Women in Trucking Association awards Member of the Month

Each month, the Women in Trucking Association awards a Member of the Month. November 2022’s award was given to United Parcel Service (UPS) feeder driver Raquel Sanchez.

Sanchez’s journey in truck driving officially began in 2011. The Army National Guard offered her the ability to drive a truck for them, according to a news release. Her journey unofficially began when she was a child and watched her father, Jim Sanchez, be a member of the truck driving community. He was employed as a driver for UPS for over 38 years.

Sanchez drove for the military for a total of eight years. She moved on to work in other positions outside of the truck driving industry, but she was never fully contented with the work she was doing. So, she went back to trucks.

In August 2019, Sanchez started her position as a UPS driver. She started in an entry-level position, employed part-time, loading delivery trucks with packages that needed to be shipped and delivered.

She proved her skillset in a short amount of time and was promoted to the position of delivery driver. In February 2022, she started operating a UPS semi-truck.

Sanchez and her father, who originally inspired her career in truck driving, still bond over the career. Recently, they put their name in history books for being the inaugural father-daughter long-haul in the West Coast.

“As someone who is just starting their career, I feel blessed to have my dad by my side as a mentor,” Sanchez said. “In 1997, my dad was on the first experimental UPS sleeper team when I was just seven years old. Who would have thought I would be his partner all these years later?”

In order to have a career in trucking that lasts as long as her father’s, Sanchez realized the need to have a healthy lifestyle behind the wheel. Truck drivers spend a substantial amount of time sitting behind the wheel and possibly picking up unhealthy food options at gas stations and fast-food restaurants. She knows that eating healthy foods and moving is imperative to staying focused in the driver’s seat.

“Staying healthy allows me to keep moving packages from one destination to the next and I know I am doing my part to move the world forward by delivering what matters,” she said.

Sanchez wants to inspire other women to enter the truck driving field, just as her father inspired her.

“More than 70% of goods and services are delivered by trucks and being able to deliver loads on time gives you a sense of self-importance and value and I feel proud of the work I do after completing my last stop of the day,” she said.