Senior Membership at OOIDA

 

Recently, I got a nice letter from OOIDA. It contained a thank you card, 2 senior member decals for my truck, and a pin. The letter thanked me for being a dues paying member for 10 years. It was a nice gesture. I appreciated it. Many people might think that I am not a loyal OOIDA member. They’re wrong. I want to see OOIDA grow. I don’t believe that it can not grow until it evolves.

 

Recently we had a bit of a dust up between the ATA and OOIDA. Nobody looked good. The ATA was able to arrange an event at the White House. President Trump climbed into a truck. That is a good thing. Unfortunately OOIDA did not have a part in the event. ATA had no obligation to invite OOIDA, but it would have been a good thing. OOIDA was not pleased and I don’t blame them. Then they went too far. They insinuated that the truckers there were not “real” truckers. You don’t have to be a member of OOIDA to be a real trucker. You don’t have to be an independent to be a real trucker. I am not sure what they mean by real trucker. All professional drivers deserve respect from both the ATA and OOIDA.

 

Jim Johnston achieved great things. The industry should mourn his passing and honor his memory. I met him only long enough to shake his hand. I have had the opportunity to meet Todd Spencer on several occasions. We don’t always agree, but he has always been respectful. I admire and respect Mr. Spencer. Sandi Myers Soendker has recently retired from Landline Magazine. I have a ton of respect for Ms. Soendker. We were able to disagree, respectfully. Sandi has always been professional. Jami Jones has giant shoes to fill.

 

I have hope. Jon Osburn recently had a post on his face book page. The post stated that he hoped that OOIDA’s membership would grow – basically double. I hope so too. As timing would have it, I was the first to comment on Jon’s post. I said that OOIDA could not achieve this goal without evolving. mostly respectful discussion ensued. One board member and I chatted off to the side. It was great to have a board member pay attention. Another board member encouraged a “minority” thinker to PM him.

 

OOIDA needs to get past the “real” trucker thing. The; if you aren’t in the majority thing has to go as well. One of the board members pointed out that I am not in the majority. I get that. His point of view does represent the majority of the current members. Again, I get that. Here is the thing, he can continue to be in the majority if the organization does not grow. If OOIDA wants to become more meaningful, we have to grow. In order to grow we have to respect and listen to those members who do not toe the party line.

 

 

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Jeff Clark

Jeff Clark of Kewaunee, WI has been driving a truck for 24 years. He has been an owner operator for 11 years.

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