OTA Dispatch Issue 2, 2022

Oregon Trucking Associations, Inc. Oregon Truck Dispatch LIKE MANY OF you, I’ve been involved in the trucking industry for a long time. A lot of things have changed. A lot of things have stayed the same. While we’ve seen and adapted to new technology, more regulations, social impacts and much more, our industry is often still viewed through the stagnant lens of a 1970s TV show. The fictional world continues to influence the “reality” that the media and public cling to. Drivers are often painted as, at best, a footlooseand-fancy-free vagabond or, at worst, a roaming opportunistic serial killer. I get it—it’s entertaining. As fiction often is. Our true reality is much more complicated, and it’s up to us to tell our own story, but it’s not just telling, it’s showing. I can offer a lot of platitudes about the power of a strong visual. Show, don’t tell. Image is everything. A picture is worth a thousand words. So, what is the picture that you, as an organization, are putting out in the world? What part are you playing in creating the tapestry of Oregon’s trucking industry? OTA provides a lot of ways for us to be part of trucking’s “show-and-tell.” Simply by showing up we become part of our industry’s story. Gatherings the past few years have been challenging, as COVID-19 curbed in-person participation; however, OTA still brought members together. We still recognized our top safety performers. We still named our members of the year and our Image Award winners. Did you submit your people or company for consideration? OTA has forged partnerships with groups that address issues of concern to all of us. One of these is Truckers Against Trafficking (TAT). We may identify human trafficking as a horrible problem. We may even understand that human trafficking is a serious problem in Oregon. OTA and TAT are working together to bring more attention to this crime. As members of the trucking industry, we can be part of the solution. To do so, we have to get involved. Take the TAT training. Have the discussions with your drivers and other employees. OTA can act as our conduit, but we have to do the work. Our ability to show what trucking is made of also exists outside of the industry. In 2021, OTA became more active in the efforts of Wreaths Across America, sponsoring wreaths at Willamette National Cemetery in Portland. Trucking has been involved with this organization since it started, delivering thousands of wreaths to Arlington National Cemetery. Many of us were already sponsoring wreaths at locations in our own communities, but we may not have shared that with OTA or anyone else. Again, it comes down to telling our story, or even just sharing with those around us. This is also true in the role we play in our local communities. In talking to my fellow OTA members, I know that many of you are actively involved in your communities, participating in, or sponsoring events and assisting where needed. While we may not be doing these things to gain attention, and these activities may not fall under the heading of trucking, they are noteworthy and speak to the types of companies and people that make up Oregon’s trucking industry. Our actions tell the story, and we should be proud enough to share those stories. I’m not shy, so let me share some of the ways that the A&M team has served our community—not to brag, but to inspire. My son Ryan is currently chairman of the local school board, president of the local youth baseball association, minors baseball coach, and assistant 4H leader. My safety director Joe Moody coaches the local high school softball team. My nephew Patrick coaches a majors baseball team and volunteers to coach junior high football and basketball. My IT guy Zach coaches several youth soccer teams in the Grants Pass area. Caroline, who is part of dispatch operations, is active in the Cow Creek Valley Community Association, which fundraises year-round to provide fireworks for the community at no cost. They also organize the Easter egg hunt and Halloween parade for the kids. 2 Andy Owens OTA Chair As they say, actions have consequences—but inaction does, as well. Our involvement and our actions create the images that tell our story. The Evolution of Involvement