Groendyke driver among new Road Team captains

Jan. 17, 2024
The newly selected 2024-25 America’s Road Team includes Groendyke’s Rodney McNew and 23 other professional drivers who will serve as trucking industry ambassadors

Groendyke Transport driver Rodney McNew is one of 24 professional drivers on American Trucking Associations’ newly selected 2024-25 America’s Road Team.

The elite group of drivers will serve as trucking industry ambassadors during their two-year term, traveling the country to spread the message of safe driving while teaching about the trucking industry and its opportunities.

“Rodney is the company’s first Road Team captain and a shining example of the professionalism exhibited by Groendyke’s drivers and the trucking industry as a whole,” the company said in a social media post. “He will now spend the next two years advocating for the trucking industry through outreach across the country.

“Congratulations, Rodney. We’re all so very proud of the hard work you’ve put in to make it to the pinnacle of trucking.”

Founded in 1986, America’s Road Team is an outstanding group of professional truckers with superior safety records that represents their industry. Captains, with support from their companies, dedicate time each month to attending events, speaking at schools, or meeting with policymakers on behalf of the trucking industry.

The drivers on this this year’s team hail from 14 different states, represent 14 different motor carriers, and have a total of 61.6 million accident-free driving miles, ATA said.

“This elite group of professionals rose to the top of their field through years of hard work, dedication, and an unwavering commitment to safety that is measured in millions of miles,” Chris Spear, ATA president and CEO, said in a news release. “These exceptional individuals embody an essential segment of the American workforce whose contributions are seen and felt by virtually everyone in this country. As these captains now head over the road with a new mission and a vital message to share, we take extreme pride in their achievements and know that our nation will learn many valuable lessons from them and the example they set for our entire industry.” 

America’s Road Team is sponsored by Volvo Trucks. The new captains will tour the country in ATA’s “Interstate One Image Truck,” a Volvo VNL 760, towing an American flag-emblazoned trailer that contains a truck driving simulator and mobile classroom.

“Volvo Trucks is honored to continue our sponsorship of America’s Road Team and take part in this week’s selection of the 2024-25 captains,” said Peter Voorhoeve, Volvo Trucks North America president. “America’s Road Team is one of the most visible groups of professional truck drivers in the country, and we believe their hard work and dedication pays dividends for our industry. We thank the captains for their engagement and passion as ambassadors for this great profession. We congratulate the 2024-25 America’s Road Team Captains and wish them the best of luck as they carry out their mission over the next two years.”

ATA held its final round of selections from January 14-16 at ATA Headquarters in Washington. The drivers were judged on their ability to express their knowledge of the industry, skills in effective communication about safety and transportation, and overall safe-driving record. The panel of judges included trucking executives and trade press.

“America’s Road Team captains embody the professionalism of our industry, helping to promote a positive image by sharing their stories,” ATA COO Sarah Rajtik said. “They are leaders in their communities and role models in their companies. This new class represents everything we strive to promote about our industry and its professionals.”

The 2024-2025 America’s Road Team captains are:

  • Ben Atkinson, ABF Freight System, Florida
  • Willie Baylor, FedEx Freight, Indiana
  • Terry Bennett, ABF Freight System, Florida
  • Perry Carter, Cargo Transporters, North Carolina
  • Damon Evans, United Parcel Service, California
  • Dennis Hall, Tyson Foods, Texas
  • David Hedicker, ABF Freight System, Ohio
  • Lloyd Howell, TCW, Alabama
  • John Lemmons, United Parcel Service, Tennessee
  • Rodney McNew, Groendyke Transport, Texas
  • Michael Middleton, Old Dominion Freight Line, Tennessee
  • Peter Palczynski, Walmart Transportation, Illinois
  • Emily Plummer, Prime Inc., Missouri
  • Wayne Ponschke, United Parcel Service, California
  • Scott Post, FedEx Ground – Spartan Logistics, Minnesota
  • John Antoine Sadler, Walmart Transportation, North Carolina
  • Brian Sheehan, CRST The Transportation Solution, Indiana
  • Molly Shultz, TransLand, Missouri
  • Anthony Tirone, Walmart Transportation, Florida
  • Chevelle Walker, Werner Enterprises, Florida
  • Bernard Wanyo, United Parcel Service, Pennsylvania
  • Michael Whitehead, FedEx Freight, South Dakota
  • James “Gragg” Wilson, United Parcel Service, Nevada
  • David Young, FedEx Freight, North Carolina
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