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Applicants are being sought to serve two-year terms on the new Women of Trucking Advisory Board of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to promote the role of women in trucking careers.
The WOTAB was chartered Feb. 11 by Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg to eliminate barriers to women entering trucking careers and staying in the trucking profession.
Women are significantly underrepresented in the industry and hold only 24% of all transportation jobs, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation.
Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg (CES via YouTube)
“This advisory board is a key part of our Trucking Action Plan, which is focused on improving job quality for truckers and recruiting more people to join their ranks,” Buttigieg stated in a March 17 press release.
The WOTAB will help support women pursuing trucking careers by expanding scholarship opportunities. It also will review and report on policies that provide education, training, mentorship and outreach to women in the trucking industry. The goal in President Joe Biden’s administration is to recruit, retain and advance the role of women in trucking.
Establishing the WOTAB “furthers our commitment to collaboration, equity and safety across the trucking industry by evaluating existing and potential opportunities for women throughout the trucking industry,” FMCSA acting Administrator Robin Hutcheson said.
The deadline to apply or nominate someone for the advisory board is April 8. A resume of relevant work experience and letter of interest must be submitted that specifies one of the following membership categories:
• Large trucking company (over 100 power units)
• Midsize trucking company (11 to 100 power units)
• Small trucking company (1 to 10 power units)
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• Nonprofit trucking industry organization
• Trucking business association
• Independent owner-operator
• Female professional truck driver
• Institution of higher education or trucking trade school
• Other related role within the trucking industry
A letter of recommendation also is needed from someone who knows the applicant/nominee and has firsthand knowledge of a potential board member’s professional accomplishments.
WOTAB will consist of eight members who serve without pay. They are to have backgrounds, experience and certifications allowing them to contribute balanced viewpoints and diverse ideas on how to coordinate the functions of trucking companies, nonprofits and trucking associations. Questions can be sent to WOTAB@dot.gov.
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The launch of the WOTAB is mandated by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and part of the Biden-Harris Trucking Action Plan.
The White House issued a fact sheet Dec. 16 on the “Trucking Action Plan to Strengthen America’s Trucking Workforce.” It called for a series of actions within 90 days that included having the DOT and Department of Labor launch a task force dedicated to promoting the recruitment, inclusion and advancement of women in trucking “as the first of many strategies to help build the pipeline and diversify the trucking workforce.”
On March 7, Buttigieg and Secretary of Labor Marty Walsh announced the signing of a memorandum of understanding to promote creating good infrastructure and transportation jobs that will focus on equitable workforce development using funds from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.
“Partnering with the Department of Transportation will enable us to make the most of this historic investment in America and its workers by ensuring these investments lead to good jobs and that workers have the training they need to access these jobs, especially women, people of color and workers in communities who for too long have been left behind,” Walsh said.