Repairing the trucking industry’s image is critical to its future success, said Shepard Dunn, president of Vincennes, Ind.-based Bestway Express and 2014-2015 chairman of the Truckload Carriers Association, during a luncheon address at the 2014 CCJ Spring Symposium in Nashville, Tenn.
“We are a collection of personal stories that represent the best of America, and we truly do move America forward,” said Dunn. “We will succeed only when we cooperate and align our goals,” he added, noting that the American Trucking Associations and TCA have common ground in education, image, policy and advocacy initiatives and the two organizations will align on those efforts when possible.
During his tenure as TCA chairman, Dunn says he plans to continue to improve the many image campaigns the association already has established, including Wreaths Across America, the Highway Angel program and the Allied Committee for the Trucking Industry-initiated Trucking Moves America Forward program, and asked attendees to invest their time and resources. “I encourage each of you to get involved,” said Dunn. “When you do you, I guarantee you will be happy you did. My platform is keep doing the things we already do. We have so many programs it is hard to be excellent in all of them, but that is exactly what we are going to try to do.”
Dunn said he also plans to grow TCA’s benchmarking program and establish a “Fittest Fleet” program during his tenure, building on the health and wellness initiative first introduced by past TCA chairman Robert Low.
Dunn also outlined several challenges facing the industry, including lack of driver respect at shipper facilities, lost productivity due to the new hours-of-service rules, electronic logging device adoption and the lack of highway infrastructure funding. “If we face those challenges and adapt as needed, we will continue to thrive as an industry,” said Dunn.