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Professional Truck Driver Institute Relocates to Denver
After 20 years of being managed by the Truckload Carriers Association, PTDI will now be operated by the same firm that oversees the North American Transportation Management Institute
The Board of Directors of the Professional Truck Driver Institute (PTDI) has voted to move the organization’s headquarters to Denver, Colorado. PTDI will now be managed by Leading Associations, the company that manages the North American Transportation Management Institute (NATMI).
Since 1996, PTDI operations have been administered by the Truckload Carriers Association (TCA) of Alexandria, Virginia. When the two organizations first came together, many commercial driver training programs had limited organization. There were no uniform standards for professional truck driver training. The challenge was to not only develop suitable standards and certify courses taught to those standards, but also to convince the trucking industry, insurance companies, schools, and other stakeholders to voluntarily accept formalized entry-level driver training.
Under TCA’s management and through the hard work of many people—including long-time certification coordinator Marlene Dakita—PTDI accomplished all of its goals and is now eager to take on new challenges.
“Our decision to switch management organizations was based primarily on three things that all seemed to converge at the same time,” said David Money, PTDI’s board chairman, who also chaired the Certification Commission for almost a decade. “First, the federal government is now putting forth its own prerequisite training standards for entry-level commercial truck drivers, so PTDI’s focus will be changing accordingly. Secondly, although TCA and PTDI have always worked closely together, TCA’s leadership now needs to concentrate more on truckload-specific issues, as it should. And finally, Marlene—who has worked tirelessly for us for nearly 21 years and intimately knows the organization—has announced her retirement. Change was simply inevitable.”
As a result, PTDI contacted Jeff Arnold, president of Leading Associations. As the company that provides management services for NATMI, another prominent trucking industry certification organization, Arnold’s firm was a natural choice, both to oversee the transition and to lead PTDI through its next phase. Tim Blum of Leading Associations will be serving as PTDI’s executive director.
“This is a great fit for PTDI, and for us,” said Arnold. “For the past 16 years, we’ve been managing operations for NATMI, which could be described as a sister organization to PTDI. Now we’ll use that certification experience to benefit PTDI.”
John Lyboldt, TCA’s president, said, “TCA has always been a strong proponent of PTDI and its mission. Our officers and board wanted to find an organization that could grow PTDI as it heads into the next stage of its existence. Jeff has already had many years of experience by serving on PTDI’s board and Certification Commission, which gives him a deep understanding of its operations, members, and volunteer leadership.”
Lyboldt continued: “As for Marlene Dakita, both TCA and PTDI owe her a huge debt of gratitude. She is such a talented, hard worker, and her organizational skills are legendary. We are extremely proud to have had her with us for so long.”
PTDI’s transition will take effect immediately. To ensure a seamless transition for everyone involved, the phone number and website/email addresses will remain the same.