Transition Trucking announces 2022 semifinalists

October 4, 2022

Land Line Staff

|

Transition Trucking released the semifinalists for this year’s Driving for Excellence award, and, for the first time, all 11 will travel to Washington, D.C., for the award ceremony in December.

In previous years, only the top three finalists attended the announcement ceremony.

“We thought it was worthwhile to do something a little different this year and honor our semi-finalists in a special way – by bringing them all to Washington, D.C.,” Brad Bentley, president of Fastport, said in a news release. “We encourage the trucking industry to reach out to our veterans and help them make a smooth transition back into civilian life. This program is one way to drive that effort.”

The semifinalists for the 2022 award:

  • Sean Adams, a U.S. Navy veteran who drives for McElroy Truck Lines.
  • Jason Van Boxtel, a U.S. Marines veteran who drives for Veriha Trucking.
  • Cale Jensen, a U.S. Air Force and U.S. Army veteran who drives for G. Dubbels Farms Trucking.
  • Ashley Leiva, a U.S. Army veteran who drives for Draco Energy – Noemi Trucking.
  • Paul Gouker, a U.S. Army and National Guard veteran who drives for Stevens Transport.
  • Dave Marihugh, a U.S. Navy veteran who drives for Roehl Transport.
  • Chris McDowell, a U.S. Army and National Guard veteran who drives for Epes Transport.
  • Joe Nyenatee, a U.S. Army veteran who drives for Melton Truck Lines.
  • Talon Rogers, U.S. Army veteran who drives for CRST.
  • Justin Silk, a U.S. Army veteran who drives for Paschall Truck Lines.
  • Michael D. Thomas, a U.S. Marines veteran who drives for Prime Inc.

The winner will get a Kenworth T680 Next Generation. Kenworth previously presented the award winner with a Kenworth T680.

“Kenworth’s continuing participation is a way to thank our military veterans for their service, and to encourage the trucking industry to offer them career opportunities and support,” Genevieve Bekkerus, Kenworth director of marketing, said in the news release. “Congratulations to our 11 drivers who will vie for the Kenworth T680 Next Gen in Washington, D.C.”

A popular vote will take place online from Oct. 28 until Nov. 11. To place your vote, visit TransitionTrucking.org.

Transition Trucking’s Driving for Excellence award is dedicated to finding America’s top rookie military veteran driver.

To qualify, drivers:

  • Must have been active military or member of the National Guard or Reserve, graduated from
  • Professional Truck Driver Institute-certified, National Association of Publicly Funded Truck Driving Schools- or Commercial Vehicle Training Association-member driver training school.
  • Have a valid CDL.
  • Have been first hired in a trucking position between Jan. 1, 2021, and July 31, 2022.

The announcement of this year’s winner is scheduled for Dec. 16 at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. LL

TravelCenters