Women In Trucking Association Honors 169 Female Professional Drivers at the 8th Annual “Salute to Women Behind the Wheel"

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Women In Trucking Association recently held its eighth annual Salute to Women Behind the Wheel to honor female professional drivers. Nearly 400 people attended the event at the Kentucky Exposition Center in conjunction with the Mid-America Trucking Show in Louisville, Kentucky.

The Women In Trucking (WIT) Association’s annual “Salute to Women Behind the Wheel” recently honored 169 female professional drivers at its 8th annual celebration at the Mid-America Trucking Show in Louisville, Kentucky. These women, with nearly 2,700 collective years of driving, were honored for their service as pioneers in the trucking industry. Six women were recognized for driving careers spanning forty years or more! The room at the Kentucky Exposition Center was brimming with these female CDL holders in their red WIT shirts and the nearly 200 friends and family members cheering them on.

Daphne Jefferson, Deputy Administrator of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration addressed the group and thanked them for their role as pioneers. She talked about her ride-along with two female drivers and what she learned from the view of a tractor-trailer window. Ann Dyer, Senior Director, Regional Transportation for Walmart Stores, Inc. gave the keynote address and told about traveling with her mother, a professional driver, when she was a young girl, and the challenges faced by female drivers in the past. Dyer also introduced Carol Nixon, a WIT member of the month, who recently donated a kidney to a fellow driver’s husband.

WIT’s President and CEO Ellen Voie welcomed the group and reviewed the recent accomplishments of the nonprofit organization, including the Girl Scout Transportation Patch, ride-alongs with regulators and elected officials, the WIT app, WIT index, truck stop rating directory, and the group’s work on truck cab design and ergonomics. Other recognition programs include the Distinguished Woman in Logistics, the Influential Woman in Trucking and the recently expanded WIT Image Team. Voie promised to fulfill her dream of providing a female truck driver doll in the near future. A highlight of the event was the announcement by Jim Stevenson, Director of National Accounts for Arrow Truck Sales, who handed Voie the keys to a late model Volvo tractor Arrow is donating to a lucky WIT member who will win the tractor at next year’s Salute to Women Behind the Wheel.

The celebration included music by Jayne Denham, an award winning singer and song writer from Australia. The crowd enjoyed dark and milk chocolate fountains and a huge truck-shaped cake. The female drivers won door prizes including a $500 gift card, and five $100 gift cards. The Women In Trucking Scholarship foundation gave away numerous prizes as well while raising nearly $2,000 in donations from the attendees. The event included the annual group photo of the women in their WIT red t-shirts and ended with the distribution of goodie bags filled with items from the event sponsors.

Walmart Transportation won the driver participation award for having twenty-one of their female professional drivers present at the event.

Next year’s Salute to Women Behind the Wheel will be held March 24th. All female professional drivers are welcome to participate and need not be members of the association.

This year’s sponsors of the event were:

Gold: Walmart Transportation and Arrow Truck Sales
Silver: Bennett International Group, CFI, Inc., J.B. Hunt Transport, Shell Rotella
Bronze: Dart Transit Co., Landstar, Lily Transportation Corp., Ryder System, Inc., and TA-Petro
Copper: Acuity, Averitt Express, J. J. Keller & Associates, Inc., R & R Trucking, Inc., Republic Services
Nickel: EROAD, Inc. Heniff Transportation Systems, Rand McNally, Rollin’ B, Stay Metrics, Truckstop.com

Women In Trucking Association, Inc. is a nonprofit association established to encourage the employment of women in the trucking industry, promote their accomplishments and minimize obstacles faced by women working in the trucking industry. Membership is not limited to women, as 17 percent of its members are men who support the mission. Women In Trucking is supported by its members and the generosity of Gold Level Partners: Arrow Truck Sales, Bendix Commercial Vehicle Systems, Daimler Trucks North America, BMO Transportation Finance, Expediter Services, Great Dane, J.B. Hunt Transport, Ryder System, Inc., U.S. Xpress, and Walmart. Follow WIT on Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn. For more information, visit http://www.womenintrucking.org or call 888-464-9482.

Group photo by Paul Hartley, AddMedia

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