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October 2, 2016 4:30 PM, EDT

ATA Announces Trucking Champions and President's Award Winners

Kevin Burch, White, Dave Manning by John Sommers II
LAS VEGAS — Wal-Mart’s Charles “Mike” White and FedEx Freight’s Eric Vos, the winners of the National Truck Driving Championships and TMC SuperTech National Technician Skills Competition, respectively, were honored Oct. 2 by American Trucking Associations as part of the annual Management Conference & Exhibition.

White, a Wal-Mart Transportation driver based in Nineveh, Indiana, won the 2016 Bendix National Truck Driving Championships in August in Indianapolis. White, who has been driving trucks for 39 years, succeeded fellow company driver Ronald Emenheiser as the grand champion at the competition.

Vos won his second straight Technology and Maintenance Council SuperTech championship in September in Raleigh, North Carolina. Vos, of Boise, Idaho, has worked with FedEx Freight for 11 years and competed in the SuperTech competition for 10 years. He said after his victory last month that it would be his last appearance.

The ATA National Truck Driver of the Year was also announced: Frank Calvert, who has been a professional truck driver for 60 years, logging more than 5 million miles without a preventable accident. Calvert works for AAA Cooper Transportation in Cullman, Alabama.

“This industry — from top to bottom — is filled with tremendous people worthy of recognition of the hard work and professionalism they exhibit on a daily basis,” ATA President Chris Spear said. “We pause to recognize their accomplishments, but also to honor some very special members of our community, individuals and companies that have gone above and beyond in the pursuit of excellence to earn the title of champion.”

ATA also gave three companies the President’s Award. The small fleet (under 25 million miles) winner was Detroit’s Gorski Bulk Transport. The midsize fleet winner (between 25 million and 100 million miles) was TCW Inc., of Nashville, Tennessee. The large fleet winner with more than 100 million miles was Old Dominion Freight Line of Thomasville, North Carolina.

 

In other announcements, 14 trucking association executives also received awards from the Trucking Association Executives Council for their distinguished service to the industry. The winners have a combined 165 years of experience in the industry:

  • Walt Heinritizi, executive director of the Michigan Trucking Association, 30 years
  • John Hausladen, president of Minnesota Trucking Association, 20 years
  • Myron Rau, president of the South Dakota Trucking Association, 15 years
  • Barry “Spook” Stang, executive vice president of the Motor Carriers of Montana, 15 years
  • Anne Lynch, executive director of the Massachusetts Motor Transportation Association, 15 years
  • Paul Enos, CEO of the Nevada Trucking Association, 10 years
  • John Esparza, president of the Texas Trucking Association, 10 years
  • Aves Thompson, executive director of the Alaska Trucking Association, 10 years
  • Tom Crawford, president and CEO of the Missouri Trucking Association, 10 years
  • Jan Vineyard, president of the West Virginia Trucking Association, 10 years
  • Gary Langston, president and CEO of the Indiana Motor Truck Association;, 5 years
  • Matt Hart, executive director of the Illinois Trucking Association, J5 years
  • Jon Samson, executive director of ATA’s Agricultural and Food Transporters Conference, 5 years
  • Chris Maxwell, president and CEO of the Rhode Island Trucking Association; 5 years

“These leaders have done tremendous work in their states to enhance our industry’s image and advance a pro-trucking, pro-safety, pro-efficiency agenda,” Spear said.

Tom Whitaker, chairman of the TAEC and executive director of the Kansas Motor Carriers Association, and Kendra Hems, TAEC vice chairman and president of the Trucking Association of New York were also recognized for their leadership on the council for this past year.