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February 18, 2016 4:01 PM, EST
ATA Opens Driver Nomination Process for America’s Road Team
Danny Smith by John Sommers II for Transport Topics

American Trucking Associations has opened the nominating process for professional truck drivers to serve on the 2017-2018 America’s Road Team, sponsored by Volvo Trucks.

ATA said it formed America’s Road Team in 1986 to give an authentic voice to the millions of professional truck drivers who operate safely and efficiently throughout North America.

“Being selected as part of America’s Road Team means joining a group that represents the trucking industry as its greatest ambassadors,” ATA CEO Bill Graves said in a statement. “These elite professional drivers lend a voice to trucking professionals from all segments of the industry and help make trucking a safer, more productive and more respected industry.”

ATA said every two years the torch is passed to a new group of drivers, while America’s Road Team Captains from previous classes remain very active within the program — serving as mentors and attending events alongside the newest class.

The selected professional drivers, most of whom have millions of accident-free miles, take a few days away from their companies each month to meet with the motoring public, the news media, students, transportation officials and public policymakers to perform truck safety demonstrations and explain the sustainable role that trucking plays in the nation’s economy, ATA said.

“America's Road Team Captains provide a remarkable service as industry ambassadors to help further our important issues of essentiality, safety and sustainability,” said Göran Nyberg, president of Volvo Trucks North America sales and marketing. “They are elite professional drivers and elite educators, and we're eager to work with the men and women who will serve as the face of the trucking industry in 2017-2018 as America's Road Team Captains.”

In addition, the chosen captains make appearances at events ranging from the National Conference of State Legislators to major industry conferences to local driver safety meetings to emphasize the importance of safety and professionalism and the need to diligently portray the industry in a positive light, ATA said.

“Professional truck drivers, like me, are proud of the work we do each day to provide our nation with everything it needs in a safe and efficient way,” said America’s Road Team Captain Danny Smith of Big G Express Inc., a member of the 2015-2016 class. “It’s an honor to serve alongside the men and women who are passionate about trucking and committed to improving the way the public views our industry.”

ATA said to nominate a professional truck driver, carefully read the eligibility requirements and fill out the nomination form found at www.americasroadteam.com.

Nominations are due Aug. 22. Finalists will be announced Oct. 22, with the final selection taking place in January 2017.