REAL Women in Trucking (RWIT) is hosting a conference aboard the Carnival Conquest from March 26 to April 1, for the purpose of uniting and honoring women in the truck driving industry.
The “Queen of the Road on the High Seas” conference 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 lady truck driver roundtable 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, the 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-operator and much more.
A forum of truck driver advocates will also discuss issues that affect the industry. Notable speakers include Allen Smith, host of Ask the Trucker; Anne Balay, published 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 titled 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. 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 Sept. 1 with a deadline of Nov. 7, 2016.
“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.”