The plan by Biden-Harris Administration to strengthen the trucking industry includes the U.S....

The plan by Biden-Harris Administration to strengthen the trucking industry includes the U.S. DOT's appointment of members to the Women of Trucking Advisory Board.

File Photo: Gordon Hanson

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) announced in a statement the appointment of members to the Women of Trucking Advisory Board (WOTAB) to recruit, retain, support, and ensure the safety of women commercial motor vehicle (CMV) drivers and strengthen the trucking industry as a whole. 

The Women of Trucking Advisory Board includes 16 founding members, all women, with diverse backgrounds and experiences to provide balanced points of view on addressing the challenges facing women in the industry. Of these members, five are current CMV drivers and four are former CMV drivers, others are trainers, executives and authors. WOTAB’s members hail from 11 states and work for small, medium, and large trucking companies and as independent owner-operators, non-profit organizations, trucking business associations, and institutions of higher education. Collectively, WOTAB members have more than 80 years of driving experience with trucks, motorcoaches, and ports and more than 275 years in trucking and other modes of transportation. 

Women of Trucking Advisory Board (WOTAB) Members

  • Anne Balay, Organizer with the Service Employees International Union (School/Higher Education). 
  • Jerri Banks, Owner of Life on the Road (LOTR) Recruiting and Transportation Services (Driver Recruitment)
  • Elisabeth Barna, Executive Vice President, American Trucking Associations (Trucking Association)
  • Joyce Brenny, Brenny Transportation, Inc. and Brenny Specialized, Inc., Founder and President (Independent Owner and Operator)
  • Enjoli DeGrasse, International Brotherhood of Teamsters, Deputy Director (Labor)
  • Marie Druckenmiller, Amazon, Director of Transportation (Large Carrier)
  • Erin Ducharme, CFO, H&L Bloom/Bloom’s Bus Lines (Motorcoach)
  • Laura Duryea, Boyle Transportation, Manager of Recruiting, Retention, and Driver Development (Medium Carrier)
  • Marquita Jones, J.B. Hunt, Intermodal Driver (Female Driver)
  • Kellylynn McLaughlin, Schneider National Inc., Professional Driver (Female Driver)
  • Dianne McNair-Smith, 3 Girls Trucking Academy, CEO (School/Higher Education)
  • Sharae Moore, Founder/President, SHE Trucking Foundation (Trucking Association)
  • O’Sheauna Parker (Female Driver)
  • Emily Plummer, Prime Inc., Professional Driver (Female Driver)
  • Soledad Munoz Smith, Munoz Trucking (Small Carrier)
  • Nicole Ward, Co-owner, African American Women in Trucking Association (Non-Profit)

WOTAB’s launch is another key initiative mandated by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and is part of the Biden-Harris Trucking Action Plan that is focused on improving job quality and recruiting more people into the truck driving profession.

"America needs truck drivers like never before, yet women — half the American people — have long been underestimated and underrepresented behind the wheel and in jobs across this sector," said U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg in the statement. "Getting to know women in trucking, I have heard about their passion for the job as well as the challenges they face, and this experienced Women in Trucking Advisory Board will help us address these issues directly. We thank the members for serving and look forward to working together to bring more women into trucking and to enhance job quality in this important career.”

Recruiting and supporting women in transportation is a key priority for the Biden-Harris Administration. “Women are significantly underrepresented in the trucking industry, holding only 24% of all transportation jobs,” added FMCSA Deputy Administrator Robin Hutcheson. “We anticipate many great ideas from the advisory board that will help expand equity and safely provide access to careers in trucking for women across the industry.”

In March, Hutcheson discussed truck driver challenges firsthand in a ride along with an experienced driver. 

WOTAB will coordinate with trucking companies, nonprofit organizations, and trucking associations to support women in trucking. The Board will provide recommendations to the FMCSA Administrator and the U.S. Secretary of Transportation, as well as tackle many issues, including:

  • Evaluating barriers and trends that impact women in trucking across the country and ways to support women pursuing careers in trucking.
  • Identifying opportunities to expand roles for women and increase the number of women in the trucking industry.
  • Advising on policies that provide education, training, mentorship, or outreach to women in the trucking industry.
  • Reviewing opportunities to enhance safety, training, mentorship, and education for women in the trucking industry.

Originally posted on Trucking Info

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