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For Immediate Release
May 9, 2007

For Information Contact:
Gary Petty, NPTC

NPTC Inducts Four Into Driver Hall of Fame

Indianapolis, IN – Four truck drivers who have logged more than a combined 13.5 million miles of safe driving were honored by the National Private Truck Council (NPTC) and inducted into the NPTC/Bridgestone Firestone Driver Hall of Fame April 30 during the NPTC Annual Education Management Conference and Exhibition held in Indianapolis, IN.

The drivers are from NPTC member companies and have met the minimum qualifications of 20 years, two million miles or 50,000 hours of driving without a preventable accident. Many of the drivers have far exceeded these qualifications and are known for having made significant contributions to their industry and their communities. Since its inception, 84 drivers have been installed in the Driver Hall of Fame. This year's Hall of Fame inductees are:

Carl M. Baker
Praxair, Inc.
Mr. Baker began driving professionally in 1970 and has spent the last 28 years with Praxair, Inc. hauling nitrogen and argon liquids.  He has received National Safety Council awards and the Praxair Two Million Mile award.  The secret to his success:  He keeps a positive attitude, practices good driving habits and yields to traffic.  If he could choose his career over again, he says he would still drive because it comes easy to him, and he can make a good living.  

Ashton J. Gordon
Mr. Gordon has been with LOGEX, Inc. for 3 1/2 years and has driven more than 3,000,000 miles since starting his career 37 years ago. His workweek generally consists of 55 hours per week, carrying cryogenics along his 700-mile dedicated route from Wilmington, Calif. to Redondo Beach, Calif.  Mr. Gordon began driving in the U.S. Army and over the years he has driven for various trucking companies first as independent driver then an employee with NY Spool Co. as a tractor trailer driver. Now at LOGEX, he has been chosen to be the Safety Core Team Leader facilitating their Behavioral Based Safety process.  
Higinio Ortiz
Army and Air Force Exchange Service
Mr. Ortiz started his career with Army and Air Force Exchange Service (AAFES) in 1958 and has 48 years of dedicated service.  When he started driving, there were no driving schools available. The only instructions he received were the basics – how to start, shift and stop.  Today, he drives a tractor-trailer and primarily carries general merchandise. During his career with the Exchange Service, he has been awarded the One, Two, Three and Four Million Mile Safe Driver Award.  His performance has been recognized as  “Superior” through his devotion to his job and safe driving skills that have proven him to be a  “True and Successful Professional Driver,” according to his supervisors.  

Ernest B. Woodruff III
Smithfield Transportation
Mr. Woodruff joined the Smithfield Transportation family in August 1971 as a professional driver, logging more than 4,000,000 miles to date, he has maintained a safe and preventable accident free driving history with Smithfield throughout his career pulling refrigerated pork across the eastern portion of North Carolina.  He has received the annual safety bonus and award certificate every year for the past 35 years and was awarded the North Carolina Professional Driver of the Year in 2006. He assists in training the new drivers and teaches them the things his father and uncle taught him.

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About NPTC
Founded in 1939, the National Private Truck Council is the only national trade association exclusively representing the interests of the private truck industry and corporate/business private truck fleet management.  NPTC is the premier marketplace of information, networking and skill building for private fleet professionals as it leads in shaping the future of corporate transportation.

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