As the supply of qualified professional truck drivers continues to shrink, motor carriers increasingly are putting "nontraditional" employees, including women, behind the wheel. The nonprofit Women In Trucking Association (WIT) is seizing this opportunity to help more women get involved in "the industry that moves America." WIT encourages the employment of women in the trucking industry, promotes their accomplishments, and works to minimize the obstacles they face.
In March, WIT arranged for American Transportation Research Institute President and COO Rebecca Brewster to ride with female drivers to the Mid-America Trucking Show. Brewster, who spoke at WIT's "Salute to Women Behind the Wheel" event at the show, rode with Stephanie Klang of Con-way Truckload from Marietta, Ga., to Nashville, Tenn., and with Schneider's Monica Abdul-Rashid from Nashville to Louisville, Ky.
A few weeks later at the Transportation Intermediaries Association (TIA) annual conference, WIT announced that it would bestow its inaugural "Distinguished Woman in Logistics" award at the 2015 TIA confab. The award, sponsored by transportation software developer TMW Systems, was created to honor notable women in the field of logistics, a discipline that "overlaps and strongly influences the trucking industry," WIT said. Information about nomination procedures can be found here.
Finally, WIT announced that it would launch a new conference and trade show. The inaugural Accelerate! Conference and Expo will be held Sept. 20-22, 2015, in Dallas. The conference will include a mix of sessions on transportation topics, trends, and professional development issues that will be geared toward women as well as the general population. The concurrent expo will feature suppliers of products and services pertinent to "transportation, workforce, and gender issues," WIT said.