Kuntz, chief executive officer of Watkins & Shepard Trucking Inc., Helena, Mont., began his 16-month term as chairman of the board of directors of ATA on Tuesday. He succeeds Patrick Quinn, CEO and co-chairman of U.S. Xpress Enterprises, who has held the position since October 2005.
During his term as chairman, Kuntz said he aims to build consensus within the trucking industry on highway funding, environmental and tax policy issues. Kuntz also is supportive of tort reform and attracting new drivers to the industry.
During his term as ATA's first vice chairman, Kuntz played a lead role in developing the organization's truck driver recruitment campaign, which includes GetTrucking.com. ATA modeled its Company Driver Tuition Finance Program after a financing program successfully piloted by Kuntz at Watkins & Shepard as a means of addressing the company's shortage of long-haul truck drivers.
Watkins & Shepard Trucking is a national transportation company providing truckload (both dry van and flatbed), less-than-truckload and brokerage services. From its beginnings 33 years ago that married a small 16-truck company and a beer distributorship, the company has grown to more than 700 trucks and drivers, 1,095 total employees and a nationwide network of 23 terminals and drop yards in 15 states.
Normally ATA officers hold one-year terms but Quinn and Kuntz served longer to fill the term of Mac McCormick, who died in a plane crash last year.
The American Trucking Associations is the largest national trade association for the trucking industry. Through a federation of other trucking groups, industry-related conferences, and its 50 affiliated state trucking associations, ATA represents more than 37,000 members covering every type of motor carrier in the United States.