We are proud to announce Ray Hebert has reached his 1.25 Million Mile Milestone with CalArk, but he will be quick to add that he has over 3 million career miles. Ray has also been in trucking for 45 years, starting out when he was only 14 with his cousin and Uncle Pete.
Back in April we told you all about a driver in the CalArk family who had hit his Million Mile Milestone with us. Herbert Wolfe came back in today to pick up his 10 year service award, which included a plaque and a two-tone Seiko watch with the CalArk logo on it. Herbert plans on retiring this coming April after nearly 30 years in the trucking industry.
Brian "Todd" Thompson recently stopped by the Safety Office to pick up his 1 Million Mile ring, jacket, and plaque. Todd has been with CalArk since February of 2011 and is on Michelle Finn’s board. He is from Mead, Oklahoma, the state where he's lived his whole life except for a brief stint in California when he was in his early twenties.
CalArk driver Randal Davidson of Grovetown Georgia, reached two impressive milestones this year. He has logged over 2.5 Million Miles with CalArk and has been moving the Wheels of American Business for 20 years.
It is a true honor to share Allen Robertson's accomplishment with you all. Allen lives in Westland, Michigan, is originally from Richmond, VA, and is on Karen Dennis’ board. He started with CalArk 22 years ago but has been driving big trucks for more than 30 years.
It is bittersweet to be typing these words, but after 10 years and 1.2 Million Miles of Safe driving Jesse Alegría is taking some time off from trucking. He will be greatly missed while he is away, but he promises he is coming back to us at CalArk. It is a commendable reason to take time off; Jesse said his wife of 32 years (as of December 19, 2018), Rosalba, has been patient with him being over the road. With just 2 and 3 days home here and there, Jesse says he owes Rosalba more.
Tim Franklin has logged 2.5 Million Miles with CalArk, and recently celebrated his 20 Year Anniversary as a member of the CalArk Family. When he sat down with CalArk Safety Director, Leslie Stout, to talk about the last 20 years he was beaming over his new blue Peterbilt he was about to move into. He would have been in a new truck sooner, but he wanted to wait on a blue one.
Irish Fuggins has spent 20 years of his total 31 years of driving with CalArk. He drove for other reputable companies in the industry but says CalArk has always treated him nice and he has nothing to complain about.
12 years ago, CalArk's then-Director of Safety, Dennis Hilton, took a chance on him. Chris was ready to get to work driving a commercial motor vehicle, but regulations required him to have a special certificate called an SPE because of his injured right hand. Dennis told him, "We're going to do what we need to so you can drive for us." Dennis then asked the maintenance shop to hire Chris while waiting for his certificate. Two months later, Chris was driving a CalArk truck, and he's been in one ever since.
Larry Smith came in to pick up his 1.5 Million Mile Award and to announce his retirement from CalArk on the same day. Larry has spent the last 11 years of his 41 year driving career with CalArk.
We would like to congratulate Thomas Christmas on his recent achievement of 1.2 Million Miles of safe driving. Thomas started his career in trucking in September of 2006 before coming to CalArk in July of 2009. He is from Belton, Texas and is on Michelle Finn's board. Thomas says being a driver was in the cards for him as his mother, father, two sisters, brother, and cousins have all been truck drivers as well. Before driving, he worked in fast food and retail.
Robert loves that trucking has allowed him to see all 48 states and plans on driving a truck as long as his health allows. Robert encourages new drivers to always "be calm, don’t get excited, and just do your job."
A driver since 1984, Gary Cooper has been with CalArk since 2003. He attributes his success and longevity with one company to his "think with a career attitude" philosophy. He is on Michelle Finn's board but says he has always been taken care of while at CalArk, no matter who his driver manager is.
Tammy Williams started with Central Hauling in 2009 and switched to CalArk in 2015, working on Michelle Finn's board. Prior to becoming a professional driver fifteen years ago, she went to school to become a paralegal but soon decided she could make more money driving. We at CalArk are glad she made the switch!
Christo Salinas, from Penitas, Texas, began driving for CalArk 18 years ago. Former Vice President of Safety Dennis Hilton recruited him after seeing his potential to be a great driver, and Christo was excited to leave a job making minimum wage loading trailers in the heat.
David calls CalArk his home, and takes pride in encouraging other drivers in the industry to make the move to our company. He says CalArk has been fair to him, and he doesn’t feel like a "number." He likes the lanes and says it feels like family here.
We are pleased to present Dwight Walker with his 2 Million Miles Milestone Award. Dwight has driven professionally for 16 years, 14 of them with CalArk. He is from Pine Bluff, AR and is on Michelle Finn’s board. Deronda Wofford, VP of Operations, says Dwight will do anything you ask him to do.
David likes to help his fellow drivers over the road whenever possible, and said if he has one piece of advice to share it would be to always "watch your mirrors" so you can anticipate what other drivers will do and you will have time to react. Given David's great safety performance, it appears always watching his mirrors works!
At CalArk we feel honored that Curtiss continues to share his skills, experience, and incredible work ethic with us, even after hitting his 31-year anniversary last Saturday. Thanks for keeping the wheels of American business turning, Curtiss!
Gabriel Deng has spent seven of his ten years driving with CalArk. A resident of Chelsea, Massachusetts, he's originally from South Sudan and what his manager, Michelle Finn, calls a "go getter." She says he's "probably one of the hardest runners I’ve ever worked with. He is the man to call when you need the impossible to happen."
“Choosing to be a professional driver means choosing to be a safe, defensive driver not only for yourself but for the motoring public around you.”
- Leslie Stout, CDS, Director of Safety, CalArk International
That is why we put great emphasis on safe and defensive driving training here at CalArk. We have a company-wide, top-down understanding of and appreciation for the importance of safety and the impact it has on our company, on our industry, and on the motoring public.
Accident costs go beyond damaged equipment. Accidents affect company reliability and reputation, employee morale, insurance costs, productivity, recruiting, and retention efforts. We recognize the value of being committed to a world-class safety program, and we strive every day to be safer than the day before and to do the right thing because it’s the right thing to do.