Military veteran Quinton Ward, a truck driver with Werner Enterprises, was named the top rookie by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s “Hiring Our Heroes” program.
Ward is a former U.S. Army mechanic, instructor, and career counselor. He received a fully-loaded Kenworth T680 Advantage, equipped with a Paccar MX-13 engine and 76-inch sleeper.
“I chose trucking because it gives me the ability to drive and see the country I swore an oath to protect and defend,” said Ward. “The skills that are key for success in the military are the same that we as drivers use every day. Time management, communication skills, flexibility and problem solving are the cornerstones that make a great employee and a professional driver. I see my future with the industry growing exponentially. I don’t want to stay and just do one thing. I want to see every facet of this industry.”
Ward was injured while on active duty and medically retired in 2010. After undergoing six years of treatment, Ward utilized the VA Vocational Rehabilitation Program to earn his commercial license. He meets with veterans and other service members who are transitioning out of the military, as well as students who are considering working in the trucking industry.
“We appreciate his service to our country, and we look forward to watching Quinton continue to grow as a driver and influencer in the industry,” said Kurt Swihart, who presented the Kenworth T680 Advantage keys to Ward at an event at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. The program is conducted in partnership with FASTPORT.
Stevens Transport’s Christopher Young (Army active duty and now Army reservist), TMC Transport’s Platt Brabner (Navy and Marine veteran), and Summar Hanks of U.S. Xpress (Air Force and Air National Guard veteran), were named runners-up.
Young received $10,000 as the first runner-up, while Brabner and Hanks each received $5,000.