Top Contenders Named for TCA/Randall-Reilly Driver of the Year Competition

March 1, 2012

The Truckload Carriers Association (TCA) and Randall-Reilly Business Media & Information Company (Randall-Reilly) are pleased to announce the names of the top three company driver and owner operator contenders in the 2011 Driver of the Year competition. Competing in the Owner Operator contest will be Kirby Killgore of O & S Trucking, Inc., Springfield, Mo.; Larry Severson of Dart Transit Company, Eagan, Minn.; and Bryan Smith of Art Pape Transfer, Inc., Dubuque, Iowa. For the Company Driver contest, the contenders will be James Coles of MacKinnon Transport, Inc., Guelph, Ontario; John Moeller of Roehl Transport, Inc., Marshfield, Wisc.; and Ronald Round of Pottle’s Transportation, Inc., Bangor, Maine.

The grand prizewinners for each contest will be announced at TCA’s Annual Convention, to be held March 4-7, 2012, at the Gaylord Palms in Kissimmee, Fla.

“We are excited about partnering with TCA on this important program and are pleased to be able to honor these exemplary truckers in the pages of Overdrive and Truckers News,” says Jeff Mason, Randall-Reilly senior vice president, trucking. “And thanks to the generosity of our sponsors—Cummins and Dodge—each winner will receive a Cummins-powered Dodge pickup truck.”

Screen shot 2012-02-27 at 1.49.29 PM

The overall goal of the Driver of the Year competition is to recognize and pay tribute to the outstanding company and owner operator truck drivers who provide reliable and safe truck transportation in moving the nation’s goods. The top three in each category 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.

The contest judges examined each applicant’s operating information, work history, and safety record. They also evaluated each applicant’s 300-word essays explaining why he/she is a good “trucking citizen” and should be a candidate for the grand prize. For the owner operators, the judges reviewed equipment specifications, business plans, and financial statements as well.

TCA Chairman Gary Salisbury, president and CEO of Fikes Truck Line, Inc., of Hope, Ark., said, “From my own experience as a driver, I can testify to how much work each of these dedicated individuals went through to get to this moment in their careers. I will be honored to shake each of their hands in Kissimmee!”

As the 2011 program moves toward its conclusion, the 2012 competition is already underway.  Two months ago, TCA and Randall-Reilly named the top eight company drivers and top 11 owner operators in the 2012 contests.  The next step will be profiles of each finalist appearing in issues of Truckers News (for the company driver contest) and Overdrive (for the owner operator contest) next year.  The top three in both categories will be named before the end of 2012 and the grand prizewinners will be recognized at TCA’s 2013 Annual Convention in Las Vegas, Nevada.

For further information on the Driver of the Year competition, please visit www.truckload.org/Driver-of-the-Year.