This Monday morning, Minnie Welch headed for her office…the cab of her semi-truck. It was a beautiful, sunny day to hit the road. But this was not a career she ever considered. As she told me, “No! Not at all. These trucks intimidated me!” But in 2001, she wanted to break out from a job with 4 walls. “You don’t have to deal with a lot of people. It’s just you and the road and the tunes you like. Thank goodness for XM!”
Minnie is part of the latest and greatest trend in trucking. For the first time, women are approaching a double-digit percentage of truck drivers nationwide, in what had been one of the most male of professions. Paul Enos, the CEO of the Nevada Trucking Association says, “The driver door is open for women. We have some great female truck drivers here. There’s even an organization called ‘Women in Trucking.'”
And the industry is far more female-friendly. Linda Sutherland drives trucks for ITS Logistics in Sparks. She started driving in 1981, back when “there were no showers at the truck stops. They were strictly men’s showers and they had to close them off so you could get a shower.” She says that not the case now.