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Where did 2021 go?

Between an ongoing pandemic, a difficult supply chain, a truck driver shortage, and record-breaking freight volumes – it’s been quite a year for trucking.

Nussbaum drivers traveled approximately 47,000,000 miles, hauling 75,000+ loads. That’s the equivalent of driving around the world 1,887 times!

If we could choose one word to describe this past year, it would be “growth.” Over the past 12 months, Nussbaum has grown substantially in driver and employee count, physical footprint, and launching some new ventures.

Here are a few highlights from 2021:

Expanding Our Footprint

In March, Nussbaum opened a second maintenance hub in Channahon, IL. This location allows us to serve drivers traveling through Chicago who can’t easily reach our terminal in Central Illinois. We also built a new shop office and bay expansion at our main terminal in Hudson. The new offices house the shop management team, maintenance coordinators, service advisors, and the facilities staff.

Launching the "Love, Above All" Trailer Graphic

What began with a simple phrase and a chalkboard grew into a company-wide experiment and eventually, a new trailer graphic. Employees chose a word – something in their life that they struggle to put love above – wrote it on the chalkboard, and crossed it out. The chalkboard image became the trailer wrapping, and the first trailer was delivered in August. Read the full story of “Love, Above All.”

In November, the new trailer design earned Nussbaum a designation as one of Commercial Carrier Journal’s “Five Flashiest Fleets.”

Joining the Ranks of Certified RED

Thirty-seven drivers became Certified RED this year! Each Certified RED driver is publicly recognized and presented with an exclusive RED hat, a sterling silver ring, and a $0.02 bump to their mileage rate. We greatly enjoyed each presentation and the opportunity to learn more about each driver’s unique story.

Certified RED is Nussbaum’s official continuing education and development program where drivers boost their skills and paychecks through hands-on activities and learning assignments. Learn more about Certified RED.

Celebrating Driver Appreciation Week - Sept 12 - 18

We loved getting to celebrate our drivers during National Driver Appreciation Week! We held daily Facebook Live events, and each driver received a special custom-made Nussbaum box of goodies. It was amazing to see the outpouring of support for truckers, not only here at Nussbaum, but also across the country.

Best Overall Fleet to Drive For 2021

On September 27, Nussbaum was recognized as the Best Overall Fleet to Drive For (Large Fleet category) at the Truckload Carriers Association conference in Las Vegas. We were also recognized for finishing in the Top 20 Best Fleets to Drive for seven consecutive years. This award belongs to each of our employee-owners who have worked to make our success possible! Read more about the Best Fleets award.

Launching the Nussbaum Trucking Academy

In October, Nussbaum began a new venture in education with the launch of Nussbaum Trucking Academy at Heartland Community College. Heartland’s CDL school is now administered by Nussbaum staff and taught by Nussbaum instructors. Students will learn to drive in Nussbaum equipment, using our new “Drive Your Career Forward” trailer graphics.

This school is open to all aspiring CDL holders, regardless of where they work after graduation. Learn more about NTA@HCC.

ESOP Fishing Derby

To kick of Employee Ownership Month (October), drivers, employees, and their families gathered at Nussbaum for the annual Fishing Derby. In total, we caught 291 fish and enjoyed a wonderful day of good old-fashioned fun, complete with lunch, prizes, and good conversations.

Purpose Driven

Another word that comes to mind to describe 2021 is “blessed.” No, things haven’t always been easy. No, our plans didn’t always go the way we thought. But through it all, our employee-owners stayed purpose driven – out on the road, in the office, and in the shop. They chose to own their actions and make a difference where they saw opportunity. They found a purpose in their work that exceeded the day’s difficult circumstances.

And that’s the real win of 2021.

We’re excited to step into 2022!