Fleet insider

Trucker Buddy of the Month
Howard Salmon hit the ground running when he joined Trucker Buddy as a volunteer in 2005, engaging his class right from the start. “The class immediately responded to him with great enthusiasm and admiration,” says Sonja Padgett, teacher of the second-grade section with which Salmon is matched at Anderson Heights Elementary School in Anderson, Calif. “Every year gets better.”

The above and beyond that earned Salmon the ACS MultiMedia Trucker Buddy Driver of the Month award for January, however, was his additional effort to support the organization through fund-raising.

Early on, Salmon was inspired by his students, and he wrote a Trucker Buddy song for his class. Salmon brings his guitar and sings with the students.

In early 2006, Salmon was moved to share the song with other Trucker Buddy classes and began pursuing options for having the lyrics recorded and the whole burned to CD. To date, he has gotten the music recorded and donated; the next step is to get the lyrics added to the music, and he is seeking sponsors to assist with the cost of having the CDs made. The goal is to have the song available to the public in time for distribution at the Mid-America Trucking Show, March 27-29. Salmon will donate all proceeds from the CDs to Trucker Buddy.

Each Trucker Buddy Driver of the Month receives a personalized jacket, a check for $300 to spend on the class and $200 in Trucker Buddy merchandise, compliments of program sponsor ACS MultiMedia Advertising. They also receive an IdleAire window adapter and a free Gold Membership, a Koolatron cooler and a complete set of Airtabs for their tractor or trailer. The class will receive a CrossCountry USA game from Ingenuity Works, which will help them learn more about how trucks move freight across the continent.

Averitt Honors 20-Year Drivers
Averitt Express recently honored seven drivers for their 20 years of service. The honorees were Willie Cook of Stone Mountain, Ga.; David Fullington of Dickson, Tenn.; Donald Harned of Hopkinsville, Ky.; Charles Lantrip of Cookeville, Tenn.; Bobby Mathis of Somerville, Tenn.; Jeff Oakes of Red Bank, Tenn.; and David Taylor of Oneonta, Ala.

Partner Insights
Information to advance your business from industry suppliers
The ALL NEW Rand Tablet
Presented by Rand McNally

These seven drivers are among more than 300 Averitt associates who are members of the company’s “Over 20 Team,” an exclusive group of associates who have served 20 or more years with Averitt.

CalArk Honors Driver of the Year
At a recent employee appreciation luncheon, CalArk International announced its 2007 Driver of the Year, as well as several other driving awards.

Allen Robertson, who was named CalArk’s 2007 Driver of the Year, was presented with a plaque and a $2,500 bonus. The annual award is based on a number of criteria: most miles driven, no preventable accidents, best fuel mileage, best log average, no moving violations and best on-time delivery.

Robertson, with more than 11 years of OTR experience, previously was named CalArk’s Driver of the Year in 2003 and 2004, and was second runner-up in 2006. Robertson, who lives in Merrillville, Ind., also was named Driver of the Year by the Arkansas Trucking Association in 2002, received CalArk’s award for Best Fuel Mileage in 2004 and is a member of the 2 million mile club.

Other driver awards also were presented at the luncheon: Curt Cline of Little Rock, Ark., was presented the 3 million mile award and received a $5,000 bonus; Horace Hooper of Simms, Texas, received the award for Best Fuel Mileage in 2007; and Joe and Mary Hester received the award for most miles driven in 2007.

Maverick Driver Wins Referral Award
Referring drivers in 2007 paid off in a big way for driver William Cox, as Maverick Transportation recently awarded him as their 2007 Driver Referral Winner of the Year.

Cox, a resident of Woodhaven, Mich., started with the company’s specialized division last August but still managed to surpass other Mavericks in the hunt for the annual award. As winner, he will receive a vacation package valued at $1,700, $500 spending cash and a week of vacation.

Dart Contractors of the Month
Dart Transit Company announced its Contractors of the Month: Marian Loviscek and Nelson Taylor at the Dallas Operating Center and Steve Doggett and Bosa Byantalo at the Eagan Operating Center in Minnesota. Contractors of the Month are recognized for their on-time performance, dependability and safety record.

Loviscek has been in the trucking industry since 1991 and has contracted with Dart for 11 years. Loviscek owns and operates a 2004 Freightliner with a Dart National contract.

Taylor has contracted with Dart for 13 of his 18 years in the trucking industry. Taylor owns and operates a 2001 Freightliner with a Dart National contract. Doggett has contracted with Dart for nearly 20 years. He began driving commercial trucks in 1985, but learned how to drive a truck on his family’s farm 45 years ago. Doggett owns and operates a 2003 Freightliner with a Dart Dedicated contract.

Byantalo has been in the trucking industry since 1988 and has contracted with Dart for 17 years. Byantalo owns and operates a 2004 Freightliner with a Dart National contract.

Dart Contractors of the Month receive certificates and gifts from Dart’s “Pro Shop.”