Gary Thomas graduated from Colorado State University in 1974 and joined Ketchum, Konkel, Barrett, Nickel, Austin (KKBNA), Martin/Martin’s predecessor firm identity. In 1985 Gary was promoted to Principal, midst the severe economic recession in the 1980s, and just prior to the acquisition of KKBNA assets by the Martin Organization in 1988. Two years later, Gary was named Civil Department Manager; a position in which he would proudly serve for 21 years. On April 1, 1990, Gary was elected to Martin/Martin’s Board of Directors. The apogee of his upward career path took place in 2006, when he was named Martin/Martin’s first local President, after taking over the position of President from John “Trailer” Martin. Gary has participated in a leadership role for a significant portion of Martin/Martin’s 32-year existence, influencing the company, its direction, and ultimately its success.
Gary completed thousands of projects including the design and project management of several large and successful land developments such as: Southshore of Aurora, CityCenter Englewood, and Westminster Promenade. Gary considers the Church Ranch Corporate Center to be one of his favorite projects and most successful. He recollects the tight budget and quick time-frame of the project, as well as the lasting relationships, with those involved, after it was completed. His focus shifted, in the last ten years of his career, working with members of the investigative team, concentrating on Expert Witness work.
During his career with Martin/Martin, Gary maintained many professional roles, as well as a few that never made it to his business card. When asked to list his extra responsibilities accumulated over his career, he wrote: “HR manager, property manager, real estate negotiator, corporate manager, quality control manager, company event’s sponsor, career counselor, financial manager, risk manager, corporate legal liaison, litigation manager/liaison, and marketing/public relation liaison.”
Jack Petersen, current Martin/Martin President, when asked about Gary wrote: “Gary has been an integral part of Martin/Martin’s success over the last 32 years, building on his contributions to KKBNA in prior years. Gary’s commitment to engineering excellence, ethics and professionalism has been realized in the generations he has mentored. Gary provided a steady hand in business planning as a member of the company Board of Directors for over 30 years.”
Matthew Schlageter, Principal and current Civil Department Manager wrote: “I have greatly enjoyed working with Gary over the years and he has been a valuable resource not only to our company, but also the industry and we celebrate with him in this new phase of his career. Our relationship is not ending, simply transitioning to the next chapter as he begins to enjoy some added free-time and travel opportunities.”
Gary will continue to work with Martin/Martin on a contract basis, reducing his workload the further he moves past his retirement date of July 24, 2020. An open house and celebration of Gary’s career will be planned in the future, once social restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic have been lifted. Please join us as we congratulate Gary on the completion of a successful engineering career, and the shift to new and exciting adventures.