Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Hat’s off to you, Mouse

TravelCenters of America’s second annual Citizen Driver Award recognizes professional drivers who help bring respect to the truck driving profession. One of this year’s Citizen Drivers is Robert “Mouse” Fernald – a darned fine example of good citizenship, safety and community involvement.

An OOIDA Life Member from Westbrook, Maine, he’s a driver for Walmart’s fleet and has been behind the wheel for more than 21 years and 2.5 million miles.


OOIDA Life Member  Rob Fernald, center, at the renaming
ceremony with OOIDA Life Members Laurie and Buz Scutt
Rob has received multiple driving and safety awards during his career. He participates in the Maine State Truck Driving Championships, an annual event he enjoys.

In mid-May, he placed second in the three-axle class, which was cool, but for Rob – that was not the most fun.

Rob says what makes this year’s state event unique is the inclusion of high school students enrolled in commercial truck driving classes at four vocational schools across the state. For the first time, top ranking students from those schools were invited to compete alongside the pros at the state event.

“I am much more proud to have worked with the group of students from my hometown – which one of them took third place,” he told me last week.

That from Rob is quite a compliment. He’s a four-time State Champion in multiple classes of competition.

If you attended the Mid-America Trucking Show in March and spent any time at Papa John’s parking lot, you may have enjoyed some of Rob’s cooking. He and a group of other trucks set up a parking lot kitchen café tent for attendees well known for its menu – the “Because We Can Café.”

Rob supports a number of charities, including New England Truck Drivers’ Charity Challenge, Maine Trucking for Kids Charity, Special Olympics Convoy, Pull a Plane for Wounded Warriors, and Wreaths Across America. He is a former Trucker Buddy, too.

As one of the 2015 Citizen Drivers, Rob got to pick his favorite TA or Petro Stopping Center location, and the TA in Willington, Conn., is now the Robert Fernald Travel Center.

Congratulations, Mouse. Your commitment to professionalism sets much-appreciated high standards for the driver industry.