Women have been making waves in the truck driving industry for decades. This year, Ellen Voie who founded the Women in Trucking Association (WIT) was awarded the prestigious Nettie Fowler Champion of Change Award presented by Navistar, Inc., which is responsible for the manufacturing of the commercial truck and engine brand, International.
Nettie Fowler was married to Cyrus McCormick, who founded Navistar. The award was named in her honor and recognizes someone who has taken consistent action in helping women grow and thrive in the transportation industry.
“[Fowler] was a trusted advisor and partner to her husband in financial and legal matters, as well as an advocate for workers and a well-known philanthropist,” according to the news release which announced Voie as the award’s winner. “Recipients of this award are true champions of women and of driving equality, who stand out because they mentor, support, and create opportunities for women.”
After years of partnership between Navistar and WIT, it became clear that Voie is dedicated to the advancement of women in the industry and was well-deserving of such recognition. Nicole Wiggins, Navistar’s chief diversity officer and co-creator of the Nettie Fowler Award, saw Voie’s hard work first-hand.
“Ellen embodies everything the award stands for,” Wiggins said. “During her years as president of WIT, she has demonstrated tireless dedication to the advancement of women in the trucking industry. Ellen has stayed motivated and passionate about her mission. Every milestone she has reached, she has not become complacent, yet continues to advocate for the inclusion and equity of women in the industry.”
Voie founded WIT in 2007 and has held the roles of both president and chief executive officer. Under her leadership, the organization has grown to include over 8,000 members. This growth was achieved through initiatives including the WIT Index, which has become the industry’s tool for measuring the percentage of women who are employed in critical roles in the industry, according to the news release that announced Voie as the Nettie Fowler Award recipient.
Voie’s influence in transportation has extended far beyond the scope of WIT. She has served on several notable committees including an appointment to Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s Advisory Committee and the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Entry-Level Driver Advisory Committee. Her efforts have been recognized on a national level with Voie being named a Transportation Innovator Champion of Change by the White House.
Source: The Trucker