Schneider National, Inc.
Most people would probably say that Jon Hodge has had a fulfilling life. As an Air Force veteran, he’s had the opportunity to see the world. Driving for Schneider National, he’s had the opportunity to see the country.
Driving has always been something Jon enjoyed doing, so joining Schneider wasn’t a difficult decision. He was looking for a change. Working as a computer training consultant for several years, the economy started to take a downward turn and he felt he needed more job security. And, he says, being a professional truck driver for Schneider provides both the financial security and lifestyle he was looking for, all while still allowing him to work at his own pace. “With driving, I’m told where and when, and it’s up to me to get there,” he laughs.
At nearly 60 years old, Jon has been driving for Schneider National for five years now. In that time, he has driven through 48 of the 50 states, as well as parts of Canada, logging close to 700,000 miles. Driving in Schneider’s van division, Jon tends to have longer routes and drives anywhere between 600 to 650 miles per day. And most weeks, he delivers an average of five loads.
For Jon, there is never a dull moment out on the road. In fact, it’s his life as a long-haul driver that he finds both inspiring and rewarding. Whenever the opportunity permits, he finds time to mix in some of the activities he loves most. An avid photographer, Jon relishes the opportunity to take out his digital camera, though he does point out that he pulls his truck off the road before aiming and clicking. He has seen the sun rise—fiery orange in Northern Maine—and set as a purple haze in Arizona and captured most of these moments on film. Jon also makes time to pull out his road bike (which he carries with him in his cab) for a ride to fill the downtime when layovers occur between loads.
During the time he’s been working with Schneider, Jon has had the opportunity to park his truck and ride through some of this country’s most breathtaking regions, including some of the national parks. But sightseeing isn’t the only perk Jon sees in driving for Schneider. “For those people out there that don’t have a degree, you can make as much money as a lot of people who do have one. It’s a secure job.” He’s also quick to mention that “everything in this country travels by truck…absolutely everything.” He says Schneider is a great option for professional truck drivers because it offers opportunities for both experienced and inexperienced drivers. Jon had no experience behind the wheel before joining the company, but was able to take advantage of Schneider’s company-provided driver training program, which provided him his CDL.
Jon admits he won’t drive forever. Someday he’d like to settle down in the Southwest, “maybe Albuquerque or Las Vegas,” he says. Until then, he’ll continue to watch the world fly by his windshield, slowing down for photo-ops. He does get excited about the days which include waking up somewhere in the Four Corners area— Utah, Arizona, Colorado and New Mexico—from there he says, “driving or riding my bike in any direction would be a fantastic day…”
The staff of Over the Road and Pro Trucker magazines would like to wish Jon continued success with Schneider National. For more information on becoming a driver with Schneider, see their ad on pages 30-31 and the insert card in this issue, call 1-800-44-PRIDE or visit schneiderjobs.com.