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For Immediate Release
May 11, 2004

For Information Contact:
Gary Petty, NPTC

NPTC Honors Private Fleet Professionals

Alexandria, VA – The National Private Truck Council (NPTC) presented its F.L.E.E.T. Leadership Awards May 3, 2004, at the NPTC 2004 Education Management Conference and Exhibition held in Atlanta, Georgia.

Since 1990, the NPTC F.L.E.E.T. Awards (For Leadership, Enterprise, and Excellence in Trucking) are given annually to recognize individuals who have made significant contributions to the National Private Truck Council, their profession, and the private trucking community.

The Private Fleet Executive of the Year, NPTC's highest individual award, went to Ralph Benson, President of Sentinel Transportation in Wilmington, Delaware. Mr. Benson was named President and CEO of Sentinel Transportation in 2002. Sentinel provides a wide range of dedicated truck transportation and related services for DuPont and Conoco Phillips.

Before his appointment at Sentinel, Mr. Benson spent 21 years with Conoco, Inc., where he held various commercial, operational, strategy and finance assignments in the transportation and marketing units.

He has a B.A and MBA in business from the University of Kansas. Ralph has been a presenter at both the Fleet Management Institute and NPTC's Annual Conferences. He is a member of the NPTC Conference Planning Committee.

Named Fleet Safety Professional of the Year was Kevin Connors, CTP, of ConAgra Foods, Inc. in Omaha, Nebraska. Mr. Connors joined ConAgra Foods, Inc. in late 2000, serving as the Director of Safety. His responsibilities include the safety of 40,000 employees worldwide.

Prior to joining ConAgra, Mr. Connors spent two years with Zurich Insurance as their Transportation Line of Business Managers. He began his career by serving seven years as a Police Officer in Beloit, Wisconsin.

His education includes a Bachelor of Science Degree in Administration of Justice from Southern Illinois University and a Masters of Science in Transportation Safety from the University of Wisconsin.

Mr. Connors serves on the NPTC Board of Directors and is a member of the NPTC Safety Committee.

The Fleet Member of the Year Award went to Ken Higgins of J.F. Fick, Inc. in Fredericksburg, Virginia. Mr. Higgins has been with J.F Fick, Inc. for over 25 years where he serves as their Director of Transportation and Human Resources.

Mr. Higgins has been an active member of the National Private Truck Council since 1984 and has served on the NPTC Safety Committee from its inception. In addition, in 2002 he joined the Conference Planning Committee with responsibility for the safety education sessions.

Ken has attended all NPTC annual conferences and many Fleet Management Institutes both as an attendee and as a presenter. Ken serves on the NPTC Board of Directors as the National Advisory Board Fleet representative.

This year's winner of the Allied Member of the Year Award went to Chris Oliver of PrePass in Phoenix, Arizona Mr. Oliver is the Director of Sales & Marketing for PrePass, which is operated by the Commercial Vehicle Operations business of ACS State and Local Solutions. He oversees the business' marketing, sales, and communications programs and has been with the company since spring of 2000.

Earlier in his career, Mr. Oliver served as General Manager of the Marketing Information Systems line of business for Havill Consultants, an oil and transportation industry focused consulting firm. Mr. Oliver founded his own consulting firm in 1997 and provided consulting services combining a blend of technological expertise with sound marketing and management strategy.

Chris holds a bachelor's degree from the University of Toledo with concentrations in Marketing, International Management, Finance, and German. Mr. Oliver has been an enthusiastic supporter of PrePass' sponsorship of the NPTC Best Practices Safety Guide program.

The Membership Development Award this year went to Don Metcalf of Penske Truck Leasing in Reading, Pennsylvania. Mr. Metcalf serves as Lease Product Marketing Manager at Penske Truck Leasing where he provides the marketing support for their sales team in Full Service Lease, Contract Maintenance, Special Equipment Services and Used Equipment Sales.

Mr. Metcalf has more than 22 years of experience in the field of marketing and prior to Penske he was Director of Marketing with Rollins Leasing Corp. Don joined Penske in 2001 as part of the Rollins Leasing acquisition.

Don holds a degree in Accounting from Robert Morris University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He is a member of the American Marketing Association, Delaware chapter and was President of that organization in 1996.

Over the past year Don has been a great supporter of the NPTC Membership Committee and a champion of the Gift Certificate Program.

Fleet Graphics Awards

Also announced during this ceremony were the Commercial Vehicle Graphics Awards. This is an annual event sponsored by the National Private Truck Council and Commercial Carrier Journal Magazine that recognizes fleets for their creative and conspicuous graphics design, color schemes, and general appearance which enhances the motor carrier industry's public image and the image or products of the company operating the vehicles.

This year's award winners are:

Day Category
First Place: Visionscapes Inc., Tucker, GA
Second Place: Bridgestone/Firestone North American Tire, LLC, Nashville, TN
Third Place: Zephyrhills Water, Division of Nestlé Waters North America, Tampa, FL

Night Category
First Place: Cooper Tire & Rubber Company, Findlay, OH
Second Place: Poland Spring, Division of Nestlé Waters North America, Brea, CA
Third Place: Cardinal Health 200, Inc., McGraw, IL

About NPTC
NPTC is the only national trade association exclusively representing the interests of corporate and business truck fleet managers. Through NPTC, both fleet and allied members come together to share information that enables them to meet the demands of changing business, safety and regulatory issues as well as competitive challenges. NPTC and its members are working together to shape the future of the private fleet industry.

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