(Grain Valley, Mo., April 24, 2020)– The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association announced the recipients of this year’s scholarship fund. The OOIDA Mary Johnston Scholarship, which started in 1998, has awarded more than $350,000 to students who are the children, grandchildren or legal dependents of OOIDA members.
Five top scholars were chosen for this honor. To apply, the students were asked to submit a 500-word reflection essay on how a trucker has influenced their life, the way their educational goals resonate with their personalities and to entertain what changes they see occurring down the road that might improve the trucking industry.
Each year, one $2,000 scholarship and four $1,000 scholarships are awarded. An alternate is also named each year. The funds are transferred directly to the student’s selected institution and can be renewed for a total of four years.
Here are the winners for this year:
Gillian Layne Benson received the $2,000 scholarship and is the daughter of member Ralph Benson of Fairhope, AL. She will graduate from Spanish Fort High School in May. Gillian has received an acceptance letter from the University of Alabama at Birmingham where she intends to major in Biomedical Science and Psychology.
Wyatt Hansen is the grandson of lifetime member Glen Haumont of Geneva, NE. Wyatt will graduate from McCool Junction Public High School in May. He received an acceptance letter from Northeast Community College where he intends to major in Utility Lines.
McKinzie Smith is the granddaughter of lifetime member John Hinckley of Oceanside, CA. She will graduate from El Camino High School in June. McKinzie has applied to several colleges but hopes to attend the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) as a Human Biology and Society major.
Faith Pilkington is the daughter of member Charlie Pilkington III of Ripley, TN. She will graduate from Halls High School in May. Faith has received a letter of acceptance from the University of Tennessee Martin where she intends to major in Psychology.
Lauren Miller is the granddaughter of lifetime member Wayne Miller of Loveland, OH. She will graduate from Kings High School in May. Lauren has received an acceptance letter from Xavier University where she intends to major in Business.
Lindsey Henkle is the daughter of senior member David Henkle of Fort Wayne, IN. She will graduate from R. Nelson Snider High School in June. Lindsey has received an acceptance letter from Indiana University—Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) where she intends to pursue a career in Nursing.
The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association is the only national trade association representing the interests of small-business trucking professionals and professional truck drivers. The Association currently has more than 160,000 members nationwide. OOIDA was established in 1973 and is headquartered in the greater Kansas City, Mo. area.