Runnin’ smart, lookin’ sharp
OOIDA members picked for 'Run Smart Pros'

By Greg Grisolano, staff writer

Members of the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association will bring their skills and expertise to the digital world as members of Freightliner’s “Team Run Smart Pros” program.

Developed by Freightliner Trucks, the program provides owner-operators with the opportunity to drive a Freightliner Cascadia truck equipped with a Detroit DD15 engine. The drivers will also blog about their impressions of the trucks and engines, as well as offer tips to other drivers on a range of topics, including keeping operating costs low and staying healthy on the road.

The drivers are Henry Albert, a senior member out of Statesville, NC, as well as members Linda and Bob Caffee, Silex, MO; Jeff Clark, Kewaunee, WI; Jimmy Nevarez, of Yorba Linda, CA; and Joey Slaughter, of Ringgold, VA.

All of the members have distinguished themselves within the trucking industry and represent a diverse cross-section of carriers.

Albert, who owns Albert Transport Inc., hauls general freight primarily on long hauls throughout the U.S. He was recognized as Overdrive Magazine’s 2007 Trucker of the Year, and was part of Freightliner’s “Slice of Life” blog effort.

“It’s an honor to continue with (Freightliner),” he said. “What it started out as was a way to introduce a new product. Since then, it’s become so much more. It’s become a conduit of information, not just from ourselves, but from other drivers we meet.”

Caffee and husband Bob have been team driving for the past eight years. Linda said she believes one of the most important aspects of the program will be highlighting the diversity of the team members.

“We are actually running an expediter straight truck, so we come from a little bit of a different segment than the rest of the guys,” she said. “I thought they did a fantastic job of picking people, not only with different business operations but with the different places we live. … It doesn’t matter what you drive; it has information for everybody. It’s not just about Freightliner; it’s about truck drivers.”

Freightliner Trucks accepted applications from professional drivers to become Team Run Smart Pros, and selected the drivers who had distinguished themselves as industry experts.

“The Team Run Smart Pros were selected based on their amount of knowledge, professionalism and dedication to the industry,” said Mike McHorse, marketing segment manager, on-highway for Freightliner Trucks. “With the addition of these experienced professionals, the Team Run Smart community grows stronger and stands as the definitive guide to helping business-minded drivers succeed and lead healthy lifestyles on the road.” LL