Thursday, September 21, 2017

REAL Women in Trucking Inc. to host inaugural trucker conference cruise


Tuesday, August 16, 2016
All interested drivers, professionals within the truck driving industry, and others who encourage and support women truck drivers are invited, stated an RWIT news release.
All interested drivers, professionals within the truck driving industry, and others who encourage and support women truck drivers are invited, stated an RWIT news release.

LAKE WORTH, Fla. — REAL Women in Trucking, Inc. (RWIT) is hosting a conference aboard the Carnival Conquest to unite and honor women in the truck driving industry.

The “Queen of the Road on the High Seas” conference, taking place Sunday, March 26 to Saturday, April 1, 2017, will include education sessions on a broad range of topics, including personal safety, discrimination, sexual harassment and driver health. The agenda also includes a driver advocacy forum, a roundtable discussion and an awards ceremony recognizing women who have overcome obstacles in the truck driving industry.

The six-night cruise will depart from Ft. Lauderdale for the Eastern Caribbean with stops at Grand Turk, Dominican Republic and Nassau.

The conference will provide tools for truck drivers while advancing a voice for RWIT and its members. The sessions will include information on improving technical skills for drivers, promoting advocacy through social media, transitioning company drivers to owner-operators, and more. A forum of truck driver advocates will also discuss issues that affect the industry. Speakers include Allen Smith, host of “Ask the Trucker;” Anne Balay, author of “Steel Closets: Voices of Gay, Lesbian, and Transgender Steelworkers,” a former truck driver and writer of a recent op-ed published in The New York Times, “Long-Haul Sweatshops;” and Christine Gray, Becca Kennedy and Shannon Morris, truck drivers and advocates for the safety and success of women truck drivers.

All interested drivers, professionals within the truck driving industry, and others who encourage and support women truck drivers are invited, stated an RWIT news release. Families or significant others are also welcome. The conference schedule has been planned to allow plenty of leisure time to enjoy cruise activities. For those interested in supporting this important event, sponsorship opportunities are available at five levels with details provided at RWIT Lady Truck Driver Conference.

Nominations for outstanding female truck drivers, the “Queen of the Road” awards, are welcome. Awards will be presented to three outstanding women who have demonstrated dedication and tenacity in their efforts to become professional commercial motor vehicle (CMV) operators. Nominees must either be past or present CMV drivers that fit the REAL criteria, which stands for Reaching Out, Encouraging Others, Achieving Personal Success and Leadership. Nominations will be accepted beginning September 1 with a deadline of November 7.

“This conference is important to our efforts of ‘breaking the silence’ about the treatment of women in the trucking industry.” said Desiree Wood, one of RWIT’s founders. “At the conference, we hope to provide the tools women need to be more successful in their chosen field.  Along with information sessions, participants will have the opportunity to network with fellow drivers. Learning from one another and unifying on important issues is one of our primary goals.”

RWIT was initially formed in 2010 as a 501(c)(6) membership organization by female truckers to protest poor conditions that were not being effectively addressed by the trucking industry. "Queen of the Road on the High Seas" is the organization’s first fundraising event. Proceeds will help establish a 501(c)(3) foundation which will provide a headquarters and facilities with modest truck parking availability for members, scheduled learning conferences and advanced training for entry-level driver training students to develop their skills.

For more information, contact Desiree Wood at 561-232-9170 or info@realwomenintrucking.org, or visit http://www.realwomenintrucking.org/.

The Trucker staff can be reached to comment on this article at editor@thetrucker.com.

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