Larry Raddatz Receives Workforce Development Award

Director in DCTC Customized Training division honored by Dakota-Scott Workforce Investment Board

Larry Raddatz | DCTC Director of Railroad, Manufacturing and Technical Training

Larry Raddatz, the director of railroad, manufacturing and technical training in the Customized Training division at Dakota County Technical College, received the Mark McAfee Friend of Workforce Development Award at the Dakota-Scott Workforce Investment Board’s annual legislative and awards event held Dec. 17, 2010, at the Burnsville Performing Arts Center in Burnsville, Minn. The award recognizes individuals who have championed workforce issues and initiatives at the local, state or federal level.

Ronald E. Thomas, Ph.D., the president of DCTC, remarked that Raddatz has a broad range of interests that keep him in touch with the community, including racing in triathlons (See “CT Director Excels at U.S. Open Triathlon”). “Larry brings a lot of knowledge to the table,” Thomas said. “His professionalism and dedication are unmatched. In good times and bad, Larry is the person you want on your team. He gets the job done.”

LaDonna Boyd, WIB member and Dakota Electric economic development director, presented the award. “Larry is a very low-key and unassuming individual, but in the spirit of this award—has done so much to help better people’s lives with his quiet determination and leadership,” Boyd said.

In the early 1980s, Raddatz was a WorkForce Center client. He appreciated the services and opportunities the center provided. As a CT director at DCTC, Raddatz enjoys daily opportunities to help job seekers gain the high-demand skills needed to pursue new and successful careers in a challenging economy.

(left to right) LaDonna Boyd, Larry Raddatz, Betsy McAfee, Mark McAfee's wife of 30 years

Raddatz’s professional duties center on improving employee skill levels by connecting employer training needs to the most appropriate and innovative classes—classes that are frequently customized to meet specific company demands. He was instrumental in developing a leading-edge soldering program in conjunction with Dakota-Scott Workforce Services. The program has produced a superb track record for getting individuals retrained and back to work. Raddatz also provides career-related counseling at area schools and churches.

DCTC Vice President Sharon LaComb has known Larry Raddatz since he came to work for DCTC in October of 1993 . She admires Raddatz’s ability to connect with business and industry leaders, finding and coordinating training opportunities that not only make sense for the employer, but also enhance the professional development of individual employees. “Larry and Pat McQuillan, our CT director of trade and industry, are a great team,” LaComb said. “Together, they have started at least nine customized programs that went on to become full academic programs at the college. Larry and Pat understand CT, which is a crucial tool in the super-competitive world of business. Larry’s award is a great honor for the college.”

For his part, Raddatz was humbled by the award, noting that his work would not be possible without the help of his colleagues and the organizations geared to supporting economic prosperity through gainful employment. “The success of our Biomedical Equipment Technology, Mechatronics, Railroad Conductor Technology and Soldering Technology programs are due in part to the support of the WorkForce Centers,” he said. “These training programs give clients the skills and credentials to succeed in family-supporting careers. Just as important, they provide area employers with a skilled and reliable workforce.”

The award was renamed in honor of Mark McAfee, a former member of the WorkForce Investment Board. McAfee passed away unexpectedly at age 57 in May 2010. The award was previously known as the Friend of the Workforce Development Award.

Previous recipients of the Friend of Workforce Development Award include:
  • Dakota County Commissioner Will Branning
  • Dakota County Commissioner Tom Egan
  • U.S. Representative John Kline
  • State Representative Katie Sieben
  • State Representative Denny McNamara
  • Scott County Commissioner Bob Vogel
  • Burnsville Mayor Elizabeth Kautz
  • Inver Hills Community College President Cheryl Frank
  • Apple Valley Mayor Mary Hamann-Roland

The Dakota-Scott Workforce Investment Board oversees employment programs and WorkForce Centers in Dakota and Scott counties.

For more information the WIB, contact:
  • Mark Jacobs | Dakota-Scott WIB Director | 651-554-5622
For more information about DCTC Customized Training, contact:
  • William Roberts | CT Director of Transportation | 651-423-8223
  • Richard Hawkins | CT Director of Corporate Transportation | 651-423-8765
  • Patrick McQuillan | CT Director of Trade & Industry | 651-423-8318
  • Larry Raddatz | CT Director of Railroad, Manufacturing and Technical Training | 651-423-8276
  • Tom Glader | CT Director of Computer Technology | 651-688-1183
  • Bradd Strelow | CT Director of Technology/Innovation | 651-688-1187
  • Scott Ashby | CT Director of Sales | 651-688-1182