Category Archives: Uncategorized

Join us in wishing George Warn all the best as he retires from Polaris Transportation

DSC_0068[2]George Warn, Director of Risk Management, is retiring. George joined our company a decade ago to head up our safety and compliance department. His duties included driver training, safety on the road and within our operation. He also played a key role with WSIB, C-TPAT, PIP, insurance implementation and compliance.

According to George, “I like to call my time here a stressful pleasure. All kidding aside, Dave and Larry Cox have been great to work for. I have had wonderful opportunities to learn and grow from the many new and varied challenges presented to me over my nearly 10 years here. I couldn’t think of a better way to wrap up my career.”

George Warn started his journey in 1973 as a professional driver and had 30 years in before moving to his career in training and compliance. Larry Cox explains, “We were a much smaller company at that time and George worked with us to assess the driving force of a specialized carrier we had just purchased. We hit it off immediately and hired him on the spot.”

George and his wife of 30 years, Judy, recently moved to Uxbridge as part of their retirement plan. They have 2 children and 3 grandchildren and love to watch them participate in a variety of sports and other activities. George hopes to retire his lawnmower too and enjoy the greens on the local golf course next spring. Other future plans includes travel, starting with a cruise in the immediate future.

Dave Cox adds, “As much as we will all miss George, please join me in wishing him well on the next chapter in his life journey. He has been a true pleasure to work with. We remain hopeful that when he is not golfing or travelling that he will consider doing some consulting for us. All the best to you and yours George!”

Nothing gives us more pleasure than promoting from within!

Shraddha and Charlene

Shraddha Tilva & Charlene Davidson

Charlene Davidson – from Manager of Training and Development to Director of Training and Development.

Charlene has been part of the Polaris Team since 2003. Her career started in brokerage, then operations and eventually training. Her husband Randy works with Polaris too and although family members don’t typically work side by side at Polaris, the company is all about family.

Charlene’s diverse background and depth of knowledge about the different aspects of the company was a great asset and led to her well-earned promotion as Director of Training and Development.

Her accomplishments are many and highlights include the development and launch of the Polaris Customer Care Department in 2015 and taking full responsibility for policies and procedures that come with being ISO, PIP and C-TPAT compliant.

Charlene comments, “We are over 10 times the size we were when I started. To share in that growth is exciting and to be acknowledged for going the extra mile is extremely rewarding.”

Shraddha Tilva – from Financial Analyst to Corporate Controller

Shraddha came to us 2 years ago to assist with month end, reconciling the bank and other accounting functions. This is her second promotion in 2 years and during her time with us she has become a valuable member of our team.

Shraddha received her MBA before moving to Canada in 2004 and completed her CMA from the Institute of Chartered Management Accountants in 2011. She currently resides in Brampton with her husband and 2 young children. Striking a good work, life balance has been achievable at Polaris as Shraddha explains, “Working at Polaris has been a great experience for me. Larry has placed his trust in my abilities and knowledge and rewarded my dedication to Polaris. We all work hard but we are not taken advantage of and are allowed our family lives too. It’s a great company to be part of.”

First Annual “Polaris Family Day” a Big Success

By Rebecca Muyano, Human Resources Manager

At Polaris, we need to keep customers’ freight moving…. holidays included! That doesn’t mean we can’t take a little break to have our own Polaris, Family Day celebration. Impromptu as it was, it was well attended and thoroughly enjoyed by all. We had a potluck spread that was absolutely delicious.

Both office and dock staff participated as we sampled homemade dishes from a variety of cultures here at Polaris. The main dishes ranged from jerk chicken to vegetable lasagna. The deserts from carrot cake to cinnamon buns. Others brought plates and napkins… it was a great event and all participants agreed it was very well received and definitely worth doing again next Family Day!

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Our dock staff[2][2]

When Polaris Says “Take me out to the ball game, we don’t kid around”

A record turnout of Polaris employees and their families attended the afternoon Jays game against the St. Louis Cardinals on Saturday June 7th. Our company was well represented at the game with over 225 attending. Although the Jays got smoked by the Cardinals with 4 runs in the eighth inning, that didn’t stop our crew from having a super time.

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Alex Kudinov and his family

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John Giunta, Chris Bante and his son

It’s a great event for the kids especially. There are many activities for them to enjoy like meeting the mascots Ace and Junior, face painting and even running the bases at the end of the game. There’s nothing like a ball game, the fresh outdoors, great friends and family sharing the day together. President Larry Cox states, “We encourage these kind of activities. It’s great to get to know each other outside of work and learn more about each other. Sharing an afternoon together creates memories that last a lifetime.”

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Ted Jeszka

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Turpin Cagan and his family

Along with running the bases, kids under the age of 14 also get a chance to dress up in their Blue Jays gear for a chance to win prizes and be seen on the large video board. When it comes to the Polaris team spending a day with the Jays… everyone is a winner!

Our people move freight. These are their stories: John Giunta

John Giunta loves his job. An Owner-Operator with Polaris for the past seven years, doing overnight runs to Indianapolis, he says he’s never dreaded a Monday night. John moved to Toronto from Montreal when he was just 12 years old and began working when he was 16. Something about the trucking industry always spoke to him, he says. It was a passion for a very early age. Whether it was the freedom of the open road, the interesting destinations or both, something kept him hooked on driving for the past 26 years.

“All these years later, I still feel my heart race with excitement when I turn a corner and I see that trailer following me,” he says.

Of the 26 years he’s been in transportation, John has spent 24 of them as an owner-operator. He worked in automotive trucking for 10 years previous to his career at Polaris and before that, a company that afforded him the opportunity to travel across the United States. When the recession hit the automotive industry, John decided it was time to make a move. He waited a year to be considered for the Indianapolis run with Polaris; when he got in, he never looked back.

“For me, the destination really matters. I like to know the cities I’m travelling to; I like to have a routine,” he says. “I love Indianapolis. The people are great… the city is friendly. It’s got a bit of that Southern charm.”

Trucking is a transient industry…many drivers change positions and companies every few years. But, John loves where he is and he genuinely cares about the work. “The motto I leave my house with every day is: when I pull out onto that highway, with that shipment of freight…they’re my customers. And, I take that responsibility very seriously.”  According to John, customers south of the border never see the Polaris drivers who transport their freight. But, in his eyes, that doesn’t diminish his responsibility. “It’s my job to make sure the shipment gets there safely, on time. I like to think there’s always a way to make the system work for you.”

John spent some time in dispatching…although he missed the open road; he enjoyed the communication aspect of that job. John also takes a keen interest in issues concerning the safety and compliance aspect of his business. “I like the feeling that I’m playing a part in a greater project,” he says. “Customs inspections, communicating with other drivers, dispatch…when we all work together, the experience is seamless.”

Passionate about trucking though he is, transportation was not John’s first love. “I’m an avid collector of vintage audio equipment,” he explains. John has about 175 pieces of audio equipment in his basement, stored on custom-build shelving units. “It’s actually more of an obsession,” he chuckles. Inspired by his brother-in-law’s stereo system back in the 1970’s, John started collecting vintage audio gear early, and never lost interest.

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“I love all kinds of music, too,” he says. He always has a mixed CD or a talk-radio to keep him company on his runs to Indianapolis. Sometimes, he’ll pick up the radio and chat to another driver. “The communication here at Polaris is great,” he says. “We’re all in touch with each other… it really is like a big family.”