Truckload Carriers Association and Randall-Reilly Announce 2013 Driver of the Year Finalists

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Top three owner operators and top three company drivers will now compete for grand prize.

Whoever wins will serve the industry well as an example of safety, professionalism, and service.

The Truckload Carriers Association (TCA) and Randall-Reilly have narrowed down the applications for the 2013 Driver of the Year competition to just six. The following three owner operator and company driver finalists will now compete for the prestigious grand prize in their respective categories:

Owner Operator of the Year contest finalists:

  • Thomas Miller of Bunker Hill, Illinois, who is leased to Prime Inc., of Springfield, Missouri.
  • Bryan Smith of Asbury, Iowa, who is leased to Art Pape Transfer, Inc. of Dubuque, Iowa.
  • Terrance Smith of Miramichi, New Brunswick, Canada, who is leased to SLH Transport of Kingston, Ontario, Canada.

Company Driver of the Year contest finalists:

  • Reuben Dupsky of Fremont, Nebraska, who drives for Fremont Contract Carriers, Inc., also of Fremont, Nebraska.
  • Jack Fielding of McKellar, Ontario, Canada, who drives for Bison Transport of Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.
  • Allan Raffay of Hawley, Pennsylvania, who drives for Prime Inc., of Springfield, Missouri.

“It is always such a privilege to be able to work with professional drivers of this caliber,” said Tom Kretsinger, Jr., president of American Central Transport, Inc., Liberty, Missouri, and TCA’s chairman. “I wish we could give every one of them the title of ‘Driver of the Year.’”

TCA’s Driver of the Year competition recognizes and pays tribute to the outstanding company and owner operator truck drivers who provide reliable and safe truck transportation in moving the nation's goods. The finalists and subsequent grand prizewinners are selected based on their ability to operate in a safe manner on the public highways, efforts to enhance the public image of the trucking industry, and positive contributions to the communities in which they live.

To be eligible for the contests, driver applicants had to meet certain minimum criteria, such as having driven one million consecutive, accident-free miles. Trucking companies were limited to nominating only five drivers for each contest. Previous grand prizewinners were not eligible to enter either contest again.

Driver applicants were evaluated based on operating information, work history, and safety record. Each also submitted a 300-word essay explaining why he/she is a good “trucking citizen” and should be a candidate for the grand prize. Equipment specifications, business plans, and financial statements were also reviewed for the owner-operator candidates.

“We always take pride in highlighting the nation's successful owner-operators and drivers in our publication, Overdrive,” said Brad Holthaus, executive associate producer for Randall-Reilly of Tuscaloosa, Alabama. “These finalists are clearly six of the best. I know whoever wins will serve the industry well as an example of safety, professionalism, and service."

The names of the grand prizewinners will be announced at TCA’s Annual Convention, to be held March 23-26, 2014, at the Gaylord Texan in Grapevine, Texas. For further information on the Driver of the Year competition, please visit

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TCA is the only national trade association whose collective sole focus is the truckload segment of the motor carrier industry. The association represents dry van, refrigerated, flatbed, and intermodal container carriers operating in the 48 contiguous states as well as Alaska, Mexico, and Canada. Representing operators of more than 200,000 trucks, which collectively produce annual revenue of more than $20 billion, TCA is an organization tailored to specific truckload carrier needs.

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Michael Nellenbach
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