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PMTA names 2023 Driver of the Year from 12 finalists

PMTA names 2023 Driver of the Year from 12 finalists

The Pennsylvania Motor Truck Association (PMTA) named the 2023 Driver of the Year from 12 Driver of the Month finalists at the Annual Driver of the Year Banquet at the Penn Harris Hotel and Convention Center in Camp Hill, PA. 

Jason Seibert, driver for JVI Group, Inc., was named Driver of the Year after being nominated by his safety management staff. 

Each year, the Safety Management Council (SMC) chooses 12 drivers with exceptional safety records to serve as drivers of the month. Then, with help from the Pennsylvania State Police and event sponsor, Sentry Insurance, a Driver of the Year is selected and recognized for their outstanding achievement in highway safety. 

All 12 of the award winning drivers embody the dedication, leadership, positivity and unwavering commitment to safety exemplifying the mission of the Safety Management Council.

January - Gary Furman, Ward Transport & Logistics

Gary Furman, from New Alexandria, has been a professional truck driver for 46 years, logged more than 4.3 million miles and only ever been in one crash. He is the first driver in Ward Trucking history to receive the 40-year Safe Driving Award.This is his fourth time being named a PMTA Driver of the Month.

“Gary is a very dedicated Ward driver,” said Paul Bracken, manager of safety at Ward Trucking. “He never complains, just does his job safely.”

When he’s not at work, Gary is the director and life member of theSalem Gun Club of New Alexandria, PA and mentors in the PA State Mentored Youth Hunting Program. He enjoys spending time with his wife, Pam, sons Gary Jr. (who is also a driver for Ward) and Ben, and his four grandchildren.

February - Timothy Snyder, Klapec Trucking Co. 

Timothy Snyder, from Franklin, has been driving professionally since 1987 and has been with Klapec since 1996. In that time he has driven more than 1.5 million miles and in 2021 received a 24-years of Safe Driving Award from KTC and a 25-years of Accident Free Award from KTC. He is an active part of the KTC Safety Committee. “The dispatchers say Tim always comes to work with a positive attitude,” said Dean Summerville, Safety Director at Klapec Trucking. “He has exceptional attention to detail and helps fellow drivers with their loads and directions.” In his free time Tim enjoys hunting, golf and spending time with his fiancé, Kim, and kids, Matt and Jamie.

March - Samuel Sommers, Klapec Trucking Co.

Samuel Sommers, of Franklin, has been a professional driver since 2008 and has logged more than 1 million miles. In that time, he’s won an 11-year Safe Driving Award and an 11-year Safe Working Award from Klapec Trucking. He’s served on KTC’s Safety Committee for several years. “Sam is always friendly and professional with the other drivers and customers and is always willing to go out of his way to help others,” said Dean Summerville, KTC Safety Director. Sam enjoys walking, reading and spending time with his wife, Suzanne, five children and five grandchildren.

April - Thomas Richardson, Ward Transport & Logistics

Thomas Richardson, of Gibbstown, has been a professional driver since 1979 and has been with Ward Transport & Logistics since 1987. In his 43 years on the road he’s logged more than 1 million miles and only ever been involved in one crash. He’s earned awards for 5, 10, 15 and 20 Years of Safe Driving. “Tom is an outstanding employee,” said Paul Bracken, Safety MNL for Ward. “He comes in early, around 5:30 am, works the dock and then runs a very busy route in Landsdale, PA.” Tom and his wife, Cindy, have two kids, Jacqueline and Ryan. Tom enjoys spending time in the Pocono Mountains.

May - Mark Wilkinson, Pitt Ohio

Mark Wilkinson, of Phoenixville, has been behind the wheel since 1985 and has spent all but one of those years with Pitt Ohio. In his time on the road, Mark has traveled over 2.7 million miles and only been involved in one preventable crash. He received a 34-year Safe Driving Award from Pitt Ohio Express. “Mark Wilkinson has been a valuable member of the Pitt Ohio family for 37-years,” said Mark’s Terminal Manager Greg Kulp. “He is a dedicated and loyal employee, always having an upbeat attitude. Mark takes great pride in servicing and taking care of our customers.” Mark has always been physically active. He enjoys golf, dirt track racing, Nascar, and spending time on the beach and in the mountains.

June - Jason Fake, S&H Express Inc.

Jason Fake, of York, has been a professional driver since 1997 and has logged more than 2.8 million miles in his career. He’s worked for S&H Express since 2004. Jason regularly receives monthly safety bonuses and actively participates in safety meetings. He’s driven through every U.S. state except North Dakota, Alaska and Hawaii. Jason services one of S&H’s tougher runs through NYC/Long Island. “Jason is a hardworking, reliable driver,“ said his dispatcher Tina Bailey. ”Jason once brought a calf to visit the maintenance shop. Why? Because a co-worker loves cows!” Jason and his wife, April, have two children and are active in their church and community. Jason volunteers at Pleasant View Food Bank and serves his church as a deacon, choir member and greeter.

July - Todd Humes, FedEx Freight, Inc. 

Todd Humes, of Huntingdon, has been a professional driver for 30 years and has been with FedEx since 1992. He’s driven over 7 million miles in his career, 4 million of those with FedEx. In 2011, Todd won the President’s Safety Award. In 2017, he won the Master President’s Safety Award. In 2022, Todd achieved the 30-year Safe Driver Award. “Mr. Humes is very passionate about the trucking industry and the importance of being a safe and courteous driver,” said Michael Dare, Safety Advisor with FedEx Freight. “Mr. Humes has mentored young drivers and been a tremendous influence.” In his free time, Todd enjoys hunting, fishing and riding his motorcycle.

August - Danny Diehl, Ward Transport & Logistics

Danny Diehl, of Altoona, has been driving professionally since 1985. He’s been with Ward Trucking since 1988. Over the course of his career, he’s driven 3.5 million miles and never been in a crash. He won the 15-year Safe Driving Award in March 2003, Driver of the Month 2009, an award for driving 3 million miles accident free, and a 35-year Safe Driving Award. “Danny is an excellent, safe driver,” said the staff at Ward. “He has the longest run out of Altoona. The fact of how far he drives and how often is incredible.” Danny spends his free time watching his grandchildren, camping with his RV, hunting and fishing.

September - Jason Seibert, JVI Group, Inc. 

Jason Seibert, from Lewisberry, has been driving professionally since 1996 and has spent the last seven with JVI Group. He has logged more than 3.3 million miles and has never been in a crash. In his 27 years driving professionally, Jason has driven a multitude of vehicle types. His employer calls him “the standard of excellence when it comes to overall job performance, knowledge and camaraderie,” and says he is always ready and willing to help. “Jason assists those in authority by identifying potential hazards, even beyond trucking and provides recommendations to mitigate,” said Sam Elicker, President of JVI Group. “He is being nominated not just for the job, which he does so well, but for the way he selflessly embraces and encourages the goals of others.” Jason talks very highly of his mom, Debra Seibert. He enjoys spending time with her and spends his vacation days taking her on cruises.

October - Daniel Marlatt, Klapec Trucking Co. 

Daniel Marlatt started his professional driving career with Klapec in 2006. Since then, he has driven over 1.7 million miles. Daniel won the 11-year Safe Driving Award from Klapec and an award for working 12-years accident free. “Dan is a great ambassador to our team and the trucking industry,” said Dean Summerville, Safety Director at Klapec Trucking. “He started his career as a driver trainee, completed the KTC finishing program and has become one of KTC’s most successful employees.” Daniel enjoys golf, football, cooking and traveling with his wife, Wendy, and daughters, Rebecca and Rachel.

November - Kalen Herbein, Lester R. Summers, Inc. 

Kalen Herbein, from Adamstown, has been driving professionally since 2010 and has been with Lester R. Summers, Inc. since July 2013. In his career, he has covered more than 850,000 miles. Kalen takes an active role in safety practices and new driver training and is an active member of the Company ESOP Committee. “Kalen has a great attitude,” said Veronica Dale, office manager for Lester R. Summers, Inc. “He enjoys being a driver trainer to train new hires concentrating on proper securement and safe acts.” In his free time, Kalen creates art on cornhole boards, enjoys tattooing, hiking with his dogs, going to the gym and working on cars.

December - Curtis Lilly, Ward Transport & Logistics

Curtis L Lilly, from Bath, has been a professional truck driver for 33 years. He’s worked for Ward Trucking since 1995. In his time on the road, Curtis has logged more than 1.5 million miles and has never been involved in a crash. He’s picked up awards for 20 years of safe driving and 25 years of safe driving. “Curtis never misses work and is always willing to go the extra mile for both Ward’s customers and for Ward itself,” said Robert Dougherty, Regional Safety Manager of Ward Trucking. He enjoys dirt track racing, bass fishing and koi fish. He and his wife, Patricia, have been married for 32 years and have a daughter, Mackenzie. “ My dad is the strongest man I know,” said Mackenzie. “He taught me not just how to drive, but how to do so safely and considerately.

Tom Kintz from Sentry Insurance presented the awards to the 12 Drivers of the Month. 

Chris Henry from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration thanked the drivers for their commitment to highway safety and Dennis McGee hosted a Roundtable event for drivers after the banquet.


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