Shannon Newton Takes Driver's Seat at Arkansas Trucking Association

by Marty Cook  on Monday, Jul. 7, 2014 12:00 am  

Shannon Newton

Newton soon became more than an accountant-manager and morphed into the association’s Jane of all trades. She edited the association’s journal, the Arkansas Trucking Report, and handled endorsement agreements with various entities.

It didn’t take long for Newton to become a diehard fan of the trucking industry.

“I just really liked it,” Newton said. “I enjoy the industry. I enjoy the people.”

In the news release announcing her promotion, Newton was said to have been involved in “planning, finance, member services, governance, regulatory and legislative affairs and advocacy.”

“It’s fair to say that things have been added to my plate,” Newton said. “Everything that was revenue generating, I oversaw.”

Newton said she doesn’t have specific goals for her tenure as head of the association, which acts as representative for its 283 members. That’s where Newton’s un-nerdy social skills come in handy, since she said it is important to be able to communicate with various trucking organizations as well as those in the political arena.

“We want to accomplish what the companies desire,” Newton said. “It’s my responsibility, it’s the association’s responsibility, to be equipped to achieve that.”

Newton said when she was named president she thought of her grandmother, a former civics teacher. Newton said being a woman in the trucking industry can be a hurdle but prominent industry women such as Stephens and Judy McReynolds, CEO of ArcBest Corp. of Fort Smith, show that trucking is not a men’s-only market.

“My grandmother told me I could be anything I wanted to be,” Newton said. “I want to be a good executive. I don’t want to be a good female executive.”



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