UTA sets convention attendance record; announces scholarship winners

The Used Truck Association’s (UTA)’s 19th Annual Convention, held last week in Orlando, once again broke all previous records for attendance, sponsorship and vendor support.

A celebration of the organization’s 30th anniversary, the convention welcomed a record 943 attendees. The UTA now has more than 1,300 members.

Convention attendees were treated to a retrospective of the association’s 30-year history. The presentation featured details of the UTA’s growth. Included among the milestones were: The formation of a annual scholarship fund to support the children of people in the trucking industry (winners below), industry recognized awards, the annual convention itself and the overwhelming support of top industry sponsors and leaders. UTA says its members now have access to training webinars and classes, in addition to a robust industry newsletter to help them stay up to date with industry news.

This year’s keynote speaker was Major Dan Rooney, USAF. Major Rooney is a highly decorated F-16 fighter pilot, now serving in the USAF Reserves. He served three combat tours in Iraq and is also a PGA professional golfer. Major Rooney inspired attendees with his talk about his service to his country and the Folds of Honor Foundation he founded to fund college educations for the spouses and children of fallen or disabled service members. Since its founding in 2017, Folds of Honor has raised more than $47 million.

A new feature to this year’s convention was the industry leadership panel. Joining this year’s panel were representatives from Navistar, Daimler, Kenworth, Peterbilt and Volvo. Panel members representing these industry giants discussed such pressing issues as inventories, used truck market outlooks, production backlogs, and product training and marketing. A lively Q&A session followed the discussion.

Rick Clark, vice president at National Truck Protection, was voted UTA President for 2019, and Ken Kosic, Sr. of Rush Truck Center in Olafe, Kan., won the UTA’s Marvin F. Gordon Lifetime Achievement Award. Next year’s UTA Convention will be held in Palm Desert, CA.

UTA 2018 scholarship winners and their future university:

  • Amanda Atkinson, Villanova University
  • Bryce Barker, University of Toledo
  • Heather Hockett, Butler CC/Friends University
  • Tyler Johnson, University of South Carolina
  • Zach Kauffman, Missouri State University
  • Jack Manchester, University of Central Arkansas
  • Anna Manchester, University of Arkansas, Little Rock
  • Emily Mangham – Valdosta State University
  • Warren Smith, Middle Tennessee State University
  • Taylor Stedem, University of North Carolina, Charlotte
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