The Official Magazine of Nebraska Trucking Association
Joe Mark Issue 2, 2017 - Nebraska Trucker 1
J. Mark Transportation
THE HIGH COST OF
TROOPER IN A TRUCK
INLAND TRUCK PARTS
Volume 79 Number 2 | 2017 | $3.95 Value
2 Nebraska Trucker - Issue 2, 2017 nebtrucking.com
VOLUME 79, NUMBER 2 • 2017
On the Cover:
A PASSION FOR TRUCKING 14
Marian and Joe Mark with
J. Mark Transportation
BY STEVE BRAWNER
TROOPER IN A TRUCK 13
BY SHEILA O’CONNOR
PARKING, ROADS: 7
IS IT ONE OR THE OTHER
Urban and Regional Parking
Dilemma and Strategies to Overcome
and How It Applies to Trucking
BY STEVE BRAWNER
NTA HOLIDAY PARTY 20
BY SHEILA O’CONNOR
SPRING CONFERENCE 21
BY SHEILA O’CONNOR
Driver of the Month 24
Alpha Mail Carrier
BY SHEILA O’CONNOR
Member Spotlight: 26
INLAND TRUCK PARTS
BY RENEE MILLER
DEPARTMENTS IMAGE ON COVER OF JOE MARK AND
IMAGE THIS PAGE OF MARIAN AND
From the President: Larry Johnson.....................................4 JOE MARK BY THOMAS GRADY.
From the Chairman: Bob Winter .........................................5
NTA New Members.............................................................22 Issue 2, 2017 - Nebraska Trucker 3
Along the Route....................................................................23
Advertiser Resource Index................................................25
Calendar of Events...............................................................25
Greetings Trucking Family and Nebraska Trucking Executive Committee
Friends from Lincoln!
CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARD
I hope everyone is as happy about Spring being upon us as CHAIR-ELECT
I am. While we’ve had a mild winter across Nebraska again, it’s MARY DAVIE
nice to see the bright Spring flowers and tree blossoming—it is Flatbed Express
exciting to hear, smell and see the start of a new growing year.
Speaking of things sprouting and new growth occurring, I SCOTT ROMANS
would like to report that we are continuing to see a new level of Romans Motor Freight
excitement and growth happening within the Association.
I recently reviewed several areas of the Association that I would like to make note of and CRYSTAL ANDERSON
have you join me in congratulating our Vice President and overseer of communications for Pitney Bowes Presort
their growth and success. While it always takes a top team of staff members and association
volunteers to put together successful meetings and events, if we don’t communicate with our SECRETARY
members the value of what they will receive by coming to an event or reading our magazine BRENT FALGIONE
or newsletters, it is all for naught. After recently attending one of our monthly Safety Manage- Greater Omaha Express LLC
ment Council meetings, I was pleasantly surprised that every one of the 75 seats in the room
was full and we had to bring out a few more chairs at the last minute to get everyone a spot. AT-LARGE DIRECTOR
When I look back on this program year from our Fall Management Conference, Holiday Party TIM ASCHOFF
and Fund Raiser, Safety Management Council meetings to other events like the Nebraska
Truck Driving Championships, DOT Level One Safety Inspection, Courtesy Safety Check Day, Crete Carrier Corporation
SkillsUSA and our upcoming Nebraska SuperTech competition, I find that we are 30 to 40 and
even 50 percent higher in attendance than previous years’. Recently, we had over 120 guests AT-LARGE DIRECTOR
at the DOT Level One Safety Inspection in Scottsbluff. Our Nebraska Trucking website, (new TIM MCCORMICK
version currently under construction,) received 1,154 visits from 931 unique visitors and 80
percent of them were from a mobile device over the past six weeks. Fremont Contract Carriers, Inc.
Our social media followers continue to grow; we have 668 followers on LinkedIn; 2,021 STATE VICE PRESIDENT TO ATA
individual followers on our NTA Facebook page and almost another 700 on the other smaller DANNY TOMPKINS
pages Sheila single handedly manages. I don’t ‘tweet’ much, but between our Nebraska Truck-
ing and Truck Services accounts we have almost 1,800 followers that look to us for informa- Nebraska Transport Company
tion about what is going on in the trucking industry. Nebraska Trucker is currently reaching
over 6,600 hands each edition, turns over by those hands and we are getting tremendous new ALTERNATIVE STATE VICE PRESIDENT TO ATA
support from our advertisers. ERICH HELGE
This is no easy feat to keep these communication tools fresh, relevant and eye catching; it Seward Motor Freight
is quite evident from our growth in all these sectors that our efforts are working. If you’re not
joining us online, please do—I’m confident you’ll find something you’ll like! You can find us at: PAST CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARD
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Nebraska Trucking Association Truck Services, Inc. Don Adams Chris Klotz
Websites: www.nebtrucking.com and Website: www.truckservicesonline.com Dean Aden Tom Koenigs
Facebook: Truck Services, Inc. Steve Aherns Jean Kurtenbach
www.nebraskalogisticscouncil.com Twitter: @Truck_Services George Akerson Heidi Loop
Facebook: Nebraska Trucking Association, Nebraska Truck Crystal Anderson Mike Maloley
Tim Aschoff Terry McMullen
Driving Championships and Nebraska SuperTech Blaine Batten Ron Mencl
Twiter: @nebraskatrucker Dennis Bauder Lloyd Mettenbrink
LinkedIn: Nebraska Trucking Association David Billings Trey Mytty
Joanie M. Bogers
All of this is great news and I thank Sheila, our staff, volunteer leaders, Matthews Publish- Kurt Brown Ron Nolte
ing Group and YOU—our members—for tuning into all that we do on a daily basis to keep you Butch Brown Scott Olson
engaged and informed. Until next edition! Bob Clark Tonn Ostergard
Tom Coffey Dave Parker
Larry Johnson Mary Davie Jack Peetz
President Eldon Dokter Dean Petersen
Dwight Dunsworth Dick Pierson
Nebraska Trucking Association Dave Erlandson Tom Pirnie
[email protected] Brent Falgione Gene Quandt
Ross Faubel Dick Reiser
Corby Flagle Greg Reitmeier
Hugh Fugleberg Norm Riffel
Michael Galvin Scott Romans
Norman Geiken Ronald Romans
Rick Gomel John Sahling
Tom Hastings Roger Schmidt
Mark Hauptman Russell Stough
Erich Helge Danny Tompkins
Mike Herre Nick Vuko
Albert Hill Dave Walde
Duane Hobscheidt Curt Werner
Phillip Holliday Clarence Werner
Dan Hurt Jerry Wessel
Don Kaiser Bob Winter
Larry Kersten Brian Wood
Jerry Kilthau Rallen R. Zeitner
4 Nebraska Trucker - Issue 2, 2017 nebtrucking.com
Nebraska Trucker is owned by Truck Services, Inc., and is CHAIRMAN’S
published bimonthly by Matthews Publishing Group. For LETTER
additional copies, to order reprints of individual articles or to
become a subscriber, contact Diana Garcia at 402.476.8504. Greetings from Distribution Inc. in
Jennifer Matthews-Drake I can’t believe how fast this year and my Chairmanship is go-
Matthews Published Group, LLC ing. It’s April already and my year as Chairman is well over half
[email protected] over. It is very rewarding to be a part of everything happening at
the Association and I encourage everyone, regardless of your level
executive editor of interest, to find an area or event to get involved with.
production editor A couple of events that I’m very excited to talk about are:
Sheila O’Connor Trooper in a Truck and Town Hall meetings. As you will read more inside this edition, the
Trooper in a Truck project has been made possible with a grant through the Nebraska
art director State Patrol. One of the project’s goals is to improve other vehicles’ behavior in and around
Douglas J. Benjamin commercial vehicles. A recent updated study reveals that over 83 percent of truck related
[email protected] incidents are caused by the other vehicle. This ‘bad’ behavior is not only tragic and expensive
to the general population, but also to our companies, drivers and freight customers.
Kristian Anderson The concept of putting a Nebraska State Carrier Enforcement Officer inside a truck,
monitoring in real time other drivers’ behaviors and being able to ‘call ahead,’ to strategically
Thomas Grady placed patrol cars to pull the offending driver over has been successful in other states. We are
Callie Tuck Knapp very fortunate to partner not only with the NSP, but also with member trucking companies
contributing writers who have donated their trucks and drivers for a dedicated one-half to full day of enforcement
Renee Miller Feedback indicates that this is not only building a better understanding of what our driv-
Jennifer Barnett Reed ers and the NSP experience a daily basis, it is also building relationships between our drivers
Derek Reymant and the NSP. And, we’ve received a considerable amount of state and national coverage for
John Schultz the project. The long-term hope is, with over 3.5 million Class 8 trucks on the roads today,
Angela Thomas that a program like this will not only help educate and prevent other drivers’ bad habits, but
Todd Traub also if/when a driver takes unnecessary risks on the highway, they consider there ‘might’ be
a trooper in a truck that could result in a costly enforcement action (aka traffic ticket). Let’s
www.nebtrucking.com help spread the word and we’ll keep you informed as we move the project across the state. If
president you are interested in more information or providing a vehicle and driver, please contact Sheila
at [email protected] or 402-476-8504 ext. 105.
[email protected] Another great project NTA will take the lead on this year is what was formerly known
as the Nebraska State Patrol Carrier Enforcement Division’s Town Hall meetings. These
vice president meetings are held across the state to help our trucking companies (this is open to all inter-
Sheila O’Connor ested parties,) understand the many complexities that help us create one of the most cost
[email protected] efficient/safest freight/passenger systems in the country. Until recently, the NSP spearheaded
this annual effort of planning and hosting these meetings. However; this year, the Associa-
controller tion, on behalf of the industry, is taking the lead with our Director of Safety Training and
Keith Nesja Membership Development, Doug Doncheski. Doug, the NSP Carrier Enforcement Division
[email protected] and Elyse Mueller, FMCSA state director, will be holding eight meetings across the state to
address the many questions on the upcoming ELD implementation and other topics that
Nebraska Trucking Association is a statewide trade may arise. For dates and locations and times of the meetings visit our events calendar in this
association for commercial truck and bus operators and edition or www.nebtrucking.com/events/town-hall-meetings. I highly encourage you and your
affiliated businesses. It is a not-for-profit association staff to attend one or more of these meetings in your area for education and networking.
governed by a board of directors elected annually. Nebraska This is a great example of our industry working with our partners in enforcement to continue
Trucking is an affiliate of the American Trucking Association to provide affordable, accessible and informative programming. Please do not hesitate to
(ATA). ATA serves and represents the trucking industry on contact our NTA staff if you have questions or comments on these or other programs at your
a national level, influencing federal and state government Nebraska Trucking Association. Thank you for the opportunity to serve as your Chairman
actions, advancing positive trucking industry image, and until next edition, be safe!
providing education programs and industry research, and
promoting highway safety and security. Bob Winter
President & CEO, Distribution Inc.
For more information, contact Chair, Nebraska Trucking Association
Nebraska Trucking Association:
Issue 2, 2017 - Nebraska Trucker 5
1701 K Street
P.O. Box 81010
Lincoln, NE 68501
Phone 402.476.8504 Fax: 402.476.8570
6 Nebraska Trucker - Issue 2, 2017 nebtrucking.com
Is It One or The Other?
BY STEVE BRAWNER most important among commercial drivers for parking compared to 5.7 percent who
Contributing Writer but wasn’t even in the top 10 among motor didn’t use the technology. Seven percent of
carrier executives, but Rebecca Brewster, drivers said they had received a ticket for
More than 3.4 million heavy-duty Class 8 ATRI president, said executives don’t really parking on a shoulder or entrance ramp.
trucks travel the roads in America, according consider truck parking a separate issue apart
to the American Trucking Associations, and from infrastructure, “whereas for commercial Continues
all of them have to park. drivers, they live that problem every day.”
Unfortunately, there are not always Brewster pointed to studies that have
enough places to do that, leading the industry shown drivers are choosing to park early
to ask what should be done, and whether it’s rather than risk running out of
worth diverting funding from other infra- hours, and they are spending a
structure needs. lot of time looking for a spot.
A survey in Kansas of more
In a recent Nebraska Trucking Associ- than 1,300 drivers found a
ation survey answered by 43 members, 77 majority spent an average of
percent or 33, said the availability of truck at least 30 minutes searching
parking in Nebraska is an issue. The same for parking in that state.
percentage had concerns about private or Another study of more
commercial truck parking, while almost as than 2,600 drivers by the
many, 72 percent, said the lack of public Mid America Association
truck parking is an issue. Forty percent of of State Transportation
the respondents were company owners, while Officials found a similar
21 percent were drivers and 19 percent were result. In one ATRI case
safety managers. Another 21 percent were study involving 148 driv-
listed as “other.” ers who completed diaries,
drivers lost a median of
NTA members’ concerns are shared by 56 minutes of drive time
others in the industry. In the American Trans- a day, equaling 9,300
portation Research Institute’s 2016 “Critical miles a year or $4,600
Issues in the Trucking Industry” survey, truck in earnings. The problem
parking ranked fourth behind the electronic is worse for drivers with
logging device mandate, the hours of service electronic logging devices,
rule and the cumulative impact of regula- 10.6 percent of whom in one study
tions. Moreover, it’s moving up the list – from spent more than 30 minutes searching
fifth in 2015, sixth in 2014 and 2013, and
eighth in 2012. The issue ranked as the third
nebtrucking.com Issue 2, 2017 - Nebraska Trucker 7
“It is alarming how many times drivers Under the past two transportation funding located on the interstate including one ded-
are forced to make the choice to park in laws passed by Congress, truck parking areas icated to trucks at Gohner. Most are run by
undesignated parking, whether that’s on are eligible for federal dollars. That’s because private companies under contract.
a shoulder of the road or a highway exit of a provision known as “Jason’s Law” in
ramp or entrance ramp because there is no honor of Jason Rivenburg, a driver murdered Kyle Schneweis, Nebraska Department
available parking and they’re out of available in 2009 in South Carolina after parking at of Roads director, said his agency is careful
hours to drive,” Brewster said. an abandoned gas station, the only place about opening more in order to avoid com-
available, 13 days before his wife, Hope, gave peting with private industry. In one instance,
One solution is more publicly funded birth to twins. The killer stole $7. his agency was considering building a facility
parking, which has come under pressure in but cancelled when a private company built a
some states because of budget shortfalls. Nebraska has 22 rest stops, 21 of them truck stop in the vicinity.
HUB International Transportation Insurance Services, Inc. Regardless, money spent on parking is not
spent on roads. While rest areas don’t cost
Customized trucking insurance much compared to roadways, every dollar
solutions, national coverage, local helps for a department that has other ex-
operations and dedicated people are penses, including maintaining 500 buildings
what set HUB International apart. across the state.
Jeff Dillon, Senior Account Executive 888-365-0923 [email protected] “If you can find savings throughout the
organization, you can do one or two more
www.hubinternational.com projects a year, and that’s a good use of tax-
payers’ dollars,” he said.
Industry professionals who answered the
NTA’s survey seemed to agree. Asked if scarce
Highway Trust Fund dollars should be spent
on increasing roads and bridges or on creat-
ing more public parking places, more than
81percent, or 35 respondents, favored more
spending on roads and bridges.
Larry Johnson, president of the Nebraska
Trucking Association, said it might come
down to a choice: roads or parking.
“The issue of availability of safe and
secure truck parking is a huge discussion,”
he said. “With limited resources in the state
and federal budget for roads, the priority of
better roads or more safe and secure parking
should be looked at as an option. … If it is
an either-or, which is more important to the
Schneweis said the state is completing its
first ever freight plan before the end of the
year, a requirement by the federal govern-
ment. Officials will study how freight moves
through the state and how money should be
investing in Nebraska’s freight transportation
infrastructure, which would include truck
The problem is not as severe in Nebraska
8 Nebraska Trucker - Issue 2, 2017 nebtrucking.com
as in other states—particularly around major HEY, ARE YOU The Official Magazine of Nebraska Trucking Association | Volume 78 Number 6 | 2016 | $3.95 Value
metropolitan areas where land is more expen- LOOKING AT ME?
sive even while the need is greater. While Chad AdamsSterling Transportation Services
there is available truck parking, “It’s just not Yeah, advertising works.
in the right places at the right times,” ATRI’s ATRI’s Top 10 ConcNeEBrnRsAS–KAImTRpUrCoKvEiRng —TrucIkSiSnUgE’s6,I2m01a6ge—– Mwewmw.bneebrtSrupcokitnlgig.chomt: Alex Clark, ORDP
Brewster said. Schneweis hasn’t heard many For more information on advertising in Nebraska Trucker
complaints about parking in Nebraska from contact our publisher, Jennifer Matthews-Drake,
industry representatives. at [email protected]
In Nebraska, truck parking becomes a 1
bigger problem in the winter when storms hit
there or in neighboring states. Captain Gerry THINGS ARE SHAPING UP
Krolikowski, commander of the Nebraska
State Patrol’s Carrier Enforcement Division, Things are coming together at the home of our new facility
said authorities must close part of I-80 at on the southeast corner of I-80 and Highway 50 in Omaha.
least once a year, sometimes as far east as
Kearney or Grand Island because of weather This new 180,000 square-foot facility boasts 60 service bays inlcuding six dedicated
conditions in Wyoming. When that happens, to Express Assessment, as well as a full-service body shop. We’ll be sure to have
drivers are required to exit and find parking,
and then parking becomes congested. Nor- the parts you need with our 34,000 square-foot parts warehouse. Our new site also
mally, the State Patrol will ticket trucks that includes a six-bay training center for diesel technician employees. Keeping our techs
park on interstate exits and entrances. Too
many vehicles are hit there, especially off the up-to-date with the current technology is key to quick repairs and
exit ramp, where speeds are higher. But when keeping our customers on the road.
weather is severe, Krolikowski said troopers
are more lenient. Growth in our customer demand means it’s time for a monumental upgrade.
“Of course, we’re human and realize that Set to open this Fall.
drivers are human as well and that there are
things that they can’t prevent,” he said. “It’s Follow our social media to track our progress.
those situations where we have no other re-
course. They’re clearly violating a controlled www.truckcentercompanies.com
sign, no parking area, and it’s due to lack Parts and service open 7 days • Total parts inventory over $10,000,000 • Body shops
of planning on their part—then we have to Parts delivery • Order parts online • Service for all makes and models • Fully certified technicians
certainly take enforcement action. But if the
interstate closes because of weather and they Issue 2, 2017 - Nebraska Trucker 9
get caught between a rock and a hard place,
we would expect our troopers to be under-
standing as well.”
Krolikowski said his agency allows
truckers to park at the state’s four weigh
stations—two at North Platte and two at
Waverly. Both can easily accommodate 15-20
vehicles going each direction. Some do take
advantage—more so at the two North Platte
ATRI’s research has shown that private
truck stops are drivers’ preferred location to
- stop for their required 10-hour breaks, and a
number of large providers are ready for them.
WHEN YOU’RE STUCK ON THE SIDE OF THE Bosselman’s Travel Center in Grand Island
ROAD, WE’VE GOT YOU COVERED. offers more than 200 spots where drivers can
park and then enjoy a restaurant, bar, fast
Ask about our Choice Plus Coverage Endorsement which includes food, and many other amenities, including a
towing and rental reimbursement. church, massage therapist, chiropractor and
movie theater with free movies for truckers.
Corporate Office Regional Office Sapp Brothers Truck Stops also has a suite of
3311 Daniels Lane 1719 South Locust Street amenities. Brian Haggerty, vice president of
South Sioux City, NE 68776 Grand Island, NE 68801 operations of the company’s Travel Center
Division, said showers are cleaned after every
402-494-4251 308-382-2280 use.
WWW.JOEMORTEN.COM Dave Shoemaker with Shoemaker’s Travel
WWW.FACEBOOK.COM/JOEMORTENANDSON Centers said its location in Lincoln has 100
parking spots. When it snows and closes the
SAVE THE DATE! interstate, it’s hard to get customers to the
fuel islands. During a winter storm, he’s seen
NEBRASKA TRUCK DRIVING trucks parked on both sides of the four-lane
and even in the median. He said drivers do a
JOIN US IN GRAND ISLAND, NE good job of parking where they should, “Un-
JUNE 2-3 til it gets full, and then they’ll park anywhere,
wherever they’ll fit. It’s just like anything
Learn more at else. Every once in a while, you’ll get some
www.nebtrucking.com/events/nebraska-truck-driving-championships guy that just, I don’t know what the hell he’s
thinking. He’ll just park there. He’s done
10 Nebraska Trucker - Issue 2, 2017 looking. He ain’t going to go no farther.”
On the other hand, drivers sometimes
direct traffic for each other.
“It’s pretty cool the things they do,” he
said. “And guys work together sometimes
really well. … They’re a pretty congenial
Haggerty said some of his locations are
full five nights out of seven, and on certain
days at certain travel centers, there are
problems with bottlenecks. On those nights,
security personnel help drivers find spots that
don’t obstruct business.
For private sector providers, providing
truck parking is not cheap. Brandi Bosselman,
senior vice president and corporate counsel,
said Bosselman’s originally used blacktop but
replaced it with concrete to better withstand
Nebraska’s summers. Shoemaker said his stop
invests $100,000 into adding truck parking
every year, which results in about 20 extra
spaces. Reminded that number equals about stores are all landlocked, said its president, to address the parking issue. Some stops let
$5,000 per spot, he said, laughing, “Don’t tell DeLone Wilson. Instead of increasing the drivers reserve spots. Sapp Brothers Truck
me that. That’s scary once you get to thinking parking area, the company is considering Stops charges $10, with half the proceeds do-
about it.” The stop bought 80 acres surround- improving the lighting to increase safety at nated to charity including the St. Christopher
“It is alarming how many times drivers are forced to make the
choice to park in undesignated parking, whether that’s on a shoulder
of the road or a highway exit ramp or entrance ramp because there
is no available parking and they’re out of available hours to drive.”
- Rebecca M. Brewster, ATRI President
ing its current location and intends to use the stops. Development and Relief Fund, which serves
some for parking expansion. Other expenses include lighting and truckers with high medical bills. Meanwhile,
NATSO’s Park My Truck phone application
Cubby’s, which has four stops in Nebras- cleanup. Haggerty said Sapp Brothers crew lets drivers see where parking is available
ka with a total of about 200 spots, looked members clean the lot under the theory that
into acquiring adjacent land at one of its “Trash invites trash.” Continues
stores, but it had been purchased, so now the
The private sector is finding other ways
More drivers prefer PrePass. Call 866-228-1424 and
mention promo code NETA or visit
The original weigh station bypass and electronic tolling solution. prepass.com/ne to try risk free.*
*Offer good for first-time PrePass customers only and does not include the tolling payment service. Service HELP Inc. is proud to support NTA and its members
contingent upon application approval. Carriers and operators must meet the minimum Inspection Selection
System safety score to qualify for PrePass. Qualified applicants will receive service transponder and one month Issue 2, 2017 - Nebraska Trucker 11
of service at no up-front cost. Service may be cancelled at any time. At the end of the trial period, service will
automatically renew at regular PrePass rates. Upon conclusion of service, transponder must be returned
within 30 days to PrePass or a $100 hardware fee will be assessed.
based on reports from participating truck said Sapp Brothers has someone go outside a back to its earlier requirements, it meant
stops. The service requires personnel to count few times a night and count the spaces. fewer trucks across the country were being
spots, which means the numbers are not al- forced to leave the road together at 1 a.m.
ways current, and not every stop participates. Other options? Sixty-five percent of the
Moreover, less than half of the fleets who NTA’s survey respondents said they park at “With the recent changes to the hours of
responded to the NTA’s survey said they are big retailers like Walmart, Lowe’s and Home service as an example, maybe there are more
willing to pay a small fee for safe and secure Depot. Some larger fleets are building their regulatory choices that could be investigat-
parking with limited amenities. But truck own terminals with amenities. And govern- ed,” the NTA’s Johnson said.
stops do participate in the service. Haggerty ment solutions exist outside of simply build-
ing more spots. When the restart rule reverted
Put the new logistics to work for you. © 2012 United Parcel Service of America, Inc. UPS, the UPS brandmark, and the color brown
12 Nebraska Trucker - Issue 2, 2017 are trademarks of United Parcel Service of America, Inc. All rights reserved.
Trooper in a Truck:
Collaborative safety project
sees immediate results
BY SHEILA O’CONNOR driving. When violations are observed, they ous operations and has had good success
NTA Vice President call to a nearby Trooper in a marked patrol in identifying violations in the Lincoln and
unit, who stops the violator, and issues a Omaha area. More operations are planned
The Nebraska State Patrol and the citation or warning. in the future, not only in the metro areas, but
Nebraska Trucking Association have started more rural areas of the state as well.
a new collaborative safety project called Lieutenant Kurt Von Minden said,
“Trooper in a Truck.” The statewide project “Having eyes in commercial motor vehicles The Nebraska State Patrol and the
is designed to identify and address unsafe allows us to see things we wouldn’t normally Nebraska Trucking Association recognize the
driving behaviors in and around large com- see from a marked patrol unit. It’s also an value of working together on a project such
mercial motor vehicles. invaluable tool to work with truckers to help as this. Having a public-private partnership
tackle the issue of public safety on our road- is an extremely valuable tool in promoting
Troopers ride in cabs of commercial ways. We’re very grateful for the relationship public safety.
motor vehicles watching for unsafe driving we have with the trucking industry, and value
behaviors, such as driving while texting, their help.” If your organization is interested in pro-
following too closely, speeding and aggressive viding support, please contact Sheila O’Con-
The partnership has already held numer- nor at 402-476-8504 ext. 105.
NSP CARRIER ENFORCEMENT SGT. PHIL THEDE WITH Issue 2, 2017 - Nebraska Trucker 13
A DRIVER FROM CRETE CARRIER CORPORATION
BY STEVE BRAWNER customers, and speaks positively about the
Contributing Writer company.
PHOTOGRAPHY BY THOMAS GRADY “Joey’s the best of the best,” he said. “He
does a great job for us. … He’s very neat
Joe Mark has lived a trucker’s life—40 and clean, too, very respectful, great appear-
years on the road, the last 23 as an owner-op- ance. If I had 10, I could get rid of 30 other
erator—and when he’s not driving his truck drivers.”
for Gary, South Dakota-based Cliff Viessman,
Inc., he’s using it to serve others, or he’s The great appearance is no accident. He
swapping stories about trucking at the coffee wears Viessman shirts on the road and rein-
shop with the old-timers. forced his driveway at his home in Columbus
with extra concrete and rebar so it could
“He truly has a passion for trucking,” withstand the weight of a semi, which he
said his wife, Marian. washes and waxes there.
The owner of J Mark Transportation has “It looks nice going down the road,
driven a tanker truck for Cliff Viessman, Inc. and I like to have everything shiny, plus the
since May 2002 hauling syrup, corn syrup DOT leaves you alone most generally if your
and oil, along with fructose for bee farmers. truck’s clean and shiny and you keep it up,”
Tim Miller, safety director, said of the
company’s 350 trucks, only about 20 are Even when he’s off duty, Mark doesn’t sit
owner operated. Joe’s name does not come still for long. Behlen Mfg. Co. in Columbus
up very often in his office, which is a good lets him borrow a drop deck trailer to haul
thing. He delivers on time, relates well with
14 Nebraska Trucker - Issue 2, 2017 nebtrucking.com
nebtrucking.com THE MARK FAMILY: DA JANAE, JOE,
MARION, KELSIE & RACHEL
Issue 2, 2017 - Nebraska Trucker 15
floats during parades. Through the years, he’s said with a laugh. “I only remember taking passed away in 1982 (at age 52), why, we had
hauled hand-made quilts from area churches one vacation in all the years. Went to Cali- about 20 combines and I don’t know how
to be shipped overseas. At home in Colum- fornia with Mom and Dad when I was about many trucks just combining our crops. It was
bus, he hangs out at the coffee shop with five years old. That’s it.” just all your neighbors coming together. You
retired truckers and talks about what life was worked together, and that’s what happens.”
like when they were on the road, and how it’s The values he learned there “built your
all changed. stamina and your integrity,” Marian said, and It was a life he planned to enjoy through
“We talk about new things, old things, “We learned how to work and treat people
and just a little bit of everything,” he said. right, and you worked hard and treated
“Old stories, old tales, the things we used to people fair, and you helped your friends and
do, how we used to do them, different than your neighbors out” - Joe Mark
what they’re doing them now. You’d break
down, somebody would stop and help you prepared him to drive long hours on the road. adulthood. After high school, he earned an
way back when, but now everybody’s got “We learned how to work and treat peo- associate’s degree in agribusiness from what
Qualcomms, PeopleNet, cell phones. Nobody was then Platte College and now is Central
stops. They just blow right on by.” ple right, and you worked hard and treated Community College in Columbus. His plan
people fair, and you helped your friends and was to return to the family farm, but it wasn’t
Joe, 62, developed the character traits he your neighbors out,” he said. “You didn’t big enough to support three generations, so
would need for trucking while growing up on really … cross anybody. Everybody worked he started driving part-time hauling grain and
a family farm in Platte Center. The family – together, and you got it done. When my mom
his parents, Bob and Donna, and his siblings
who were eight and nine years younger than
he – raised corn, beans and milo along with
hogs. It was “a lot of work, and we didn’t do
much of nothing but school and work and
church. Drank a little beer and relaxed,” he
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16 Nebraska Trucker - Issue 2, 2017 nebtrucking.com
livestock. He began driving full-time in about skills instructor for developmentally disabled “We’ve had to get in there with the cows
1978 as an employee driver. individuals. The early trips, she said, were and calves,” he said. “Oh yeah, we took some
“Scary. … You’re just way up there, and chances. There’s no doubt about that. A bud-
He had grown up on a farm so he had you’re looking down on those little bitty dy of mine and I were talking about that the
experience with trucks, but he learned to be a cars, and some of the things that people do in other day. We took some crazy chances, lucky
professional from those around him. their cars that aren’t so safe, expecting those we didn’t even get stomped on and killed.”
70,000 pounds of weight behind us to stop
“The old-timers would put the new guy in on a dime. It gave me a deeper appreciation He said an experienced gentleman taught
the middle of four or five guys, and you’d go, for the semi truck drivers.” him how to relate to cattle – speak gently,
like, to South Dakota to load cattle,” he said. don’t get excited, pet them. It usually works,
“They all watched and you did something Her days on the road ended the next year though he’s been kicked a time or two.
wrong. Of course we had CBs back then, and when their first daughter was born. Mean-
they told you everything you did wrong, and while, she continued working with the de- “I think Joe’s very caring and compas-
they ridiculed you and made fun of you, and velopmentally disabled population. She now sionate when it comes to animals,” Marian
sooner or later you’d catch on, and they just works for Mosaic, a faith-based organization. said. “He has a way of talking to them.”
taught you how to do it right. It’s really a
hands-on learning. That’s something I wish Meanwhile, Joe continued working as an In 1994, he bought a used 1989 T800
they would get back to.” employee driver hauling cattle and flatbed Kenworth with a $40,000 loan and began
loads for several companies, and then hauled hauling hogs, which are easier than cattle be-
He met Marian Wareham in 1984. A car parts in a dryvan trailer for six or seven cause once the vehicle is moving they typical-
Californian, she was on a family trip visiting years. ly lie down and go to sleep. Soon afterwards,
Nebraska, her mother’s home state, when he learned a valuable lesson five miles east of
a mutual friend introduced them. As she Hauling cattle is a special skill. The Yankton, South Dakota.
describes it, “I was visiting family, and then I animals are top-heavy, and the driver has to
met the bull hauler.” make sure they stay up and healthy – “like “I laid my first truck over six months
pulling a tanker that doesn’t have baffles, like after I bought it. … Filling a coffee cup. I
They married in 1985. She would accom- I do now,” he said. Moreover, the driver helps popped the top off and reached for my
pany him as he hauled cattle and anhydrous load and unload the animals.
ammonia on her days off working as a life Continues
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Issue 2, 2017 - Nebraska Trucker 17
thermos and dropped off the edge of the Being accident-free is no accident. Instead, “We got down and nothing broke, noth-
road. … Cost me about five weeks of down- that kind of safety record requires constant ing fell on us. It was pretty awesome,” he
time, and, yeah, it was not a fun deal,” he vigilance. said.
“I have to look out for everybody else and Joe and Marian have shared a trucker’s
Nor was it fun for the pigs – five of whom try and second guess what they’re going to do life. He typically is gone two days and back
died, and Joe had to pay for them without next, and 99 percent of the time, just the way one. They visit several times a day when he’s
being able to eat them. There was “lots of they’re acting and driving, you can about tell on the road – early in the morning, midafter-
squealing” after the accident, but the rest what they’re going to do,” he said. “I just noon, and then they tell each other good-
survived in part because Joe previously had have to be the defensive driver, I guess is the night. While he’s gone, she writes notes about
screwed pieces of plastic over the air holes bottom line.” the topics they need to discuss. Sometimes
along the wall. Otherwise, the pigs would she still rides with him.
have suffered a lot more broken legs. The sur- His most unusual haul occurred in about
vivors were unloaded into horse trailers and 2000 when he was taking a donated church Together they raised their three daughters:
taken to a sale barn before being transported altar from a pickle farm west of Spalding, Ammie Jo, Kelsie and Rachel. Ammie Jo has
to Sioux City, Iowa. Meanwhile, Joe made the Nebraska, to a Lincoln publishing company. two sons – the oldest, Alix, serves on the USS
front page of the Yankton newspaper, which Eventually, it was placed in a convent. The Harry S. Truman, a nuclear-powered aircraft
published several photos of the mishap. To call came from Dean Hanke, his high school carrier. Like other families, they stayed busy
add insult to injury, the accident occurred on vocational agriculture teacher who then with sports, dances and other family func-
his 40th birthday. His wife’s response: “Hey, was the farm manager. The altar was 10-15 tions. The secret to raising children from the
way to go over the hill, Joe!” feet long and composed of 1.5-2-inch-thick road is communicating and staying on the
marble. Also included were several six-foot same page, he said.
It was a mistake he did not repeat, statues. The entire set-up was valued in the
and he has not had a chargeable accident six figures, Hanke said. The altar had to be “A lot of it was left to Marian,” he said.
before or since. He now has about 3 million put together like puzzle pieces and tied down “There’s no doubt about that. She was the
accident-free miles behind him, including 2 on two air ride drop deck flatbed trailers, a strong one of the bunch. She was here putting
million with Cliff Viessman, Inc. process that took about 10 hours. up with it all, and I just had to put the fires
out when I’d call home.”
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18 Nebraska Trucker - Issue 2, 2017 nebtrucking.com
As she described it, “You just learn to Along with taking care of his truck, he “They’re always willing to help,” he said.
take care of things as they arise and then say, also takes care of his body. He’s tried to exer- “Whatever it is, they’re more than willing to
‘I understand how you feel, but this is the cise on the road, although that’s been harder do whatever it takes to go that extra mile.”
way it is.’ Your structure has to be totally the past couple of years because he’s been
there at all times. You’re welcome to talk to making longer trips. Still, she makes sure he Johnson said owner-operators are as im-
your dad about it when he gets home, but I eats right. portant as fleets to the NTA’s mission.
guarantee you he will say the same thing I do
because when it came to parenting we agreed, “He doesn’t take a 42-ounce soda pop,” “Joey has proven to be a great example
and the girls knew that. You know, they had she said. “He takes 42 ounces of water. … of the importance of owner-operators in the
to know that.” He has a cooler, so we cook meals in the two industry and our membership,” he said.
days he’s in together, and we pack his cooler
The two sell truck care cosmetics for up, and it’s mostly fruits and vegetables and a After 40 years as a driver, Joe plans to
California Custom Products. At car and little bit of meat and very little carbs.” retire next year, but he’ll get back on the road
truck shows, they’ll set up booths and peddle to show Marian “some of the neat places
their wares. They help sponsor the Wheel They have enjoyed being involved in the of the world that she’s never made it to that
Jam Truck Show in Huron, South Dakota, a Nebraska Trucking Association. Their rela- I’ve been there forever.” They like to travel to
nationwide event with antique and new cars tionship with the president, Larry Johnson, Arizona in the wintertime and go to con-
and trucks, where they’ll walk the grounds began at a truck show in Columbus during certs. They enjoy planning picnics, where Joe
and offer their products to their fellow the Nebraska Truck Driving Championships
truckers. Show and Shine event. Johnson said Joe was barbecues using an “ugly drum smoker”—a
“displaying his fantastic-looking truck,” and 55-gallon barrel.
“A lot of times when we go to shows and he asked him to park it in front of the “No-
we have our little vendor set-up, we also put Zone” trailer at the Nebraska State Fair in Until he retires, he’ll keep learning about
backpacks on and we go around and look Lincoln. Joe became an active member who trucking.
at all the old cars and the old trucks, and attended workshops and social events, while
we made a lot of friends that way at truck the organization has helped him periodically “I had an old-timer tell me one time,
shows,” she said. with business concerns. ‘You’ve got to learn something new every
day. The day you quit learning is the day you
better find another profession, because you’re
going to be in trouble,’” he said.
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nebtrucking.com Issue 2, 2017 - Nebraska Trucker 19
Spring Conference, Board of Directors Meeting
and Foundation Golf Fundraiser
BY SHEILA O’CONNOR The board meeting will begin at 9:00 a.m. Prizes will be awarded following golf around
NTA Vice President followed by a program by Lynn Hinderacker. 4:45 p.m.
Lynn is with WOWBIZ Academy and Pointfor-
PHOTOS COURTESY OF NTA ward Consulting. He is a consultant, trainer, The fundraiser this year will be for the
talk show host and entrepreneur who provides Nebraska Trucking Foundation, a 501 (c)(3)
Mark your calendars for Thursday, May insightful guidance. He has disrupted three nonprofit, educational foundation which pro-
18 for the Annual Spring Conference, Board industries and turned around 10 corporations vides scholarship funds to in-state community
of Directors Meeting and Foundation Golf include Taco Bell. Best of all, he’s funny and colleges and universities that offer programs
Fundraiser. This year’s event will be held at highly creative! specific to truck transportation and accepts
the beautiful Iron Horse Golf Club in Ash- gifts in any amount for the permanent en-
land, NE. Lunch will be served at 11:00 a.m. and dowment fund.
the golf scramble will begin at 11:45 a.m.
For sponsorship opportunities, please contact Sheila O’Connor
at [email protected] or 402-476-8504 ext. 105
or registration information, contact Diana Garcia at
[email protected] or 402-476-8504 ext. 109.
Registration and payment deadline is May 12.
2016 Golf Tournament Photos
Ed Shada with Great Western Bank
Rick Sandvig with Metropolitan Tammy and Shane Aherns with AON
Community College Foundation and Issue 2, 2017 - Nebraska Trucker 21
Josh Quilling with Cummins
Please help us welcome our newest members to the Association! It is important to remember to thank them for their support by being a mem-
ber. All things being equal, remember to support member companies that understand and support the issues and concerns that face our industry
every day. With unity comes strength and prosperity for those that value the Nebraska Trucking Association mission.
Agri-City Insurance Imperial Supplies, LLC Charles Pinson,
Norfolk, Neb. Green Bay, Wis. Omaha, Neb.
American AG Transport, LLC JDW Transportation Equipment RSM US LLP
York, Neb. Omaha, Neb. Omaha, Neb.
Aurora Cooperative Elevator Co. K & S Trucking, LLC Sterling Brokerage Services
Aurora, Neb. West Point, Neb. Blair, Neb.
AXA Advisors Rex Kirkpatrick Trucking Stillmock Trucking
Omaha, Neb. Imperial, Neb. Omaha, Neb.
B. Weber Inc. The Harry A. Koch Co. Stockyards Logistics Company, LLC
Eagle, Neb. Omaha, Neb. Omaha, Neb.
Cozy Hill Excavating, LLC Penske Truck Leasing Timpte, Inc.
Plattsmouth, Neb. Omaha, Neb. David City, Neb.
Eastern Nebraska Excavating, LLC Peterbilt of Des Moines Zonar
Omaha, Neb. Altoona, Iowa Seattle, Wash.
Help pave tHe Way to WisHes
The Nebraska Truck Driving Championships Committee is
selling wristbands as an additional fundraiser for this year’s
charity, Make-A-Wish Nebraska.
Proudly show your support of NTDC and Make-A-Wish by purchasing for
yourself, your team, organization, family and friends! Wristbands are one-
inch wide, bright blue in color with white lettering. Each band is $5.00 and
the proceeds go to Make-A-Wish Nebraska.
A limited supply has been ordered and are sure to sell quickly!
To purchase, contact Sheila O’Connor at [email protected]
or 402-476-8504 ext. 105.
NEBRASKA TRUCK DRIVING
22 Nebraska Trucker - Issue 2, 2017 nebtrucking.com
Along the Route
Recent events and news from Nebraska Trucker advertisers
The clock is ticking and we’re counting you’re at it, you can get some laundry for that too. There will be a customer
down the minutes until we get to make done with our on-site laundry facilities. lounge complete with comfortable furni-
the move to our brand-new location You won’t have to leave to go ture and a relaxing atmosphere, a quiet
here in Omaha, Nebraska. We’re looking looking for healthy choices either, we’ll working area, charging stations and
forward to growing into the 180,000 have extensive health-conscious cuisine complimentary Wi-Fi. So, stop on by. As
square-foot facility coming together on available 24 hours a day, and you can you can tell, no matter who you are and
the southeast corner of I-80 and High- get your daily exercise with a jog on the what you need, when you come through
way 50. The building is sitting on 26 trails or play around with your pet in the Truck Center Companies, we’ve got you
acres, all to be utilized in serving you pet-friendly area. covered.
better. Don’t worry if you have work
As many of you already know or sleep to catch up on. We have a place enhance your fuel efficiency, reduce heat
there will be 60 service bays with several buildup and help asset accountability.
dedicated exclusively to Express Assess- Bauer Built Tire has built its reputa- MRTI tires reduce downtime immediate-
ment, a full-service body shop, 6-bay tion on retread tires and operates seven ly and are smart for your budget and are
training center and a 34,000 square-foot separate Michelin® Pre-Mold Retread environmentally friendly.
parts warehouse. All these features will plants across the Midwest each equipped
be available to help get your truck back with state-of-the-art technology. There We can help you find the right treads
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But we won’t stop there. We repair centers more reliable than Bauer 30 locations across the Midwest, find the
have plenty more to share about this Built. nearest Bauer Built Tire & Service Cen-
new dealership. Additionally, we’ll be ter location at bauerbuilt.com.
offering conveniences to make sure your Our tire retread process can reduce
time off the road is never wasted. While fleet downtime, increase casing life,
you wait for your truck to be checked
and serviced by our top technicians, feel
free to enjoy a movie or episode of your
favorite TV show in our 3-screen minia-
ture amphitheater or challenge a friend
to a game in the video arcade. While
nebtrucking.com Issue 2, 2017 - Nebraska Trucker 23
DRIVER OF THE MONTH
March 2017: Paul Hanson
Alpha Mail Carrier
BY SHEILA O’CONNOR
NTA Vice President
Paul has more than 30 years of safe driving with Alpha
Mail Carrier and over 36 years of employment with the
He has accumulated more than four million miles in
his career. Nominated by Scott Roman who wrote, “Paul
is friendly, safe, courteous and very conscientious about
his and others’ safety while on the road.”
Outside of work, he is very devoted to his family.
DAVID ROMANS, PAUL HANSON AND BRIAN ROMANS
DIGITAL MAGAZINE NOW AVAILABLE!
You may view Nebraska Trucker — complete with sound effects — online with a week of distribution.
Another awesome feature of this great new technology is that websites in the digital magazine are “live.”
So, viewers may click on a site featuring in an ad and be transported directly to an advertiser’s website.
Check it out: www.nebtrucking.com
This is just one more service that we’re happy to offer
on behalf of our NT advertisers
24 Nebraska Trucker - Issue 2, 2017 nebtrucking.com
2017 CALENDAR OF EVENTS ADVERTISER RESOURCE INDEX
May 2 - 4 May Allied Oil & Tire..............................................19
Intermodal Operations and Maintenance Business Meeting,
Lombard, IL Bauer Built Tire.............................................16
May 5 Global Blockchain Business Council and Greater Omaha Great West Casualty Co.............. Back cover
Chamber, ‘New Kid on the Blockchain’
May 7-10 ATA Leadership Meeting, an Antonio, TX
HUB International Insurance........................8
May 9-11 Safety Management Council Courtesy Safety Scale Checks
May 9: North Platte and May 11: Waverly J.J. Keller & Associates..............................18
May 10 Leading Safety with Nebraska Safety Council, Omaha Joe Morton & Son, Inc.................................10
May 17 MITA 2017 Nebraska World Trade Conference Nebraska Trucker.....................................9, 24
May 18 Spring Conference and Foundation Golf Outing, Ashland Nebraska Trucking Association...........10, 22
May 24-25 DOT Hazardous Materials Training, NE Safety Council, Lincoln Northland Insurance....................................17
May 25-27 ATHS National Convention and Truck Show, Des Moines, IA RDO Truck Centers............Inside front cover
June 2-3 Nebraska Truck Driving Championships, Grand Island
Truck Center Companies................................9
Town Hall Meetings: NTA, partnering with FMCSA and the Nebraska State
Patrol, will hold Town Hall meetings across the state to discuss ELDs and Taylor & Martin Auctioneers.........................8
other topics. These will be held in the evenings, 6 – 9 p.m. with presentations
by each agency. UPS..................................................................12
• June 12: Boarders Inn – Grand Island This edition of Nebraska Trucker was made
possible with the support of these corporate
• June 13: Central Community College- Lexington advertisers. They support the trucking
industry by enabling Nebraska Trucking
• June 14: Best Western- Sidney Association to provide this publication to
its members, prospective members, elected
• June 15: Hampton Inn- Scottsbluff officials and the business community at
large. They deserve your consideration and
• June 19: Firespring- Lincoln patronage when making your corporate
purchasing decisions. Thank you!
• June 20: Omaha
PLEASE VISIT NEBTRUCKING.COM
• June 21: Divots Conference Center- Norfolk TO SEE THE DIGITAL VERSION OF
NEBRASKA TRUCKER WITH LIVE
• June 22: Peppermill- Valentine LINKS TO ADVERTISERS’ WEBSITES.
June 12-14 Truckload Carriers Association, ‘WorkForce Builders Issue 2, 2017 - Nebraska Trucker 25
Conference,’ Kansas City, MO
July 13 July
Nebraska SuperTech Competition, Central Community College,
Aug 6-12 CVSA and National Truck Driving Championships, Orlando, FL
Sept 20-21 Fall Management Conference, Lincoln
Inland Truck Parts
Getting it Right the First Time
BY RENEE MILLER Foods, Microsoft, Southwest Airlines and are contributing and each employee has the
Contributing Writer countless other companies have Employee opportunity to grow their knowledge.” This
Stock Ownership Plans (ESOPs). It’s not just loyalty and commitment extends not only to
PHOTOS COURTESY OF INLAND TRUCK PARTS employee stock ownership that has value at the company itself, but to the company’s cus-
ITP, though. It’s the day-to-day involvement tomer base as well. A business doesn’t exist
Every driver knows it’s going to happen. of employees in every aspect of the business. solely for the benefit of the owner or, in this
Sometime. Somewhere. A truck is going to In fact, Greg Klein, the current President of case, owners. It exists to serve its customers.
break down and need servicing and repair, or ITP, reported that “the employees have picked Everyone in business knows that ‘if the cus-
be held up in the shop for preventive or rou- their favorite slogan which is displayed in tomer ain’t happy, ain’t no one happy.’ Geoff
tine maintenance. On the road, the mantra is many of the ITP stores. ‘At ITP we act like we Garafola, IT Manager of ITP, underscores the
not ‘time is money’ – but ‘moving is money.’ own the place, because we do!’” relationship between employee ownership
Breakdowns and even preventive mainte- and customer service. “We believe that being
nance creates downtime for drivers that can One of the benefits of an employee-owned
be costly – financially and emotionally. The
stress escalates when parts can’t be found, GROUND BREAKING CEREMONY INCLUDING EMPLOYEES FROM CHIEF CONSTRUCTION,
technicians don’t have answers to solve the NEBRASKALAND NATIONAL BANK, INLAND TRUCK PARTS AND SERVICE, GRAND
problem, or needed services aren’t available. ISLAND AREA ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT AND CITY OF GRAND ISLAND
If you’re that driver and you’re in Nebraska,
there are now five Inland Truck Parts and business model is that employees feel they an employee owned company takes customer
Service (ITP) locations to come to your aid. have a stake in what happens; they have a service to the next level – where our employ-
seat at the table; they have a voice about how ees, the actual owners of the company, make
On April 7, ITP celebrated the ground- things are done. Vollmar said it well. “We a huge difference in the customer’s experience
breaking ceremony for their new location in have built a culture at Inland that makes it by taking a vested interest in the success of
Grand Island. Regional Operations Manager feel more like a family business in each of the business.”
of ITP, Matt Vollmar, said “Grand Island our locations. 100 percent employee own-
is a growing transportation hub in Central ership is the driving force that gives each As the Internet has made online shop-
Nebraska.” If success is moving forward and employee the sense that they are contributing ping commonplace, and brick and mortar
achieving an end result, ITP can be consid- in the success of their company.” This kind businesses have often become more interested
ered a success. Success, however, is deter- of work environment generates loyalty and in marketing products than in those who will
mined over time; not over just one fiscal year, commitment. Dave Schaefer, CFO of Inland actually use them, the quality of customer
or during one upswing in the economy, or ITP agrees. “100 percent employee owner- service has suffered. How often does an item
when one new building is built. Even as ITP ship…gives each employee the sense that they purchased inexpensively off the Internet, end
expands, its real success is its commitment to up being an incorrect item, or an item that
its enduring vision and values.
The founders of ITP showed vision and
values from the beginning. The company was
founded in 1944 in Minneapolis, MN and
started significant employee ownership in
1982. It became 100 percent employee owned
in 1995 just four years after Starbucks had
initiated the same move in 1991. Imagine,
ITP was running neck and neck with Star-
buck’s in their vision! Of course, now, Whole
26 Nebraska Trucker - Issue 2, 2017 nebtrucking.com
won’t address the problem that needs to be will continue to be technology driven. We’ve comes to the job already having spent much
fixed? How often does the store clerk seem built a strong technology backbone at ITP of his life understanding the role of technol-
to want to merely shuffle you down anoth- and have invested huge amounts of money ogy in the work he does, and the needs that
er aisle than actually have the answer you and time to get our technicians the equipment will continue to unfold in the future.
need? Customer service can only be as good and training they need to be effective in their Vision and values are the heartbeat of a
as the training that employees receive. “With work. We’re consistently looking for places to company that succeeds over time. When a
company’s vision and values are clear, con-
cise, and compelling, there’s a good chance
One of the benefits of an employee- it will positively impact an entire industry.
Like trucks, the transportation industry itself
owned business model is that employees is complicated, complex, and sometimes
unwieldy. The support services of companies
feel they have a stake in what happens; like ITP can help ease the stress of drivers
they have a seat at the table; they have a who know it’s going to happen. Sometime.
voice about how things are done. Somewhere. The truck is going to need parts
and service to keep moving from point to
point. If you’re a driver near one of the many
ITP locations throughout the United States,
you’ll be able to count on one thing: ITP
will get it right the first time. Yep, they get it
a dedicated training center,” says Garafola, offer technology that adds value.” right the first time, because they’re trained
“investments in our employee-owners knowl- Steve Toner, the Grand Island store man- to get it right the first time and they care
edge through hands-on training is critical ager, is a lifetime resident of Grand Island. enough to get it right the first time. What that
to providing what our customers need. He and his family have a heart for Nebraska means is that when you need a brake job,
Additionally, our folks are offered a variety and the industries that need trucks to operate or there’s a shimmy in the steering wheel, or
of soft-skill training, on topics like ethics, efficiently. Steve’s father, Larry, who owned your onboard computer has crashed, or your
communication, and etiquette – raising the and operated the local Case International reefer battery is dead, you’ll be back movin’
bar on what you might expect to find when Harvester dealership for many years talked on down the highway in short order because
having your truck repaired.” about technology himself in an article in The you’re dealing with employee owners who
What makes ITP stand out from its Grand Island Independent in 2004. “The know what the heck they’re doing. Moving
competitors is not only the extraordinary biggest challenge” he said, “is keeping up is money. ITP will keep you moving, and that
customer service they offer, but the quality with the technology that’s changing the face means less downtime and more money in
of their technology. Innovation is crucial in of modern agriculture.” Steve, in his role your pocket.
today’s marketplace, and technology stands as manager of the new Grand Island store,
at the front of innovation. As Vollmar com-
mented, “Keeping up with the technology
and employee training of the modern truck is
the future.” The truck of the future will be an
even more complex piece of machinery than
it is now, and will require knowledge that
is only just now emerging. This requires a
huge investment of time and money, but even
more importantly, it requires vision to believe
in the value of technology and it requires
planning to accommodate to the inevitable
changes that technology will bring. Compa-
nies that are innovative are looking beyond
current practice and are already preparing
for the emerging market. Garafola, who
spends a good part of his time addressing the STEVE TONER, GM INLAND TRUCK PARTS AND SERVICE AND DAVE TAYLOR,
technology issue, affirms this. “Future trends PRESIDENT OF GRAND ISLAND AREA ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT.
nebtrucking.com Issue 2, 2017 - Nebraska Trucker 27
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business, you are getting over 60 years of experience in the trucking industry.
Our agents work with you. Not every insurance agent can represent Great
West. With a keen focus on the trucking industry, our agents are knowledgeable,
dependable, and responsive. They understand your needs and work with you to
match the right coverage and level of service for your trucking operation.
Do one thing, and do it right. Our agents can guide you through the process and
customize a plan to provide you the broadest protection possible. You can also feel
confident knowing that our agents’ service begins, not ends, with the issuance of
GREAT WEST CASUALTY COMPANY – No matter where the road takes you, you
will discover that at Great West, The Difference is Service®.
28 Nebraska Trucker - Issue 2, 2017 nebtrucking.com