12 • THURSDAY,
July 11, 2019
NICOLA VALLEY NEWS SCHOOL DISTRICT 58
Merritt driver named best in B.C. Dara Hill THE MERRITT HERALD
School District staff say he tends to try and avoid the spotlight, but this week Merritt’s own Thom Douglas will stand centre stage to receive his driver of the year award in Harrison Hot Springs. Photo contributed
It has been more than 30 years since Thom Douglas started driving kids to and from school in the Nicola Valley, but he still comes to work with a smile on his face every day. His joyful demeanor is just one of reasons why he’s been named B.C.’s driver of the year by the Association of School Transportation Services of BC (ASTSBC), said School District 58 maintenance clerk Melissa Robinson. “He’s more than a bus driver, he is an individual who has earned the respect from the parents who trust his skills to transport their kids to and from school
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on a daily basis,” said Robinson. Douglas will head to Harrison Hot Springs this week for a wellearned vacation, learning opportunities and a ceremony where he’ll receive his award.
“Thom has excellent communication skills and always is professional when dealing with any issues,” said Robinson. When discipline is required on the bus, Robinson said Douglas
always treats the situation as a chance to help the student grow. “He’s a compassionate, good-hearted individual,” she said. Nominating Douglas for the award was extra special for Robinson, as
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he drove herself to and from school when she was young. “He was the only bus driver who ever stood out because he was just so friendly and he always made you feel safe on the bus.”
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