Kendra Hems

President, Trucking Association of New York

Since the age of eight, Kendra has been around trucks and the industry. Kendra’s stepfather’s family owned a trucking company, and after college, Kendra joined the industry working as a dispatcher at her stepfamily’s company. Kendra has been working in the industry ever since — 25 years later.

Kendra told TMAF she has “had many memorable experiences” throughout her career and that working at her stepfamily’s company taught her early lessons that have guided and led her success in the industry. According to Kendra, some of those lessons include building relationships, treating drivers and customers with respect, listening to and acting on concerns, ensuring loads are delivered safely, and getting drivers home to their families safely.

One of the proudest moments of Kendra’s career in trucking was being awarded the American Trucking Associations President’s Trucking Association Executive Council Leadership Award in 2014. Kendra, who was nominated by her peers, was given the award in recognition of her work to promote the trucking industry and the industry’s image, and her work advocating on issues important to the industry in New York State. Kendra said, “My trucking association counterparts across the country are some of the most professional, dedicated and hard-working individuals I know. I can think of no greater honor than to be recognized by one’s peers, particularly when every one of them is deserving of the award as well.”

When asked what Kendra would tell other women who are considering joining the trucking industry, she said, “Do it!… There are so many opportunities in the industry that offer the flexibility women need to balance careers and raise families. Being in the trucking industry is like being part of an extended family — I have had some amazing experiences and met some of the most educated and professional individuals along the way. I can’t imagine working in any other industry.”

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