For the fifth consecutive year, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Hiring Our Heroes Program, FASTPORT and Kenworth are recognizing military veterans transitioning to a civilian career as a professional truck driver. Qualifying finalists will be presented with the “Transition Trucking: Driving for Excellence” award. The grand prize winner receives a new fully-loaded Kenworth T680 valued at $185,000. Without the financial burden of truck payments, the person who places first will then be able to take on the road as a true owner operator.
We are honored to have so many veterans in our driving force, and are proud to have such a phenomenal group to nominate for this award. Each and every one of these drivers is deserving of this award. I’m excited to see what the future holds for our nominees and hope to take one or more of them back to Washington D.C this year!
Stevens Transport Driver Relations Manager
A native of Bellevue, NE, Ray decided early to serve his country before following the footsteps of his parents into the transportation industry. Enlisting in the Army in 1992, he served his 26-year Active Duty career in the most challenging way possible – Infantry. Through his demonstrated tenacity, values, and warrior ethos, Ray was chosen to serve in all key positions of leadership from squad to brigade, up to First Sergeant. His ten assignments and combat tours included Europe, Korea, the Balkans, and the Middle East. After his promotion to Master Sergeant E8 in 2018, Ray retired to pursue a life over the road, as other family members had before him. He earned his CDL from Lone Star Community College and now serves as one of the top OTR drivers for Stevens Transport CD, Inc.
Gail grew up surrounded by the military and longed to follow in her family’s footsteps in the United States Army and Army Reserves. After enlisting in 1989, Gail served her 20-year career in the Transportation and Logistics sector, reaching the rank of Captain O3. Her assignments and combat tours included Iraq for Operations Desert Storm and Iraqi Freedom and Kuwait. After retiring in 2009, Gail obtained her CDL from Premier Truck Driving School in February of 2020. Gail is now delivering loads with Stevens Transport, Inc., and has made huge strides in her career!
Surrounded by the military lifestyle at a young age, David Reardon knew that he was destined to serve. In May of 1992, David enlisted and spent the next 20 years and eight deployments as an Infantry Officer. Upon climbing the ranks to Lieutenant Colonel, David retired in May of 2012. After engaging in other careers, David made the decision to pursue his childhood career as a professional driver, obtained his CDL from Stevens Driving Academy, LP, and is currently one of the top OTR drivers at Stevens Transport, Inc.
Howard signed up to protect his country by joining the United States Air Force in 1986. For the next 22 years, Howard served as an Aerospace Ground Equipment Craftsman and deployed nine times around the world. Howard retired from his post in 2008 in search of a career that with adventure and purpose. He found that in trucking and earned his CDL from New England Tractor Trailer Training Driving School in Bridgeport, CT. He began driving for Stevens Transport, Inc. shortly thereafter, and is currently one of the top OTR drivers in the fleet.
Tylone has always wanted to honor his country in any capacity, a dream realized when he joined the Army in 1998. For the next 12 years and eight months, Tylone served as a Small Arms/Artillery Repairer, supporting military operations in the United States, Iraq, and Afghanistan. After being honorably discharged in 2011, Tylone pursued other careers, but ultimately longed for a career that offered more personal independence and freedom. He found both of those qualities and more in the transportation industry. Shortly after graduating with his CDL from Careers World Wide in Keenesburg, CO, Tylone joined Stevens Transport, Inc., and is now one of the top drivers in the fleet.
The announcement of the Top 10 Finalist will be on September 1, 2020 with the Final 3 will be revealed later in the month. The Final 3 will then undergo a public vote from October 26 – November 11, and will finally travel to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Hall of Flags in Washington, D.C. on December 18 alongside industry professionals, military officials and media outlets to hear the final award announcement.