Women In Trucking announces its March 2021 Member of the Month
The Women In Trucking Association (WIT) has announced Liz Imel as its March Member of the Month. She is an Over-the-Road (OTR) professional driver for Maverick Transportation out of Little Rock, Ark.
Imel grew up on a farm and started driving tractors when she was just five years old. Her neighbor was a grain hauler. As a teenager, she earned money by washing his bicentennial painted long nose Pete every Saturday. This was the start of her love for big trucks.
After working seven years in a farm repair shop, she went on to work at a hardware manufacturer. There, she started out on the packaging line and worked her way up to the machine setup. She continued to advance in the company to a press operator and then assistant foreman. After 13 years with the company, they closed due to foreign trade.
The company’s closure was just the beginning of Imel’s professional truck-driving career. As a severance, she was given money for continuing education. With her oldest daughter out of school and her youngest almost out of high school, she thought, “this is my chance!” Imel started truck driving school at her local community college to earn her CDL.
Imel has been with Maverick Transportation as an OTR driver for over eight years. The first seven years with the company, she pulled refrigerated foods. Now, she is pulling boats and loves it. “Unloading is a great workout. I also love that I get to go all over the United States,” she said.
Maverick has recognized Imel for her high level of customer service and commitment to safety by selecting her as Driver of the Month in October 2014 and February 2019. In fact, she was also selected as the 2019 Driver of the Year for the company, which was a great honor.
As Imel reflects back on this past year and dealing with the pandemic, she is optimistic about the image of the trucking industry. “One good thing that came out of this pandemic, is that the general public has a newfound respect for professional truck drivers. I challenge every driver to maintain and keep that respect by being true professionals out there—while driving and parked!” she said.
Imel also encourages women to join the industry. “This is a great career if you are self-motivated and have a driven personality. If you are able to make split-second decisions, are kind to others, and keep a smile on your face, this is a good career for you,” she said.