Polaris Transportation driver John Giunta has had the nickname of ALLEYCAT ever since he was a boy playing with walkie-talkies. You’ll see it displayed on the side of his truck and is still his CB handle today. John is a 30-year veteran tractor-trailer driver and has been a part of the Polaris family for the past 10 years. He has been on the same run since joining Polaris and confirms this was one of the main attractions for accepting the position. John currently lives in Courtice, Ontario with his wife of 19 years and their three children but was born and raised in Montreal, Quebec, where he visits frequently to see family.
Polaris Transportation could not be more proud to announce that John has been selected as a finalist for the prestigious OTA Road Knight Team! In case you’re wondering, the OTA Road Knights are a team of first-class Ontario professional truck drivers who are dedicated to safety and professionalism in the industry. The Road Knights are ambassadors throughout the trucking community who travel the province to educate the public on topics such as how to safely share the road with trucks, professionalism, the numerous careers in transportation and the critical roles played by the industry. Their mission is to make Ontario’s roadways safer by encouraging all road users to become partners in safety. Each Road Knights Team member is employed as a full-time truck driver. During their two-year term, they step out of their cab one or two days each month to participate in media interviews and speaking engagements. The OTA Road Knights speak to community groups, safety organizations, schools, etc., relaying their knowledge and experiences.
It was Polaris’ Director of Risk Management, Kevin Wartman who got the wheels turning on John’s application to joining the Road Knights. “John is a very good speaker and his passion for Polaris and the industry are second to none. I will be very surprised if he is not selected as a Road Knight on February 28,” said Wartman.
“I take my career very seriously and look forward to every trip. If anyone was to ask my family, friends or work colleagues, they would tell you they have never heard me complain about trucking,” said John.
“When I pull a Polaris trailer out of the door with multiple customers’ freight on board, I feel a personal connection with each customer and take great care to ensure their freight arrives on time, without any damage. Working at Polaris is a great experience. We are tasked with online training every month, all year long, which is an excellent opportunity to learn more about our industry. Trucking demands constant training and current knowledge of the regulations of today’s modern industry. To me, this is exciting!”
John filled out the application and was delighted when Kevin sent him an email from the OTA informing them that he was chosen as one of the finalists.
“Considering Polaris has many drivers who would qualify, I am very humbled and honoured to be chosen. What appeals to me the most in joining the Road Knights is speaking with young men and women who are considering a career in trucking. Becoming a Road Knight will allow me the chance to share my experience and my enthusiasm with the next generation of drivers.”
John himself will tell you that even as a young boy, he had always wanted to be a truck driver. It had always been his passion and to this day, he still gets excited when he turns a corner and sees that 53-foot trailer following in his mirror.
On February 28, 2017, as part of the selection process, John will be required to present a five minute speech in front of the OTA Road Knights selection committee. The committee is comprised of representatives from the trucking industry including former Road Knights, trade media and the Ontario Trucking Association.
When asked for a “spoiler” on what he plans to talk about, John replied with, “I intend to say how I feel about the industry and really, just be myself. I’ll share my excitement and enthusiasm about this wonderful career I chose so many years ago.”
10–4 ALLEYCAT. We’re all rooting for you!