Sibley man new S-O maintenance director

Tyler Plotz looks over a control box for boilers inside Sibley-Ocheyedan High School in Sibley. He is the school district’s new director of maintenance and operations.

SIBLEY—Tyler Plotz’s career path has marched him back home.

The 39-year-old is a Sibley native who has moved back to his hometown and works for the Sibley-Ocheyedan School District as its new director of maintenance and operations.

“There’s a good group of staff here that has really helped with the transition for me to come into here,” Plotz said. “It’s neat to be back. I help coach football here.”

Plotz, who graduated in 1998 from the high school in Sibley, has held his new job position for more than a month. He oversees a department of six full-time employees.

“When stuff breaks around the school, they send help tickets to me,” Plotz said. “I’m kind of a plumber, an electrician, a carpenter and all of that kind of rolled into one.”

He is not new to working in the public sector. After a 21-year career in the U.S. Marine Corps, he retired in March as a master sergeant.

“You wear a lot of different hats growing up in the Marine Corps,” Plotz said. “When I originally joined, I was an aircraft mechanic.

“I’ve done two stints as an instructor before, so teaching the young kids coming into my military occupational specialty how to do my job,” he said.

He also spent about three years as a drill instructor at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot in San Diego.

“I did three years of causing hate and discontent to the new recruits,” Plotz said. “Then I did another stint as an instructor teaching staff sergeants and gunner sergeants in a leadership academy. I’ve kind of done different things along with my regular job of being a mechanic.”

The last job title he held in the Marine Corps before retiring was maintenance chief.

“That’s overseeing the whole maintenance department,” Plotz said. “When I got out, I had 217 people underneath me. I was supervising their daily maintenance.”

During a military career that dated back to February 1998, he was stationed on bases in Okinawa, Japan; Newburgh, NY; Cherry Point, NC; San Diego; and Okinawa again.

Plotz and his wife, Courtney, originally looked at moving to the Iowa Great Lakes area or Sioux Falls, SD, after he retired from the Marine Corps.

His wife, the former Courtney Kastner, graduated in 2000 from Sibley-Ocheyedan High School.

The couple eventually settled on living in Sibley and sending their two children to where they had gone to school as kids.

“We knew we wanted to be closer to family to give our kids the opportunity to kind of grow up with their grandparents,” Plotz said.

“We came back one summer and all of a sudden we started kind of just looking at houses to see what was around here and we found one that we liked,” he said.

He always appreciated the support of his family during his military career, especially with how frequently they had to pack up and move around.

“A big credit goes to them,” Plotz said. “The families also serve to an extent as well.”

After he and his family moved to Sibley, Plotz worked as a mechanic at 59 Power Sports near Sibley.

“They kind of gave me my first shake when I retired,” Plotz said. “I enjoyed my time out there a lot.”

He was not looking to leave 59 Power Sports for another job, but new Sibley-Ocheyedan superintendent James Craig reached out to him about working for the school district.

“I came in and talked to him and, lo and behold, I started working here,” Plotz said. “It’s nice to be back here.”