Hansen sets great example for grandson

May 22, 2017

Mark Schremmer

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OOIDA life member Idella Hansen’s grandson, Brian Hansen, recently started his career as a truck driver. And he has quite the legacy to follow.

Idella Hansen, who hauls for IBI Secured Transport, boasts 48 years of experience and 5 million miles behind the wheel. On Saturday, May 20, she received the TA/Petro Citizen Driver Award, naming the North Little Rock, Ark., Petro location in her honor

She was one of only five recipients in 2017 and one of only 27 since 2014 when TA/Petro began naming truck stops after drivers who earned public respect for the trucking industry through good citizenship, safety, community involvement and leadership.

“Boy, you’ve got some shoes to fill,” she said to tease her 24-year-old grandson.

But don’t let a joke like that fool you. Hansen was extremely humbled to earn such an award.

“They almost had me in tears about three different times,” Hansen said of her ceremony. “They were making me out to be a whole lot more than I really am. It was emotional, and it was probably the biggest thrill of my life besides having my kids.”

Hansen, who lives in Camden, Ark., wrote on Facebook that it was especially thrilling to pay for her fuel and then print out a receipt that said “Idella M. Hansen N. Little Rock Stopping Center.”

And there’s no doubt Hansen earned the honor.

She began driving with her family’s business at 18 years old and served as a pioneer for females in the industry.

Hansen plays a role in a variety of organizations that give back to the trucking industry, including REAL Women in Trucking, Operation Roger, Truckers Christmas Group, Last Ride Home, and others. She also serves as a role model for truck drivers new to the industry.

“I love helping the younger drivers come into the business,” she said. “I like to point them toward the education that’s available to help them avoid mistakes. And if they make a mistake, we help walk them through it and show them how to make better decisions in the future.”

Her grandson couldn’t have asked for a better mentor. LL

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Mark Schremmer, senior editor, joined Land Line in 2015. An award-winning journalist and former assistant news editor at The Topeka Capital-Journal, he brings fresh ideas, solid reporting skills, and more than two decades of journalism experience to our staff.