include the U.S. Navy Over the Horizon Radar Facility in Amchitka, numerous projects in support of TAPS, multiple versions of the proposed gas pipeline, the Susitna Dam Project and Bradley Lake Hydroelectric Project.
“I’ve been fortunate to enjoy a good blend of both field and office work. I would go out in the field on a project and then spend time in the office working on the same project.” said Charlie. “Because of this, I was able to visit and work in all regions of Alaska. I’ve visited hundreds of towns and villages throughout the state.”
Over his lengthy career, Duane has designed numerous facilities valued in excess of $75 million. His experience has been varied and diverse, but has largely been focused on waterfront, bridge, military, utility and school projects throughout Alaska. Duane became Group Manager of Structural Engineering in 1993, where he has been responsible for building the firm’s structural business line. In 2016, Duane was recognized as a Fellow with the American Society of Civil Engineers and was nominated for Engineer of the Year that same year. He has worked on numerous projects throughout the years, most notably the Kodiak Ferry Terminal and Dock Improvements, Kotzebue Shore Avenue, Port of Alaska Engineering Services Term Contract, Elmendorf Airforce Base F22 Weather Shelter, U.S. Navy Submarine Acoustic Measurement Facility and Thompson Pass Highline Design for TAPS.
“Over the course of my life with R&M, although there were a few dull moments, I have been able to work on a lot of interesting projects,” said Duane. “Not necessarily in respect of size or number of stories, but mostly in solving logistical issues and finding solutions that work in remote areas of the State.”
Charlie’s plans for the future include dividing his time between Anchorage and his family farm in the Carolinas. In the meantime, he plans to finish cleaning out his office.
“I’ve had a lot of fun during my time at R&M,” said Charlie. “Over the years, staff has changed, people have come and gone, but I’ve always worked with excellent people. R&M seems to attract really good people and it’s been an honor to work with such good people. And that’s not just good people professionally, that’s just plain good people.”
Duane’s next steps are to have more fun and stay fit enough to enjoy the “golden” years. He plans to stay in Alaska for the near future with breaks to visit Australia and travel to Asia for supreme scuba diving, as well as spend more time sailing, snow biking and skiing.
“My time at R&M has been very interesting. The transition of the firm from limited ownership to more diverse employee-ownership with an active board of directors was a major turning point,” said Duane. “We almost immediately experienced a quality growth pattern with lots of staff participation. Since then, R&M has achieved much recognition by Engineering News Record and other professional organizations as a ‘Best Firm to Work For.’ I’m glad I had the opportunity to be a part of this growth and change and see R&M develop into the firm it is today.”