Linda Allen, 54, Spring Hill, Fla.
Linda Allen entered the trucking industry 10 years ago during the economic recession when both she and her husband lost their jobs. At the time, her husband knew how to drive a truck so they both got their CDLs, bought a truck and obtained their own authority. Linda says she knew virtually nothing about the industry or the business at that time but then she learned about OOIDA. The staff at OOIDA provided her with the guidance, support and advice to put her on the path to success. Linda would love to be part of the OOIDA board to give back to the organization that gave much to her.
Linda believes that navigating trucking regulations is a difficult process for new drivers. The ELD mandate highlighted the inefficiencies in the hours-of-service regulations – inefficiencies that increased stress levels and created a “ticking” clock that drivers must beat to deliver the load. This can be difficult for experienced drivers but even more so for new drivers. This issue is one that Linda feels particularly passionate about; she traveled to Orlando earlier this year to participate in the FMCSA listening session on hours-of-service reform. Linda communicated her concerns to the agency and her fellow drivers.
Another problem for new drivers is inadequate driver training. Linda says that she got her CDL in two weeks and had never been in a truck prior to the training course. A week in the class, a couple days in the parking lot and a couple more days on the road is not enough time to thoroughly train drivers. Linda was fortunate in that her husband was experienced and could teach her the things a training course did not, but that isn’t the case for thousands of drivers learning to drive today. The current minimal training standards are not enough to produce safe drivers and Linda fully supports OOIDA’s efforts to mandate meaningful training for new entrants.
As a board member, Linda would bring with her a bachelor’s degree in political science. She worked and volunteered as a lobbyist previously in Georgia. She also worked as a state legislative director at a motorcycle organization. Linda says that she enjoys legislation and has extensive experience in grassroots mobilization. Linda is an engaged advocate; she has developed political contacts and relationships through her legislative and lobbying work, and she would love to bring those to OOIDA to help in the fight for truckers.
Linda and her husband currently haul refrigerated freight – ice cream, beef, frozen and dry goods. When not trucking, Linda loves riding motorcycles. In her free time she enjoys lobbying for trucking, veteran, disability and motorcycle issues on both the state and federal levels.