Interview with Allen Smith - Truck Driver Social Media Convention

We recently had the pleasure of interviewing Allen Smith about the 2nd Annual Truck Driver Social Media Convention being held in Kansas City October 27th through the 28th.  This conference is meant for both education and recognition of drivers around the nation.

Q: What first inspired you to start this convention? Was there a specific need or event?

Allen: A few things inspired me to start the First Truck Driver Convention last year. First, drivers have no other event to honor them for their performance and sacrifices. There are moments of recognition, but not a true event to unite them together with the industry and honor them.
The other reason is for drivers to have a chance to gather with others attending, including the speakers, in order to discuss openly their concerns for the industry.

Q: What is the main purpose of the Trucking Social Media conference?

Allen: The main purpose for the Trucking Social Media Convention is to honor professional drivers and discuss the issues openly with those concerned within the industry.

It is an opportunity for drivers and all those concerned, to be informed and educated regarding trucking issues, understanding all sides of the problems at hand.  It is an opportunity for those who believe in honesty, transparency, networking, and communication to be informed and participate in discussions.

Using the power of Social Media and video, it is also a way to create public awareness, creating a more realistic image of the driver, including the adversities and difficulties they face.

Most importantly, it is an opportunity for drivers and their supporters to be a part of the discussions together with a complete open forum Q&A session

Q: What are the most pressing issued that face the trucking industry
that will be discussed?

Allen:
Truck Driver Health
Truck Driver Health Regulations BMI,Sleep Apnea, Medical Waivers
The Truck Driver Shortage
Federal Regulations ( CSA,PSP, HOS, EOBR’s,)
CDL Training
How the Trucking Industry is fighting against the problem of human trafficking
Trucking Employment Law- Truckers Rights
Truck Driver Employment

Q: What are some of the top participators?

Allen: Hope Rivenburg, crusader for Jasons Law and more safe truck parking, will be presenting the “The Jason Rivenburg Making a Difference Award”  GoTruckStop.com will be awarding the prizes to the winner of the award, Kari Fisher, of the Missing Truck Driver Alert Network.

James McCormack of Trucking Careers of America will be available to discuss trucking career opportunities with drivers.

Sponsors will be there honoring professional drivers with prizes.  The Pride in Your Ride Truck Contest judging will be by Dan Harmon of Rigs and Rides Magazine with over $1000.00 in prizes by Cobra Electronics.

The 2nd day will include the Social Media Open forum for those who wish to learn more about the Power of Social Media, whether it be for their business, a cause, or just learning how to monetize a blog.

There are over $5000.00 in prize drawings for drivers by Cobra Electronics

David Shumate of BlingMasterTv.com will be doing the video for the event.

Bronze Sponsor Kathy Cass, a truckers wife, who is creating all the centerpieces for the convention

We consider all attending participators. We encourage those attending to be a part of it all by way of the open forum discussions and networking with one another.

Event Schedule
http://www.truckingsocialmedia.com/event_schedule.html

Q: How can people sign up and attend the conference?

Allen: People can register on the website. Registration links are on many of the pages. The main Registration is : http://www.truckingsocialmedia.com/2012_Registration/index.html .  For those who do not have a debit or credit card, they can call us at 352-505-8162

Included in the ticket registration is:

• 4 buffets and refreshments
• Speaker Presentations
• Driver Open Forums to Speak about industry issues
• Free Truck Parking
• $5000.00 Cobra Prize-Give-Aways to drivers
• FREE Truck Entry to “Pride in Your Ride” Contest

Q: Can you tell us a little about the speakers you have lined up?

Allen: Our Speakers are:

Elaine Papp- FMCSA RN, MSN COHN-S CM, is the Division Chief of the Office of Medical Programs at the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration in Washington, D.C. Elaine will be discussing the many aspects of the FMCSA medical regulations including various topics such as medical exemptions, waivers, sleep apnea and the National Registry of Certified Medical Examiners.

Chris Voss- He is in the 1100 of the Top Twitter people followed, out of an estimated 60 million daily users, with a combined Twitter following of over 300,000.In January of this year, he was recognized as one of the Top 50 Social Media Power Influencers by Forbes Magazine. Mr. Voss will discuss the facts, myths and benefits of social media and how to incorporate social media toward your personal and business goals.

Kylla Leeburg, co-founder of Truckers Against Trafficking will discuss the founding principles of their organization: to educate, equip, empower and unite members of the trucking and travel plaza industry to combat domestic sex trafficking.

Paul Taylor  Attorney Paul Taylor of the Truckers Justice Center is an expert in trucking employment law and has been assisting drivers for over 20 years through his law office at Taylor & Associates, Ltd. By popular demand, Mr. Taylor returns as our guest speaker to continue further discussion on the legal rights of professional truck drivers.

Richard Wilson-  Regulatory expert, Richard Wilson of Trans Products & Trans Services returns for the 2nd Annual Convention to discuss the problems and solutions for CDL training and the truck driver shortage within the U.S. trucking industry. Mr. Wilson will also be available for discussion on EOBR's, speed limiters and various other topics of industry concern.

Rick Ash With 26 years as a professional driver, Rick Ash is Chairman of the Trucking Solutions Group.  In 2010, they formed the sub-group, Driver Health Council.  He was a speaker at the first International Conference on Commercial Driver Health and Wellness in Baltimore, Md., presenting topics relating to the health challenges facing owner-operators.  Mr. Ash will speak on the health issues faced by professional truck drivers and steps that can be taken to lead to a healthier lifestyle.

Q:  What excites you most about the future of the trucking industry?

Allen: More honesty, transparency and communication between drivers, carriers, and the federal government.

Q: What other areas of driver advocacy are you involved in?

Allen: I initially began by educating and informing new drivers, students, and those looking at a career in trucking. We are involved with the concerns of human trafficking and support Truckers Against Trafficking.

We also are very concerned about the lack of standards within the trucking industry in regards to CDL training, both within the schools and carriers.  

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