For regional dedicated driver Courtney, driving like a champion means more than just being an outstanding J.B. Hunt driver. It is how he makes his family proud. “I just want to be the best,” Courtney asserts. “Not only to make a name for myself, but to make a name for my family.”
Proud of the strong work ethic embedded in him by his father, Courtney is motivated by his desire to provide for his family. Referring to her as his “backbone,” Courtney is grateful for the support he receives from his wife, who is home caring for their children when he is on the road. “The support that my wife, that my children give me…it just makes me want to push even harder just to achieve more.”
Courtney started his truck driving career when, while working at a moving and storage company, his boss gave him the opportunity to obtain his CDL-A. Several years later, a former coworker reached out to Courtney about driving for J.B. Hunt. Courtney explains moving furniture for 18 years had taken a physical toll on him and he was eager for the new opportunity on a J.B. Hunt dedicated account.
“Talking to Courtney, you would think he has worked for J.B. Hunt for 10 years,” Regional Operations Manager Garrett says. Working as the account manager when Courtney started, Garrett notes he adapted to the J.B. Hunt culture immediately. “If you can put him in front of a driver or maybe even new hires that are just starting with the company…to see his perspective and his passion for the job, it will go a long way.”
His current account manager William praises Courtney for being a role model to the other drivers on the account. “Every time he meets the new drivers, he always gives them his phone number,” and assures them they can call him any time for help, William explains. Courtney says he is more than willing to get on their weekly conference calls to give advice and answer driver’s questions. “I realized at the end of the day – it doesn’t cost me nothing,” Courtney admits. It makes him feel better to know he helped someone.
When a distributor has a new storage facility, management relies on Courtney to survey the new site to make sure their food product deliveries can be made safely. Garrett explains Courtney conducts the survey from the perspective of a new driver and points out areas that could be dangerous or cause accidents. “He is a great judge of whether or not a new storage unit location should be approved.”
In addition to being essential to his account’s operation, Courtney is irreplaceable to his customers. “My favorite customer [is] in Parkersburg, WV,” Courtney confesses with a smile. “Every time I go there, they always welcome me with open arms and I really enjoy their company.” If he is running late, they will stay past closing time to wait for his arrival and will allow him to shut down at their location. Wanting to put him on a more challenging route, William took Courtney off his weekly deliveries to Parkersburg. When the customer found out, they demanded Courtney return. “No matter who I sent, he wanted Courtney back. That is just how much of an impact he has on his route,” William reveals. “They know him by name. They know his family… in the same way he knows their names, their families and knows their stories.”
“What drives Courtney is his work ethic. The way he was raised,” William asserts. “He always tells me the way he wants to raise his son.” Earlier this year, Courtney was greeted at the door by his son holding a package from J.B. Hunt. They opened it together to find an award addressed to Courtney for driving 2 years accident free. “It makes me feel good to hear my baby son say, ‘Dad, I’m proud of you,‘ ” Courtney exclaims. As of May 2018, Courtney had driven close to a quarter of a million miles accident and incident free. “My wife is saying, ‘You keep getting all of these awards, we are going to have to get a cabinet or just mark a special wall for all of your achievements.’ “
“I have a strong family at home…my wife, my mom, my children…everybody supports me through everything I do,” Courtney says. “J.B. Hunt – this account – they actually do the same thing.” Courtney is grateful he made the decision to switch J.B. Hunt two years ago. Not only has he made an invaluable impact on his account, but he has created relationships with his fellow drivers, management and customers, whom he now considers part of his family. “Like my family supports me, J.B. Hunt supports me as well.”
“I am actually proud and happy just to be in the position that I am in,” Courtney remarks. “Not only working for a name brand company, but actually being able to provide for my family. Being able to protect my family and just actually being who I am today.”
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