KISSIMMEE, Fla. — The Truckload Carriers Association (TCA) has named Don Lewis and Kevin Kocmich as winners of its 2019 Driver of the Year contests.
Lewis, who lives in Republic, Missouri, and drives for Wilson Logistics of Springfield, Missouri, was named Company Driver of the Year.
Kocmich, who lives in Litchfield, Minnesota, and is leased to Diamond Transportation System of Racine, Wisconsin, was named Owner-Operator of the Year.
Both drivers received a $25,000 cash prize.
The winners were honored Tuesday night at the closing banquet of TCA’s annual convention.
The annual contests, sponsored by Love’s Travel Stops of Oklahoma City and Cummins Inc. of Columbus, Indiana, recognize the top owner-operators and company drivers in the U.S. and Canada who provide reliable and safe truck transportation in moving the nation’s goods.
In 1976, Lewis started his career as a professional truck driver and today has nearly 6 million accident-free miles, 2.6 million of those with Wilson Logistics. He has received numerous accolades and recognition, and gives back to not only his community, but takes pride in helping other drivers while out on the road, TCA officials said.
“He has dedicated his life to the trucking industry over his four decades of service by remaining safe through 5.7 million miles, training new professional drivers and sacrificing his personal life to remain dedicated to trucking,” said Wilson Logistics’ President and CEO Darrel Wilson. “The simplest word to summarize who Don is as a professional driver and his career is ‘remarkable.’ Don’s personality, professionalism and commitment to safety is to be remarked upon as a true professional company driver.”
Kocmich has been behind the wheel of a truck for more than three decades and has amassed more than 3 million accident-free miles. Aside from his list of accomplishments, he takes pride in being a mentor to new and potential owner-operators at the company, TCA said.
“Kevin is always safe and courteous on the road; he takes the extra time to secure his loads properly, recheck the points of contact and properly measures and scales his loads,” said Diamond Transportation System President Jon Coca. “Not only is he both safe and provides the best service, he’s a great representative. We truly wish we could have 100 owner-operators just like Kevin.”
“To be on this stage tonight, each driver has shown an unwavering focus on safety, professionalism, and leadership both on the road and in their local communities,” said Love’s Travel Stops Vice President of Sales Jon Archard.
“These individuals are all intelligent small business owners, and they also help to keep our roads safe and environment clean. Our communities are all better due to their time and engagement,” said Cummins Vice President of Sales Amy Boerger said of the owner operator finalists.
Each of the runners-up in both categories received checks for $2,500. Those include company drivers Robie Jensen of Fremont Contract Carriers and Randy Kuryk of Bison Transport, and owner-operators Jesse Dennis, leased to Prime Inc., and Robert and Tracy Roth, leased to Erb International Inc.
To learn more about the contests or to nominate a deserving driver, visit www.truckload.org/DOY.
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