Prime Ways | Volume 7 | Issue 2

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We’re hard at work transforming into the next Oasis where we’ll be looking even more fabulous than before. Here’s what you have to look forward to:





KATIE POLLOCK ESTES Editorial Director ETTIE BERNEKING Editor ANNAH CROW Creative Director JAMIE THOMAS Multimedia Editor

Springfield, MO Salt Lake City, UT Pittston, PA





Mary Ellen Chiles, Sonia Guzman, Susan Atteberry Smith, Rae Swan Snobl LOGAN AGUIRRE President/Publisher MEGAN JOHNSON VP of Custom Publishing AMMIE SCOTT VP of Strategy and Senior Account Executive

417-521-3814 (MO) 570-602-4793 (PA) 801-977-5903 (UT)

Use your Prime Reward Points here!





ON THE COVER The team at the new Learning Center in Salt Lake City showed us around for our cover shoot.

PRIME WAYS| |May MARCH Prime Ways 2022 2017

The Highway Diamonds gala was back this year. Turn to p. 24 to learn more.

18 THE 101 ON TRAINERS Prime’s training program is part of Prime’s success. That program is growing, and now Prime needs more trainers.





Thanks to quick thinking and a Nintendo Switch, driver Ty Mauzerolle saved a life.

Prime has a new fitness program that will help you get in shape with just 15 minutes of exercise each day.




28 THE KIDS ARE ALRIGHT IN SLC The new learning center in SLC is ready and open for business, and it’s open to the public for the first time.



Beau McCarter is using the power of walking to honor American heroes.


14 THE FORCE IS STRONG If you love Star Wars or The Mandalorian, you need to see this truck.

Glen Horack had been a finalist for the Truckload Carriers Association Owner Operator of The Year award three times. This year, he finally won.

Photos by Ettie Berneking, Amy Hess, Prime Inc.



Chat These are the numbers and stats from this issue that blew us away and deserve a little extra attention.


Beau McCarter set a goal of going on 100 hikes this year, but that goal has morphed into a much bigger dream. Now, McCarter is gathering with friends and family members of the 13 U.S. soldiers who were killed during the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan and walking in their honor. Turn to p. 9 to learn more.


More than 170 Prime participants signed up for Prime’s first Fit in 15 competition, which launched this past February. Each participant committed to healthful eating and 15 minutes of exercise a day for 15 weeks. Only five weeks into the program, each person had lost about 4.5% of their body weight. Learn more on p. 10.


Prime just launched version 3.16 of its app, and it has all sorts of helpful new features. For starters, associates can now see which new drivers listed them as referrals, which means cash bonuses, so that’s a big perk. The new app also lets you see what each Prime cafe is serving as that day’s special and where trainees are at in their training. There’s a lot happening with the new version of the app, so turn to p. 16 to learn more.

Photo courtesy Prime Inc.


Drissa Samake trained more than 70 Prime Student Drivers last year. That was a new record for Drissa, who is one of many trainers at Prime. As Prime’s training program grows, it’s looking for even more drivers to become trainers. Turn to p. 18 to learn more about the program and how it could put extra cash in your pocket.


down C

ommunity involvement has always been part of the culture at Prime. We have the hardest working and most skillful associates in the industry. Additionally, and perhaps more importantly, our associates have a heart for giving back. Together, we have helped families and communities get through di cult times by providing emotional support, financial support and so much more. Giving back comes in many different forms. From participating in or hosting philanthropic events to investing in the next generation, we all have the ability to make a difference in the community and at Prime. One way Prime associates give back is by participating in the Driver Training & Development Program. We have numerous highly qualified instructors and trainers that help mold the future of our industry. While becoming an instructor or trainer can be profitable for our professional drivers, it takes a servant’s heart to teach—especially to teach the right way. On page 18 of this issue, we hear from a few instructors and trainers who through the Driver Training & Development Program—invest in the next generation of Million Milers. Throughout this feature, we learn about the incredible effort these professional drivers give to our training program and what the training program gives back to them. To all of our outstanding instructors and trainers, thank you for your commitment to the growth of Prime.

Robert Low Prime Inc., C EO & Fou nder PRIME WAYS


LIFE | MAY 2022

Ty Mauzerolle was the first person to arrive at a fatal car accident, and his efforts saved the life of a little boy.


SAVING COREY Ty Mauzerolle recounts the fateful night he pulled a young child from a wreck. BY RAE SWAN SNOBL




t was a beautiful night, clean and dry,” says Ty Mauzerolle, a lease operator and CDL Instructor who’s been with Prime for seven years. Around 9 p.m. on June 4, 2020, Ty was heading west on I-40 just outside of Holbrooke, Arizona, with his student, Leonel Sanchez. A light ahead on the side of the road caught his eye, and as he approached, he realized a car was on fire. Then he noticed another smashed car nearby that was facing tra c. Thinking quickly, Ty came to a stop and positioned his truck so it partially blocked tra c and protected the two vehicles. As it turned out, he was the first person on the scene of a head-on collision. Ty grabbed his fire extinguisher and scanned the wreckage. “The car facing the wrong way did not show signs of life,” he says. “The other vehicle was on fire, and I could hear the screams of a child coming from it.” For a brief moment, Ty made eye contact with the driver of the car that was on fire, but it only lasted a few seconds before the driver suddenly went unconscious. “Looking back, I think he was waiting to make sure someone was there to take care of his son,” Ty says.

Photos by Leah Stiefermann and Ty Mauzerolle

For his heroic efforts, Ty was awarded the Arizona Department of Public Safety Lifesaving Award and the Highway Angel Award from the Truckload Carriers Association. ⊲

The boy in the back of the car was 10-yearold Corey, who was trapped between the roll cage and the seat. Ty’s first priority was putting out the fire in the engine compartment with his fire extinguisher. Soon, another car pulled up on the scene and helped put out the flames. Then, Ty said they should try to get Corey out of the vehicle. “There were no medics there yet, but I was afraid the engine would flare back up and wanted to get him out of there,” Ty says. He worked to pry the bar off Corey’s legs and eventually pulled him from the smoldering car. Ty carried Corey about 20 feet from the wreckage, and placed him on a blanket over the shattered glass. “I sat there with him until state police arrived, and then eventually fire and EMS showed up,” Ty says. As he remembers it, Corey didn’t look too bad at the scene, but he was in a lot of pain. “There was minimal blood, but later we found out that both of his arms ended up being broken, and he had a broken femur and a couple of cracked ribs.” When Corey was too scared to let medics administer pain medication through a shot, Ty made him a deal. “I promised to give him my Nintendo Switch if he would let the medics give him the shot,” Ty says. Corey finally agreed, and Ty sent his co-driver to grab the Nintendo Switch out of the truck. EMS assessed that Corey’s injuries were beyond what they could handle, so they called a life flight helicopter to take him to Flagstaff. Ty waited for more than an hour with Corey while the fire department worked to free Corey’s dad from the car. Tragically, both Corey’s dad and the driver of the other vehicle were pronounced dead at the scene. When Corey was taken into the helicopter, Ty handed the Nintendo Switch and a slip of paper with his contact information to the medic. The Switch made it to Flagstaff, but the slip of paper with Ty’s contact information was lost. About a year later, Ty heard from some friends on Facebook that a woman was looking for a truck driver from York County, Maine, where Ty was living at the time. It turned out to be Corey’s mother, who had used Ty’s registration information on the

“Looking back, I think he was waiting to make sure someone was there to take care of his son.” —Ty Mauzerolle Nintendo Switch to find out where he was from. She was trying to thank him for what he did for Corey. Ty made contact through Facebook and was able to catch up with both Corey and his mother. Ty learned Corey wound up spending three months at Phoenix Children’s hospital after the accident. Corey made a full recovery but has some physical limitations as a result of his injuries. The two stay in touch now, and Ty has sent gifts for Corey’s birthday and Christmas. “I try to give them space,” Ty says. “I don’t want to be the person that

reminds them of the worst day of their lives, but I have sent a new controller, a dock, games and a case for the Switch.” Since the accident, Ty has been recognized by the press and several organizations for rescuing Corey. He received the Arizona Department of Public Safety Lifesaving Award and the Highway Angel Award from the Truckload Carriers Association. “I didn’t do anything that night to get recognition,” Ty says. “I just did it because it was the right thing to do.” PRIME WAYS


An unlikely start to SUCCESS This Prime driver’s success story doesn’t begin like you’d expect. What could have been a major setback wound up driving his future career. BY SUSAN ATTEBERRY SMITH

Lt. col. james “jc” Rose

Prime Service: Inspired by a retired uncle who used to drive for Walmart, JC, who now lives in Kathleen, Georgia, joined Prime more than a year ago as a lease operator. Since then, he says he has had a wonderful time driving his 2022 Freightliner across the United States. The Southern-born driver is as delighted to see snow as he is to see colorful fall foliage. “Believe it or not, I enjoy seeing it all because of the simple fact I’ve deployed all over the world, but I’ve never been all over the United States,” JC says. He brings a Marine’s discipline and motivation to his work—not to mention enthusiasm: “I just love driving,” he says. “I absolutely love picking it up from the shipper and getting it to the receiver because I know that ultimately, it’s going to get to the customer.”

Recently, JC was one of three finalists–and the first Prime driver to become a finalist–in the annual Transition Trucking: Driving for Excellence program. The program is sponsored by Kenworth, the Fastport Trucking Track Mentoring Program and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and it honors U.S. veterans who are also rookie drivers. Now a certified trainer, JC is dreaming of purchasing his own rig and starting a mini fleet of veteran drivers within Prime: “We veterans have this camaraderie of brother-sisterhood,” he says. “We’re all mission-oriented and focus-driven. We understand the discipline it takes to accomplish the mission.” Now, the big question is not if JC will eventually accomplish this new goal he’s set for himself; it’s when.

“You have to earn the title of Marine. It is not given to you.” —Lt. Col. James “JC” Rose



Photos courtesy JC Rose

Military History: Looking back, retired U.S. Marine Corps Lt. Col. James “JC” Rose says oddly enough getting held back in eighth grade put him on a path to future success. It’s not the traditional start to most success stories, but JC is not your traditional guy. When he broke the news about his school struggles to his mom, he says she was obviously disappointed, and she made him tell his friends about his lack of effort in school. That, he says, is what made him reset his actions. “From that day on, I was absolutely focused that I would do good in my life,” he says, “that I would be able to provide for my family.” JC is the third oldest of 11 children from rural east Georgia, and all these years later, he is the father of four children, and he has two grandsons. By all accounts, JC has accomplished what he set out to do. After graduating high school and enlisting in the Marines, JC says he made so many friends and had such a great time in boot camp, he actually missed it when it was over. Of course, boot camp was far from the highlight of his more than 30 years in the military. Starting as an aviation ordnance technician, JC went on to earn the title of sergeant and serve as a drill instructor in Paris Island, South Carolina, where he enjoyed training newly enlisted soldiers and “being an integral part of transitioning civilian recruits into the Marines—the world’s fiercest fighting force. You have to earn the title of Marine. It is not given to you,” he says. Other highlights included doing two tours in Okinawa, Japan, one of which lasted five years. It was while in Japan that JC and his wife, Melissa, raised their children, including three sons who have gone on to serve in the military alongside high school friends they met on base.

words from the field

PASSING IT FORWARD Naomi Brustscher was just named one of the Top Women to Watch in Trucking by the Women in Trucking Association along with Pamela Wilday. Here Naomi reflects on her journey from driver, to trainer, to the only female examiner at Prime.



Photo by Leah Stiefermann, Shutterstock

Photos courtesy JC Rose


nless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve probably noticed that the United States is experiencing a labor shortage. When I came to Prime to get my CDL license and become a driver, I never thought I would become a trainer and especially not an examiner. At the time, I had just left an abusive marriage, my kids were grown, and it seemed like my last chance to provide for myself. Failure wasn’t an option. I needed to prove to myself that I could do it. So I couldn’t have been happier when I earned my CDL and began my career with Prime. At that point, it still hadn’t crossed my mind to become a trainer. I was thrilled to be where I was and have a job I enjoyed and that I knew would last as long as I wanted or needed it. It wasn’t until my former trainer suggested I would be a good fit for the trainer certification program that I even began to consider it. I was still a new driver, and my lack of experience gave me pause, but he insisted I would be great. He reminded me how I ended up there and the difference the training program had made in my life. That’s when I decided to become a certified trainer. I wanted to make the same difference in other people’s lives that he and the training program had made in mine. I became a trainer in 201 , a year after starting at Prime, and my time in that position was so fulfilling. It’s truly a fantastic feeling knowing you’re helping change somebody’s life. I found a unique sense of pride in helping other women from similar situations as myself and getting to be the one to encourage them and watch as they prove to themselves that they can do anything they set their minds to. Seeing the shock and delight in their eyes when they successfully back a trailer up for the first time never gets old. But as fulfilling as being a trainer was, I couldn’t help but think that as much as I enjoyed teaching, it might feel even better to be the one giving the test and handing these individuals their hard-earned license. So about five years into my career as a trainer, I told my boss I had my eyes set on an examiner position. When a place finally opened up, I applied immediately, and when it was eventually offered to me, I was ecstatic. I’m now the only female examiner at Prime, and I’ve given more than 300 exams. I love my job, coworkers and company, and I’m looking forward to whatever comes next on my journey with Prime.


ssociates at the Pittston, Pennsylvania, terminal’s North Star Grille have a treat to look forward to three days a week: sushi. “They’ll be in here by 8 o’clock asking, Is he here yet ’” says Cafe Manager Ruth Jones. The man everyone is referring to is Will Nyo, owner of nearby catering and delivery service Jomei Sushi. Early in 2020, Ruth was trying to bring in new, exciting things to the cafe when she heard Springfield, Missouri’s, North Star Grille served sushi. Soon, customers began to ask for it in Pittston. That’s when she contacted Will. Will serves clients such as schools and local universities, and as far as the kinds of sushi he delivers, that varies. He’s delivered spicy crab, sweet potato, spicy California and more. “We usually run out of it before the day is over,” Ruth says. Will often includes a few surprises as well, such as pork and chicken dumplings or Chinese noodles, which customers love. So what’s next on Ruth’s gourmet wishlist Popcorn.



ong-time Prime associates are probably well aware that F Prime donates to the American Heart Association each year. This February, Prime changed things up a bit. Prime decided to get team members on board, so it hosted a ra e in February. Entries were open to all in-house associates and drivers, and the winner walked away with either a Peloton or a Montague Paratrooper foldable bike. After 30 days, the ra e raised nearly $4,900, and driver Gary Adams was the big winner. “We thought Gary would want the foldable bike,” says Amy Hess, “but as it turns out, both he and his wife already have those bikes! She also drives, so they went with the Peloton instead.” While the ra e only lasted one month, it was part of a larger effort at Prime to increase awareness and participation in Prime’s health and wellness programs. “We want to shine a light on our Driver Health and Fitness Program,” Amy says. “We need to focus on our physical health whether we’re working in a terminal or we’re behind the wheel.” oining Prime’s Heart Walk team is just one way associates can take part. This year’s Heart Walk is une 11, and that 4,900 raised in February will go to the donation Prime makes at Heart Walk. oin the 2022 Southwest Missouri Heart Walk in Springfield by visiting and clicking on Prime Has Heart. PRIME WAYS


week in the life


TRAINER Lisa Muhasky was named a Rookie Driver of the Year in 2021, but she’s already sharing her knowledge of the industry with new Prime Drivers. As a trainer, there’s no normal week, but there are a few things she always focuses on with new students. BY RAE SWAN SNOBL



▲ Lisa

Muhasky is one of Prime’s instructors who help teach new drivers how to stay safe while on the road. She works with new students all the time, and she was named Rookie Driver of the Year in 2021.

of urgency to get them through training fast, test and then schedules the final tests. “It’s so they can get paid.” always sad to see them leave,” she says, “but For the pre-trip training, Lisa walks her I know I’ve got them where they need to be.” students through the full inspection, and then they work on their own. She might be helping one of her students with backing . while others are practicing their pre-trip. When it’s time to work on driving, Lisa starts students out in low tra c industrial areas for one or two days before moving them to the interstate, rural roads and city driving. For backing, she has to sign drivers up for pad times and that availability may dictate when they work on other skills. “We are doing the same thing every day, but I have to be flexible to make it work,” she says. “People learn at different rates, and I have to keep everyone engaged while they work at different paces.” New mandates require all CDL In the midst of training, Lisa is still a instructors to have at least two year’s company driver, which means she has to experience behind the wheel. They work with new student drivers while also must also complete a form saying a making one or two 4 0-mile deliveries each driver is proficient. week. “My truck still needs to make monLisa notes this has not changed her ey, so I’m still making runs while I’m traintechnique. “I already focus on safety,” ing,” she says. “Students drive on my runs she says. “The only difference now is I to gain experience.” When she thinks stuhave to fill out a form.” dents are ready, she gives them a practice


Photo courtesy Lisa Muhasky


yrna (aka Lisa) Muhasky made a midlife career change to trucking when she joined Prime as an OTR driver in 2018, and she hasn’t looked back since. “I enjoy trucking and wish I had done it years ago,” Lisa says. She used to be a paralegal for a district attorney’s o ce in the tra c department, and she says the knowledge she gained about tra c laws and safety prepared her for a future in CDL training. Now she’s passing on all that knowledge and experience to new Prime drivers. In 2020, she became an instructor for Prime and in 2021 was named “Rookie Driver of the Year.” Lisa says she feels like she found her true calling. “I love it,” she says. “My favorite part is watching people learn, grow and overcome their struggles. Getting a CDL can be life changing and I get excited seeing people change their lives.” A typical week for Muhasky is never dull and no two days are the same. She trains up to four drivers at a time over a 1 - to 18-day period out of the Springfield terminal, and she focuses on three areas of proficiency pre-trip inspection, backing and driving. Students have to pass each test before they can take the next exam, and Lisa has to move through instruction quickly and e ciently. “Students are being loaned $200 a week during training, and when hired, they earn $900 a week,” Lisa says. “I typically don’t take days off because there’s a sense

Scan the QR code with your phone camera to support Beau and the Gary Sinise Foundation, which serves veterans, first responders and their families or visit https://bit. ly/3N5oZyT.

close to home

Step by step To honor American soldiers who died in service, this Prime driver is getting out of the truck and hitting the pavement. BY MARY ELLEN CHILES

Photos courtesy Beau McCarter


ver-the-road driver Beau McCarter was trying to teach little life lessons to his young stepdaughter while out on the road. He decided to commit to “100 Hikes Across America” to teach her about kindness and honor heroes that walked before him. Now, he highlights a different cause with each 10 hikes, and he’s scheduled to complete all 100 hikes by September 11, 2022. While Beau was planning an upcoming batch of 10 hikes, he decided to honor American veterans. Then news broke that 13 .S. soldiers had died in the airport bombings in Kabul, Afghanistan, as the U.S. was leading evacuation efforts on August 26, 2021. The news coverage caught the eye of Beau’s stepdaughter, and she suggested he hike in the memory of the 13 soldiers. “You should walk in their footsteps to show that they matter and that we still care,” his stepdaughter said. Running with that idea, Beau began reaching out to the families of the soldiers who were killed. “The first person I reached out to was Elizabeth Holguin,

mother of Lance Cpl. David Lee Espinoza of Rio Bravo, Texas,” Beau says. David’s family told Beau that David wanted to become a Border Patrol agent after military service, but he died at the age of 20 and never got that chance to make that dream come true. “Elizabeth was ecstatic about the idea of walking in David’s footsteps, and we began a wonderful friendship,” Beau says. “She told me all about David, referring to him as My Flakito,’ which means skinny in Spanish. It’s a term of endearment because, although he was skinny, he was extremely strong and fast,” Beau says. “Together, we started the nited 13 Facebook group to unite families and communities of our fallen heroes. It has served as a tribute page to our 13 fallen heroes, as well as a place to organize the nited 13 Hikes Across America.” Why a hike “The short answer,” Beau says “is that it is a way to show that this hero was indeed a real person with real hopes, dreams and aspirations. We can honor our heroes’ sacrifice by walking in their footsteps.”

The hike for David Espinoza took place on February 12, 2022. Beau and others walked about 3 miles around David’s hometown of Rio Bravo, Texas, for the hour-long tribute. “David Lee Espinoza was just a baby when the September 11th attacks took place,” Beau says. “On August 26, 2021, our 13 fallen heroes were trying to evacuate more than 100,000 people. I can tell you after having walked in David Lee Espinoza’s footsteps, I will never forget how humble and dedicated he was.” As a final act of remembrance, Beau is collecting a rock from each of the 13 soldiers’ hometowns and asking relatives of the nited 13 to sign it. He will carry each rock to the summit of Torne Mountain in New York, which hosts the Trail of the Fallen military memorial. He will add the signed rocks to the collection as a final tribute to the nited 13. “They lived together, trained together, and died together,” he says. “I want to symbolically bring them back together.” PRIME WAYS




Fit in 15 It’s time to welcome Prime’s new Driver Health and Fitness liaison and a whole new fitness program for drivers. BY SUSAN ATTEBERRY SMITH




▲ Maria Godfrey is Prime’s new fitness trainer at the Pittston terminal. She also serves as a fitness liaison for drivers.

losing weight. The biggest losers win prizes ranging from fitness watches and pressure cookers to bluetooth scales and blood pressure monitors. The grand prize winner will choose from a Peterbilt semi-fridge, a Powerblock dumbbells and bench setup or a collapsible exercise bike, all items that can be found in the company store. Since the Fit in 1 Program is still new, Maria says driver input is important as the DHF team considers changes that need to be made to the program. “We’re getting the drivers to talk to us more about what they want what’s working, what’s not working,” she says. So far, driver feedback has been largely positive. “Everyone’s really motivated everyone’s really on board,” Maria says. “Everyone’s accountable.” That’s good news because Prime launched a year-round version of Fit in 1 in April, which means drivers can sign up for the program anytime that works for them.

Photo courtesy Shutterstock, Prime Inc.

aria Godfrey brings a unique skill set to her new job as a fitness trainer and Driver Health and Fitness liaison at Prime’s Pittston, Pennsylvania, terminal. When she started working for Prime in January, the Forty Fort, Pennsylvania, native had been a fitness trainer at local gyms for six years and a kindergarten teacher for 20. She was also a dancer.“I was a ballerina my whole life,” she says. Now, Maria draws on her diverse background from wearing ballet shoes to lifting barbells, as she says on the DHF website to help coach drivers in Prime’s new Fit in 1 weight loss competition. The program is a new one for Prime, and it kicked off this past February with 172 Prime members committed to healthful eating and 1 minutes of exercise a day for 15 weeks. “It’s for weight loss, and it’s also for finding a good, sustainable approach to keeping the weight off,” she says of the program. “It’s a challenging life that they live, and they want to keep fit.” On the road, drivers can log into the Prime Mobile app for support from a team including Maria, DHF Coordinator Matt Hancock, Salt Lake City terminal Personal Trainer Matt udy and Registered Dietitian and Nutritionist Rachel Dreher, who helps provide personalized nutrition counseling. In online videos, Prime’s personal trainers lead workouts drivers can do either outside or in the cabs of their trucks. Weights or exercise bands are used for some of the workouts, yet others like lunges, squats and standing push-ups rely only on body weight. “ ou don’t necessarily have to have all the equipment we recommend,” Maria says. Group accountability calls are helping drivers stay on track as they look to the finish line of Fit in 1 this une. Five weeks into the programs, drivers had lost an average of more than 4.5% of their body weight. To encourage the crew to keep up the good work, Prime set aside prizes for engagement as well as


SOUTHWEST BREAKFAST BOWL Ingredients 2-4 eggs Handful of low-fat shredded cheese 2 handfuls of veggies of choice (such as cherry tomatoes, chopped kale, chopped spinach, Southwest salad kit, diced bell peppers, etc.) ½ cup beans of choice (black, pinto, kidney, chickpea) Salsa to taste Mrs. Dash Southwest Chipotle blend to taste

Directions Mix the eggs and seasoning in a bowl. Microwave for 2 minutes. Add veggies and microwave for 1 to 2 minutes.

Try this quick and easy southwest breakfast bowl when on the road. If you have meal ideas, contact Rachel Dreher (right).

You can also throw everything in at once and microwave for 4 to 5 minutes.


THE KEY TO EATING WELL ON THE ROAD Photo courtesy Shutterstock, prime Inc.

Prime’s dietician Rachel Dreher has a fast and truck-friendly meal that’s as delicious as it is easy to make.



t will come as no surprise that keeping up with your health and fitness can be a bit tricky when most of your time is spent driving. That’s where Prime’s Fit in 1 program comes in. Through the program, drivers and Prime associates can work with personal trainers and dieticians like Rachel Dreher to come up with meal plans that meet their needs and their schedule. Rachel actually considered medical school before changing her focus to study dietetics. “I wanted to focus more on root causes because a lot of the time, people’s root issues are nutrition,” she says. After post-graduate work through an Iowa State

distance program, Rachel joined the outpatient nutrition program at Mercy Hospital in Springfield, Missouri. She joined Prime around Thanksgiving 2021. Now, Rachel contributes nutrition content to the Fit in 1 site created by Driver Health and Fitness Coordinator Matt Hancock. It’s a 1 -week program based on working out for 15 minutes a day and includes weekly accountability calls with the Prime Driver Health and Fitness team. Rachel says she relies on drivers for ideas on practical and healthful eating. “Everything is tailored to what drivers tell me works for them,” she says. For instance, since drivers have limited space, Rachel is

▲ Rachel Dreher is Prime’s in-house dietician, and she helps drivers create meal plans and recipes they can enjoy on the road.

creating simple, healthful recipes that can be prepped before getting on the road or that don’t require much prepwork. One of her favorite recipes is a Southwest bowl. It’s a versatile and healthy dish that drivers can easily change with bold new flavors and an optional spicy kick. “Those are really good because you get a good combination of protein and veggies and healthful complex carbs,” she says. “It’s really easy to change around to whatever your preferences are.” So happy cooking, and drive safe PRIME WAYS


ai16109927809_primedforlifeprimeways21.pdf 1 1/18/2021 11:59:41 AM

Mental Health









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Learn more:


how we roll

THE FORCE IS STRONG WITH THIS ONE Jonathan Adams’ new truck design uses a bad guy to bring positivity to the trucking profession. BY RAE SWAN SNOBL


y wife calls it the $5,000 sticker,” says operator onathan Adams about the full reflective wrap featuring Boba Fett on his 2022 Freightliner Cascadia. “I have always been a huge Star Wars nerd and a fan of the bad guys,” Jonathan says. With the conclusion of The Mandalorian and the new Book of Boba Fett series coming out on Disney Plus, Jonathan chose a timely and popular design for his new A.C.E. lease. Needless to say, it is already getting a whole lot of attention. “I noticed no one was representing the bounty hunter on any truck, let alone at Prime, so I pounced on the idea,” he says. onathan worked with Stripes and Stuff in Springfield, Missouri, to come up with a design that would get Prime’s approval. “The more you look at the artwork, the more you find hidden gems in the wrap,” he says. “The best part is, in the evening, the wrap glows when



lights hit the paint job.” The driver and passenger sides have famous quotes from Boba Fett. The driver’s side reads: “He’s no good to me dead,” from Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back. “That’s a gentle reminder to myself every time I get in the truck to be safe out there,” onathan says. On the passenger side, there’s a quote from The Mandalorian that reads, “I’m just a simple man making my way through the galaxy like my father before me.” onathan chose that quote in honor of his father. Now that he’s got the new truck with its Star Warsthemed design, Jonathan has noticed a shift in people’s reactions on the road. “There is so much negativity toward truckers, but now people are coming up to me smiling, honking at me, and asking to take photos of the truck,” he says. “I will always have a wrap on my truck just so I can bring positivity to the profession.”


Each side of Jonathan’s truck features a different design from The Mandalorian and The Book of Boba Fett and a different quote. One quote reminds him to stay safe on the road while the other is in honor of Jonathan’s father.


When Jonathan Adams ordered his new 2022 Freightliner Cascadia, he knew he wanted all the extras like level 3 seats, a digital dash, LED lights and disc brakes. He also knew he wanted to give it an awesome design. To create his Star Wars-themed wrap, he worked with Stripes and Stuff in Springfield, Missouri.


Photos by Amy Hess

For the hood design, Jonathan added a huge Mythosaur red skull to show Boba Fett’s clan icon, which shows up on the character’s armor.



When Prime was running low on foam and supply chains were tight, the Prime team found a creative way to load up on what was needed.


THINking outside the box When a shortage of parts threatened to delay deliveries, this Prime team found an unusual solution. BY MARY ELLEN CHILES


ike many other companies, Prime is “We’re not going to be the ones that hesitate. dealing with supply chain shortages. We’re going to capture what we can when But while contractors can push back available.” A good example of this hapcompletion dates, and other businesses can pened last year when Prime suddenly found alert customers to delays, delayed deliveries itself facing a shortage of foam—a key item are not an option for Prime. To keep freight in the refrigeration fleet. “The fact that we on schedule and trucks in working order, get to do almost all repairs on our trailers Prime associates including National Parts in-house is amazing,” Jordan says. “But as Manager ordan Silva have had to come up the nation’s largest refrigerated fleet, we with some creative ways to help out. use foam daily, and suddenly we were out.” The problem ordan and his team are That’s when ordan and the team got running into is this—parts for trucks are resourceful. “We had a guy in the Chicago no longer readily available. “As simple as it area travel to each Menards store and purwas before to call somebody in to get a new chase every piece of foam he could buy,” filter, that’s not available at the moment,” Jordan says. “He spent about a month he says. While Jordan and the Prime team loading up a trailer, and then we moved all can’t manufacture the parts they need, and that product down to Springfield. And then they can’t always find them, they’ve come from Springfield, we dispersed it to Prime up with a simple but effective workaround. terminals.” “We start planning for months of inventory An operation like this takes a team effort rather than a couple of days,” Jordan says. to say the least, and Jordan knows there’s He and his team have also expanded their not a single Prime associate who could renetwork of suppliers, and they stay ready to solve the shortage of parts by themselves. buy enough material and equipment to last. “I’m absolutely proud of the associates and This is when having a good relationship how they’ve responded to this time,” he with vendors definitely helps. says. “We want to make sure we’re at full “To ensure we have all the parts needed capacity, and we want to make sure our to keep trucks on the road, we’re willing to drivers are on the road.” To do that, everyaggressively purchase all of it,” ordan says. one has to start thinking creatively.



BY ETTIE BERNEKING Prime has been busy updating its app and website. If you use Prime’s mobile app, you’ve probably noticed a new addition. “We now have a page called My Referrals in MyPrime where you can see all of the drivers who have put you down as the person who referred them to Prime,” says Brianne Madura. “Referrals are the best way we have found to add to our fleet, and referrals can earn you some extra money and quite a few bonuses.” Now, if a Prime associate logs in to the My Referrals page, they can see earnings by previous week, current month and lifetime. They can also see each referee’s breakdown and status. Another helpful addition to the website and My Prime app is geared to make life easier for drivers who do PSD training. Drivers can now find a PSD progress section with electronic student skill evaluations. Instructors can view currently assigned students and complete the assessment for each student as they work toward obtaining their CDL. And if you’re just wanting to know what’s being served in the nearest Prime cafe, there’s an update for that, too. “By popular demand, we added information about daily specials from each of the three main Daily Cafés to the Information section of MyPrime and in Macro #22 from the app,” Brianne says. Finally, Prime just released version 3.16 of its app, so make sure you check your app store for this latest update as it has some great new features and quite a few fixes for issues reported on Android and iOS devices.

Photo by Amy Hess and courtesy Prime Inc.


If you use Prime’s mobile app, there are some new upgrades you’re going to want to know about.

tech update

Operation upgrade

Prime is spending a lot of time and effort updating its operating system, but if things go according to plan, all that work will pay off big time. BY ETTIE BERNEKING

Photo courtesy Prime Inc.


i g things are happening at Prime, but chances are, most of the Prime team won’t notice. That’s a good thing because the action is happening behind the scenes as Prime works on rolling out new Transportation Management System TMS software. The new TMS is still being developed, and Prime is currently working on its Brokerage offering, which will go live later this year. This will be followed by the Intermodal offering, and that will be followed by the Asset offering. In the eyes of Rodney Rader, director of technology, the phased-in approach of different offerings will be critical to ensure support of current and future features. “We operate right now with a highly customized TMS software that’s been around for over 30 years,” Rodney says. “We’ve done a great job enhancing it during that time, but it doesn’t present the information

in the manner that younger users are familiar with. So several years ago, we started utilizing a similar product for our Intermodal offering, followed by moving our Brokerage offering to that platform. But that platform couldn’t support our Asset offering, and scalability was also a concern.” That’s when Prime began a search for a platform that could service all of its offerings including brokerage, intermodal, logistics, reefer assets, tanker assets… all of it. While Prime was on the hunt for a TMS provider that could handle the load, one company reached out to Prime—Mastery. Mastery offers a cloud-based transportation management system, and Rodney says when it approached Prime, its primary expertise was in brokerage. That has been a plus for Prime, and it means Prime has the ability to work directly with Mastery to build a TMS that can meet Prime’s needs.

“We are really partnering with Mastery on this,” Rodney says. For instance, Prime is taking its existing TMS development for intermodal and asset, which Rodney says has matured over many years, and it’s showing Mastery some of what Rodney considers a part of the “secret sauce that allows Prime to be who we are.” The new TMS will eventually help all Prime associates, and one of the hopes is that the program will improve communicating with customers. In the meantime, Prime and Mastery are working on spotting gaps between Prime’s current offerings and what Mastery can offer. “It’s all about looking for e ciencies and figuring out how we can utilize a new TMS to better utilize all of our assets,” Rodney says. “A truck is an asset, a driver is an asset, a fleet manager is an asset, so how do we use all of those the best way possible?” PRIME WAYS


The Hunt



Prime Trainers

Part of Prime’s secret to success is its training program, but to keep up with growth in freight, Prime needs more trainers. BY MARY ELLEN CHILES



⊳ Prime has a driver training program to ensure new drivers are trained by the best.

“The growth of Prime is our driver training program. Not every company can do this.” -Stan Kasterke

Photos courtesy Prime Inc.


tan Kasterke is the manager of the driver training program at Prime—and he’s looking for help. Specifically, he’s looking for more

trainers. ”The more people we can train and the more trucks we have, the more freight we can haul,” he says. “It helps keep our trucks filled, plus it’s the growth of our company. Last year we added 300 trucks to the fleet.” What Stan and Prime are looking for are seasoned drivers who are willing to pass on their knowledge to a new generation of Prime drivers. There are two types of trainers at Prime. The first is known as Prime Student Driver trainers, and they need at least two years of CDL driving experience. The second group is known as Train-N-

Trainers, and they just need six months of CDL experience. PSD instructors help brand new drivers prepare for the CDL for about 20 days, according to asterke. They also help introduce new drivers to the trucking life. “My favorite thing to teach is PSD,” says Susan Stageberg, who has been a trainer at Prime for six years. “That’s when you get a brandnew person, and they don’t know anything about your life on the road. ou’re literally building a driver.” Preparing a new driver for the major shift in lifestyle they’re about to experience is no small task. “One of the greatest things of our program is they’re actually learning the lifestyle of trucking,” Stan says. “They’re dealing with customers, dealing

with the motoring public and dealing with dispatch.” It can be a lot, but that’s why PSD instructors are so important. PSD instructor Jason Wirth has been training since December 2020. When his students start getting overwhelmed, he tries to keep things light. “I tell my students sometimes when they’re getting upset to picture the end of the world. Does it look like any of this No, this isn’t the end of the world,” he says. After a new driver has passed their CDL, they then spend a few months with a TNT trainer. “They go out with a trainer who is an over-the-road driver for a minimum of 30,000 miles,” Stan explains. “They’re ready when the trainer feels safe to be able to sleep with them at the wheel.” PRIME WAYS


One benefit of becoming a trainer is the financial perk. “Trainers are able to make more money because they now have a team,” Stan says. “They can haul more, and they can cover more miles as one of our lease operators. They’re making really good money at this point by having a trainee on the truck.” PSDs earn a 2 0 bonus if they pass the CDL on the first try, and their PSD instructor also earns a bonus: lease operators receive 1,47 , and company drivers earn a bonus of 87 . Matthew Damm was one of many Prime drivers who was initially attracted to Prime’s trainer program because of the money. Matthew first started training when his wife was expecting their first child six years ago.“That’s when I really started looking at how to increase my revenue and start training,” he says. Still, as the saying goes, money isn’t everything, and Stan says the drivers who do the best as trainers have a real passion for the job. “Money will only satisfy so much,” he says. “The people who have a passion for seeing trainees succeed are the ones that benefit the most.” Stan says it’s Prime’s fleet managers who usually suggest OTR drivers as potential trainers. Once other leaders of other Prime departments, including safety, operations, and routing, recommend that driver, they can get trained to become a trainer. Avery Wright was one of those drivers who was recommend to become a trainer. He says he wasn’t sure at first, but a colleague suggested he try it. “I really didn’t have much of an interest at all,” he says, “but my fleet manager said, I need more Averys on the road.’ I talked to my wife about it, and I figured I’d give it a try.”



Now he loves it. “I’m very passionate about what I do,” he says. “I just want to help make other drivers safer, more effective and e cient and be profitable in their career choice and hopefully find a longterm home at Prime.” Along with being enthusiastic about training, Stan says drivers must also be responsible and safety-conscious so they can teach trainees proper procedures. “We don’t want them to have had any preventable accidents,” he says. “They’re going to be teaching our new folks how to be safe drivers. So, someone who’s unsafe is not going to teach them the best way to do it.” In 2021, 9 0 Prime drivers became certified to become PSD instructors and TNT trainers. Another 149 drivers became certified to become TNT trainers. “We can always use more trainers,” Stan says. “The growth of Prime is our driver training program. Not every company can do this.”

▲ Stan Kasterke manages Prime’s driver training program.

Photos courtesy Prime Inc.


s Prime continues to grow, Stan is now searching for more drivers who are ready to help out and train a new crew. Of course, Prime is there to help. Teaching is a skill, and Prime has a program to help trainers succeed. “Instructors and trainers are required to go through a three-day certification process before they can instruct and train,” Stan says. “We’re teaching them how to teach others.”

By the numbers 3



New trainers have to go through three days of training before they take on trainees.

Potential PSD instructors need a minimum of two years of CDL driving experience before they can train.

TNT trainers need six months of CDL driving experience before they can train.




In 2021, 9 0 drivers became PSD instructors, which means they can also be TNT trainers.

In 2021, 149 Prime drivers were certified to be TNT trainers.

PSD instructors earn an 87 bonus when their trainee passes the CDL on the first try.

Finding the right


as a teacher

Driver Matthew Damm has a strategy he uses with his trainees.


fter a 2-year-stint at Prime in the late ’90s, Matthew Damm left to explore other options. He eventually returned in 2010 and hasn’t looked back. He’s driven more than a million miles, and he’s a lease operator. When his family grew he decided to try training. He’s been at it for nearly six years. “My wife had been traveling with me when she got pregnant with our miracle child that wasn’t ever supposed to happen,” Matthew says. “Then I was on the road by myself. That’s when I really started looking at how to increase my revenue and start training.”

But it isn’t all about the money. “Some students are gifted, and they can do it without really any help,” he says “That’s what makes my life easy. But the ones who are struggling and then make it, you’re really proud of those students. Everyone learns differently, so as an instructor you try to figure out where they’re at, and learn how they learn. Everybody’s seen a truck on the highway, but that’s a whole lot different than really understanding the industry.” Matthew says one of the things he’s had to learn as a trainer is the balance between helping his students learn and letting them figure it out on their own.

“ ou want to teach but you’ve got to leave them to do it on their own to an extent, too,” he says. “It’s not like you walk away, but they have to own it themselves. They have to learn it at some point.” It’s not easy to let a student fail sometimes, but Matthew says it’s worth it in the end. He says around 90% of his students pass the CDL on the first try. “It’s kind of cool to see them go from never having been in a truck to a couple of weeks later, they’re getting their CDL,” he says. “Then, a couple of months later, they’re driving their own truck.”



Forming a



To help students overcome their fears, trainer Drissa Samake takes time to get to know each student.


rissa Samake has been a PSD instructor since spring of 2019. Last year he trained more than 70 PSD students a new record

tough situation on the road. “A lot of students get nervous,” Drissa says. “It’s our job to assure them and help them through it.” One example is a student of Drissa’s who spoke English as a second language and who was worried that would be a problem. “I said, Well, I mean you came here, so as long as you understand the basics, we’re going to work through it,’” Drissa says. “That is one thing that I’m really proud of. I’ve never had a student that left without having their CDL.”

Photo courtesy Drissa Samake

for him. “When I started, I never thought that I would have been able to train that many,” he says, “but I did put the work in, and it did end up paying off.” Drissa, who is from Mali, West Africa, wanted to help other drivers after he says Prime changed his life. “I started seeing the kind of money that I was making,” he says. “Training was like giving back to the newcomers. I basically

just help them get their CDL. It’s something that can potentially change a lot for them.” One of his secrets to good training having a personal connection. “I’m more engaged with the student because I really want to see them succeed,” Drissa says. “I try to give them the time, and I ask them a lot of questions. ou absolutely have to get to know them before you start working with them and share a truck with them.” Getting to know his students helps Drissa understand what makes them nervous on the road. Once he understands that, he can help assure them and walk them through a



The rise of



As more women join Prime, more of them are becoming trainers, and that is good news for the industry. Meet two of those women and learn how they’re making an impact on Prime’s training program and Highway Diamonds.

susan stageBerg

desiree mickle

Years she has trained: 6

Years she has trained: 1

usan Stageberg has been at Prime for seven years six of them as a trainer. After teaching English in China for two years, she was eager to keep helping students. Her brother suggested driving, knowing she liked variety. She quickly caught on, then decided to try training. “I like to teach so I thought it would be a good connector because I really liked driving,” she says. Susan is certified to teach PSD and TNT trainees. She likes seeing her students grow into drivers. “ ou get to teach them everything they need to know and then watch them succeed at it and then they get their own trucks,” she says.

esiree Mickle drove for Prime for about 18 months before she started training. She says it’s an adjustment for the first couple of weeks as the student learns the ropes. “They shadow me for the first day, but the next day, I’ll let them try to gauge where they’re at and where they really need help,” she says. Trainees might start by just driving 100 miles a day, but within the week, they’ve worked up to 300 miles a day. “Everyone starts off unsure and by the end it’s like, Okay. I got this,’” she says.


Photos courtesy Susan Stageberg and Desiree Mickle

Loves training Because: “ ou get to know people really well. ou go to the yard and you see these people and you’re like, yeah, I trained that one, I trained that one.’ It’s a little community.”


Loves training Because: “Every day you can see your student’s eyes just light up because they figure something new out. They’re like, ou told me that I’ll get it and I got it ’”





Photos courtesy Prime Inc.

Shining Bright Like a

diamond This year’s Highway Diamonds winners show how hard work, dedication to safety and relying on the Prime community can truly pay off. BY ETTIE BERNEKING


rime’s Highway Diamonds Gala made a grand return this year. After taking two years off due to COVID, the gala was in full swing in Springfield, Missouri, to honor this year’s two winners. Emily Plummer won the Highway Diamonds Award, and Lisa Miller won the Emerald Award. While everyone in attendance was excited to be back amongst friends, few were more excited than Brooke Mosley, Prime’s female driver liaison. “Our most important part of the Highway Diamonds program is our annual gala,” she says. “It’s when everyone comes together and celebrates our growth, and it creates relationships within our female fleet. That’s so beneficial not just to new ladies but to the ladies who have been drivers for years.” The Highway Diamonds program launched in 2016 after Brooke noticed she was getting a steady flood of emails and calls from new women drivers who wanted to pick her brain for advice. Brooke wasn’t a trainer, but she did teach

orientation classes. “I noticed that women gravitated to me if they had a problem while training,” Brooke says. She mentioned this to Robert Low, and they came up with the idea of creating a Female Driver Liaison. The Highway Diamond Program quickly followed. “Our goal is to recognize women in the industry and create a community for them to support each other,” Brooke says. “Women are the minority in this industry, so they’re going to come across obstacles that they don’t feel comfortable talking about with their male counterparts on the road and in house at Prime.” If numbers could talk, they’d happily report that Highway Diamonds is paying off big time. Each year, Prime sees more women join its fleet of drivers. In 2019, 11.6% of Prime’s drivers were women. In 2021, that number jumped up to 12.8%. At press time, it had moved to 14.1%. That’s more than double the industry average, which is just 7%. “Prime is honored to consistently remain above the national average for female drivers,” Brooke says. “And our gala is one way we can celebrate the hard work these women put in.”





members have shared their workout success stories, photos of their trucks, family milestones and tons of encouragement. That last part is what Emily thinks is most important. “Even for me, there are times when the confidence level goes down,” she says. “That’s when we have to encourage each other. As women out here, you can go through lots of emotions and get discouraged, and it feels like you’re totally alone. But you have a whole community of support. No matter what, you can do this.” That determination, and a few rounds of deep breathing when she gets stressed out, are what have propelled Emily forward in an industry dominated by men. The fact that she’s a minority on the road doesn’t bother her. She was trained by a male driver, and she says there was a lot of benefit from that. When she first trained, she’d never been on the interstate. “It was so scary,” she says. “I was thinking there was no way I could do this, but I had a really good trainer. He was a 20-year driver, and he taught me how to be safe as a woman out here.” He also gave Emily the slogan she still uses today. “Rain, snow, sleet or shine, Emily’s always going to be on time.” More than two decades later, that slogan still rings true. Being trained by a veteran driver is one thing Emily would love to see more of at Prime. “We need some of these veteran women drivers to come talk to the new women coming in,” she says. “We need to do everything we can to keep these women in the industry for the long-term.”

Photo courtesy Dave Mottola


mily Plummer’s hometown is one of those small hamlets in Arkansas that you drive through without even knowing it. “The town name is Luxora, and it’s so small that they had to combine seven towns into one to have enough people for a school,” she says. Growing up, Emily’s town had two main career paths. She says she could have either worked at the local Fruit of the Loom factory or stayed home and had kids. Neither of those sounded exciting, then one day a semi truck pulled into town. “I thought it would be pretty cool to drive,” Emily says. “I thought I’d give it a try, and I’d get to travel the world. That’s how I got here.” Emily has been with Prime for 23 years now, and it’s that experience coupled with her time on Prime’s Driver Advisory board and her perfect on-time-delivery record that helped get her nominated for this year’s Highway Diamonds award. When Highway Diamonds first launched, Emily says she was really interested in the program and kept asking how to get involved. Then she learned that as a woman at Prime, she was already enrolled and had immediate access to the community of women drivers the program was cultivating. Since everyone is spread out across the country, the group stays in touch through a private Facebook group. “If a woman asks a question on the page, there’s a ton of interaction,” Emily says. “We try to give the best advice we can.” As the Facebook group has grown,

▲ Emily Plummer was this year’s Highway DIamond of the Year Award. She was nominated by her dispatcher and has been with Prime for more than 20 years.


Photo courtesy Dave Mottola

isa Miller is two things. She’s an incredibly talented trainer at Prime, and she’s the kind of person who gets along with just about everyone. Her skills and dedication as a trainer are what got her nominated for the Emerald Award winner at this year’s Highway Diamonds gala, and she probably developed her empathy and gift of gab during her 15-year stint as a hairdresser in Branson. Either way, those skills have served her well since she joined Prime more than 10 years ago and as she now participates in Highway Diamonds. Lisa drives for Prime’s refrigerated division, and she joined the business kind of on a whim. “I always loved semi trucks ever since I was little,” she says. Then one day, she got the feeling it was time for a career change, so she packed up her scissors and signed up for truck driving school at Ozarks Technical College. Now, she’s hooked on life on the road. Prime’s Highway Diamonds program didn’t exist when Lisa was training, and the first trainer she had was a male driver. Lisa says it was nothing personal, but she felt uncomfortable on his truck and wasn’t convinced he was showing her the best safety protocols, so she hopped off board and was assigned to a new trainer. This time, it was a woman. “I was placed on Bonnie Fisher’s truck,” Lisa says. Bonnie, who has since passed away, was kind of a legend within Prime’s fleet of women drivers. She was tough, she was patient, she was incredibly knowledgeable, and she taught Lisa everything she needed to know to be safe on the road. “I was almost on the verge of quitting, but she changed my whole world,” Lisa says. “I absolutely loved it. She taught me how to go down mountain roads with a full load. She taught me how to drive around exit ramps safely and how to back up safely. She gave me a lot of great advice I carry with me still.” When Lisa decided to become a trainer herself, she knew it was her chance to pass along everything Bonnie had taught her. “Through all my experiences with my students, I can hear her words coming through me,” Lisa says. As a trainer, Lisa says her No. 1 focus is being patient and helping her students overcome their fears. It could be mountain driving,

▲ Lisa Miller won the Emerald Award at this year’s Highway Diamonds gala.

it could be backing up, it could be being away from home for weeks at a time… no matter what it is, Lisa’s goal is to reduce that stress as much as possible. To date, she’s trained four men and 27 women drivers. She didn’t plan it that way, but she has a special place in her heart for new women drivers. “To me, it’s about acknowledging women in the industry,” she says. “It’s about carrying generations of women behind us who never got an opportunity to drive. Their place was in the passenger seat. It’s a prideful feeling when a woman looks up and sees you and is shocked to see you at the wheel.” The way Lisa sees it, there are plenty of great male trainers at Prime, but training with a fellow woman can have its advantages. “It can be less intimidating,” she says, “and sometimes women feel like they can open up about their fears when they have another woman with them in the truck.” Lisa knows training is not for everyone. It’s hard work, and you have to figure out how to train your students while still operating a profitable truck, but she loves it. She’s still in touch with countless past students, and she’s only missed one Highway Diamonds Gala since it started. She also makes a point of taking her students to every Highway Diamonds event that she can. “It’s amazing to work for a company that acknowledges the growth of women in the industry,” she says. “And it’s great to watch another woman be successful and safe and know you had something to do with that.”

Robert Low spoke at this year’s Highway Diamonds gala, which honored all the women who drive at Prime.





Photos by Ettie Berneking



Prime’s newest learning center is open for business in Salt Lake City, and for the first time, enrollment is open to the general public. BY ETTIE BERNEKING



▲ The Learning Center’s youngest student is just 10 weeks old.

▲ Outdoor play time is part of each day’s schedule when weather allows.




Photos courtesy Ettie Berneking


et’s count the amenities at Prime’s childcare and preschool center out of her home, and she has a BA in family life and human development. She’s Salt Lake City terminal. There’s the Prime store, the even going back to get her master’s degree in early childfull-size basketball court, the gym hood services thanks to Prime. “I always knew I wanted to be a mom,” she says, “but and in-house personal trainer, there are bunk rooms and show- my parents encouraged me to go to college.” Between her ers, there’s a pet washstation and love of children and her years of schooling and training, the spa and salon, and, of course, Karry found her passion taking care of kids. Then when she was ready for a new gig, she posted her resume online there’s the Prime Learning Center. ust like the Springfield learning center, Salt and got a request from Prime. “I thought, ‘hmmm. Lake City’s kid zone caters to kids ages 6 This is interesting,’” she says. “I never expectweeks to 5 years old. But there’s one thing ed to find a learning center inside a trucking company.” that makes Salt Lake City’s Learning When she toured Prime’s Salt Lake faciliCenter a whole lot different from its sisty, any doubts she had melted away. “I sudter location in Springfield the Salt Lake denly really wanted the job,” she says laughCity Learning Center is open to the general public. ing. “It was brand new! I could decorate and The center opened January 7, 2021, just e assemble the furniture. It felt like mine, and as Karry Pineda accepted the role of Director of ▲ K a r r y P i n it felt good to put my own stamp on each room.” When the center opened on January 7, Karry threw the Learning Center. Karry’s background in childcare goes back some 20 years, but she says she never open the doors and welcomed the one little girl who was dreamed her career would take her to a trucking company registered. “She was barely 2, and we hung out all day,” like Prime. But then again, having an in-house childcare Karry says. “It was just the two of us, and to show you how much of a family Prime really is, the security guards here facility isn’t exactly standard in the trucking industry. Before joining Prime, Karry spent eight years working would come bring me food and give me a break during at Head Start an early education and development pro- the day. They knew I was down here alone.” That little act gram that has locations all across the country. After that, of kindness is also how Karry got her second student. One she worked as a coordinator at a high school where she of the security guards had a 3-year-old daughter, and he trained students to be childcare teachers. She also ran a asked if she could join the learning center.

Each classroom at The Learning Center is designed and equipped for a specific age range.

Did you know

Prime associates still get a discounted rate when they enlist their kids at the Prime Learning Center, but even costs for the general public are lower than most childcare rates in Salt Lake City.

Today, the center has 10 kids. The youngest is barely 10 weeks old, and the oldest is 4. “That might not sound like a lot of kids,” Karry says, “but that means we quadrupled in size in just a year.” Karry is also not the only associate at the center. She has two other teachers working alongside her, and her goal is to eventually have 10 teachers that can oversee 66 kids. To reach that number of children, Prime opened the doors of the learning center to the general public in Salt Lake City. Instead of only offering spots to in-house as-

sociates, families from around town can now drop their kids off at Prime. arry says the big news was announced this January, and already kids from outside the Prime family have been registered at the learning center. “Most of these parents live or work about 10 minutes from our location,” she says. “I let parents know that we’re located inside a trucking company, and most have never been on Prime’s campus.” ust like arry on her first day touring the facility, she says every parent she’s shown around is always impressed.

Because the Learning Center caters to a sizable age range, there’s a wide array of skills the teachers here have to focus on.

Large Motor Skills-

For kids ages 2-3, learning new large motor skills like kicking a ball, stretching or dancing is helpful as they learn how to move their bodies.

Photos courtesy Ettie Berneking

Fine Motor Skills-

This is when older children in the center get to practice skills like holding pencils, cutting out paper, writing their names and coloring.

Social Emotional Skills-

Teaching kids how to talk through problems and also express their emotions nonverbally is one of the things Karry loves to work on. “I love watching them develop and grow,” she says. “You get to see the joy in their eyes when something clicks, but it’s also rewarding working with challenging behaviors and helping kids figure out appropriate ways to react. That’s the biggest success because it means we’re getting these kids ready to behave in a school.”

Reading Skills- The learning center at Prime has dedicated spaces for math, crafts, playtime and art projects. It also has a library that’s a dedicated quiet play area. This is a great place for kids to relax and enjoy a new book whether they’re practicing their reading skills on their own or they’re being read to by one of the center’s teachers. PRIME WAYS


Family Ties


A CHARM After three years as a finalist for Operator of the Year, driver Glen Horack finally took home the grand prize. . BY ETTIE BERNEKING



Photos courtesy Prime Inc.


▲ After being a finalist for Driver of The Year four times, Glen Horack (middle) finally won. He accepted the

ack in early March Glen Horack award and the $25,000 prize at Vegas this spring. He and his wife, who drives team with him, plan to use the money to buy a new home in Florida where they love to vacation. and wife, Karla, were vacationing in Florida with friends. Between trips to the beach, the couple was eagerly awaiting an upcoming trip to Vegas where Glen would learn if he had won the years they’ve put in and so on. For Glen, Truckload Carriers Association Owner wheel camper and truly lived life on the Operator of the Year. road. He says the transition was pretty easy. that includes a true love of the industry. He participates in truck driving championThis was the fourth time Glen had been The biggest piece of advice he has for other ships where contestants navigate obstacle a finalist. Each year, some 12,000 drivers couples who drive team with their spouse enter the running, and only three make the is to communicate and stay busy. “My No. courses. “Instead of trying to stay away finals. As he prepped for his fourth trip to 1 piece of advice is to not do it,” he jokes. from an object, you want to get as close as possible to them without hitting them,” he the awards ceremony in Vegas, Glen was “But really, stay busy. It’s when I’m not says. “I’ve won my class three times and stoic. “The guy who won last year was a fi- working that I get unhappy.” been overall champion once.” nalist six times,” he says. “So who knows.” With more than 30 years at Prime, Glen When asked what he would do with the Glen has driven in Prime’s refrigerated definitely likes to be busy. It’s how he 2 ,000 prize awarded to the Operator of division since 1992, and his wife joined him hit his 4 million safe mile mark this year. the ear, he joked and said his plan was on the road in 2009 once the couple’s two When his wife joined him, he made sure to pay off the motorcycle his wife had just kids left home. Before driving as a team, to train her, so he could rest easy knowing purchased. But that has since changed. Glen would call home to check on the fam- his safety record was in good hands. “My At the end of March, Glen stepped on ily when he was in the middle of making reputation is tied to this truck,” he says. stage in Vegas and learned he had in fact a delivery. Work kept him on the road for “In trucking, that’s the only thing I have to won Operator of the ear. Instead of paying eight to 12 weeks at a time. “Sometimes I’d offer.” His reputation and safety record is off that bike, he and his wife plan on putting get to pass through for a night or so, but also part of what he hoped would set him the winnings toward a new home in their that wasn’t very often,” he says. up to be this year’s Owner Operator of the favorite vacation destination—Daytona, Once his wife joined him in the truck, Year. All contestants send in essays talking Florida. Congratulations, Glen! the couple sold their home, bought a fifth about the safe miles they’ve driven, the

View From the road What awe-inspiring landscapes have you seen from behind the wheel? Submit a highresolution photo (usually 500 KB or higher) of your truck to Include your name and caption information about where and when the photo was taken.

Photos courtesy Prime Inc.

▲ Mountain Views Kevin Cavalli sent in this photo of his truck and wrote that he couldn’t resist taking a photo with such a great backdrop. “Prime has allowed my wife and I to drive for a living and still maintain a healthy and happy relationship,” he writes. Both Kevin and his wife were first responders, so Kevin says he knows and values good, safe equipment. “The feeling that Prime cares about its drivers’ safety is second to none in the industry,” he writes. “Thank you!”

▲ Big Green Driver Kenai Epps shot this photo of his truck during a quick break. “Prime definitely changed my life,” he says. “I went from a dead-end retail job to a job that offers me more financial benefits than I’ve ever had. I really enjoy what I do. It’s cool to say I have a job where I travel across this beautiful country.”

▲ Break Time Philip Jacek was waiting to swap tankers at a Qualawash in New Jersey when he took a minute to get this photo of his truck.



Driver Referral Program $100 $500 $500 1/4cpm $1,000 Earn $100 when referred driver hauls first load.

Earn $500 when referred driver stays 30 days.

Earn $500 when referred driver stays 6 months.

Earn ¼ cpm on every mile referred driver runs after 6 months.

Earn $1000 when 3 referred drivers stay 6 months.

Earnings Example: Refer 3 drivers who stay at least 6 months at Prime, and you would earn $4300, not including the additional mileage pay!

Program Rules: The person that is referred must run under Prime’s operating authority (A, B, C, or D Seats) as a company driver or independent contractor. All active Prime Driver Associates under Prime’s operating authority (A, B, and C Seats) are eligible to receive Prime Inc Driver Referral Program pay. To earn bonus at 6 months longevity pay and mileage pay, referred driver must be an A Seat. No driver referral bonus will be earned for referring a rehire (previous Prime Driver). To earn referral, referred driver must list Prime Driver’s name or driver code on online application or be provided to Recruiter prior to processing application for approval. For more information, contact Prime’s Recruiting Department at 888-664-4473. Program is effective as of Nov. 19, 2021, until further notice or cancellation. (Prime reserves the right to modify the program at any time.)