UPHS – Marquette Heroes: Bryan Carlson

After moving to the UP six years ago, Bryan Carlson found himself serving the area in various roles as a driver. He worked for the county plowing runways and running heavy equipment before lowing the highways for the Marquette County Road Commission. Eventually, he served the Marquette School System as he transported students around. 

So it was only natural he would be intrigued at becoming the shuttle driver for UPHS – Marquette when the new facility opened in June. Now, he spends his days bringing employees back and forth from the old hospital to the new one on a daily basis, taking the same route throughout his shift.  

“The people I move back and forth are all wonderful people,” he said. “Easy to get along with and I have small conversations with pretty much all of them. It’s very enjoyable and makes me feel good. I try to keep a clean bus and get to enjoy the people that are employed here.” 

How did you end up with this position? I actually heard about it through my daughter and online, and I am lucky to have found it. 

What kind of upkeep is necessary on the bus?

Just have to try to keep it clean. I scrub the floor every morning before we start our day, and by the second or third round, you’d never know it. So, I sweep it out probably two or three times a day and then scrub it again in the morning. The hardest part is just keeping everything clean. 

Is it difficult to drive through the winter weather?

It’s not too bad. The city takes pretty good care of seventh street, which is a very busy street, surprisingly. They’re pretty on top of things such as sanding the hills, and it works out pretty good. 

What are some of your keys for when you’re searching out potential riders who are waiting for the bus?

I try to keep a pretty regular schedule. I have the “last-chance glance,” which is when I pull around from the front of the hospital and I always kind of stop and slow down and look back to make sure that no one is running out of the door at the last minute. That’s the last-chance glance. What happens is sometimes people get tied up when they’re coming out. Someone stops them and asks them a question and it’s hard for them to get there right on schedule. 

What are some of your interests outside of work?

Cross country skiing and my family. We also bought a house that was built in 1895 and remodeled it. That took up a lot of my time, but I enjoyed it. 

What is something people may not know about you?

A lot of my life was spent in sales and management. I can relate to a lot of things. I’m also a private pilot. Right now I’m not current, but someday I would like to get back into it again. I flew Ultralights quite a bit; it was a big part of my life when I was younger. 

What is your favorite part about working at UPHS?

The best part is the people. I really enjoy working with them. I’m proud that people nominated me for this. I really appreciate that.

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