• Press Release

Gene Reed Presented with ISRI’s Safe Driver of the Year Award

OmniSource driver has logged more than 46 years of safe driving in the industry

(New Orleans, LA) – At the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI) Annual Convention and Exposition, Gene Reed of OmniSource Corporation was presented today with ISRI’s Safe Driver of the Year Award for completing 46 verifiable years of safe driving without a single preventable accident. In addition to his safe driving record, Mr. Reed demonstrates what it means to hold safety as a core value, significantly contributes to the trucking industry, and continuously provides service to the community through extraordinary volunteer work.

“In my 30 years of transportation and safety I cannot recall a driver who has accomplished so much,” said Commodor Hall, transportation safety director for ISRI. “Gene has set the standard for others to follow, having given so much of himself and gone above and beyond on so many occasions. In the 1970s and early 80s truck drivers were often referred to as ‘Knights of the Road.’ I can honestly state that Gene Reed is one of those Knights of the Road.”

ISRI’s Safe Driver of the Year Award, now in its fifth year, recognizes outstanding drivers who have driven a commercial vehicle for at least 20 years without incurring a preventable accident. The award is based on the following mandatory criteria: 

  • Nominations may be submitted by ISRI members in good standing.
  • Nominees must be full-time employees whose primary responsibility is to operate a commercial motor vehicle.
  • Nominees must be current employees of the nominating member company, and must be employed for at least 1 year (12 consecutive months).
  • Nominations must be made by someone familiar with the nominee’s work history, such as manager, safety director, etc.
  • No more than 3 drivers may be nominated from the same member company.
  • Nominees must meet the minimum requirement of 10 years of verifiable employment as a commercial motor vehicle technician.

Other criteria taken into account are the driver’s contribution to highway safety (driver trainer), letters of appreciation, deeds of heroism on or off the job, and civic and fraternal organizations.

“Gene’s humble personality, commitment to safety, and attention to the ‘basics’ are some key fundamentals he exhibits as a Driver Trainer for OmniSource,” said Russell Rinn, president and COO of OmniSource Corporation. “Gene continues to serve his community tirelessly, not losing touch with his dedication and spirit, as he perseveres through the everyday challenges on our streets and highway as a professional truck driver.”

Mr. Reed’s other accolades include being inducted into the National Private Truck Council – Bridgestone Firestone Drive Hall of Fame in 2006. He is also credited with the heroic act of saving another driver’s life following an accident, and has a strong track record of community service.

Gene volunteers for the American Red Cross of Northeast Indiana, including having served as chairman of the Communications Committee, and served on the Emergency Services Committee. He also recently joined his local volunteer fire department.

Reed has also been a leader in the Northeastern Indiana Allen County Medical Response Team (MRT) Command Staff. He was selected as one of two drivers entrusted with MADE – 1 (Mobile Advanced Disaster Element One), a 45-foot van trailer which was converted into a mobile emergency room. Gene then developed a system to load the vehicle into a military C-5 aircraft for deployment. In addition to these responsibilities, Gene led the logistics units during field deployments mobilizing specialized equipment and supplies, and served as a strike team leader, team treasurer, and MRT Trainer.

Reed has also traveled to other regions of the country to assist in hurricane recovery. Following Hurricane Katrina, Gene devoted two weeks to help in re-establishing the communications infrastructure of New Orleans. He was also present in New Orleans when Hurricane Rita came ashore, and assisted in helping victims. Gene also assisted in recovery efforts following Hurricane Marilyn in the U.S. Virgin Islands in 1995.

In addition to travel to and lodging at the Convention, Mr. Reed received an award, personalized certificate, ISRI Safe Driver leather jacket, congratulatory letter, and a $500 personal check.

The second-place winner was James Cody of Sims Metal Management in Sacramento, CA; and the third-place went to Mike O’Connor of Sadoff Iron and Metal in Fond du Lac, WI.

*Photos Available Upon Request


The Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries, Inc. (ISRI) is the "Voice of the Recycling Industry™." ISRI represents more than 1,300 companies in 21 chapters in the U.S. and 35 countries that process, broker, and consume scrap commodities, including metals, paper, plastics, glass, rubber, electronics, and textiles. With headquarters in Washington, DC, the Institute provides education, advocacy, safety and compliance training, and promotes public awareness of the vital role recycling plays in the U.S. economy, global trade, the environment and sustainable development. Generating more than $105 billion annually in U.S. economic activity, the scrap recycling industry provides nearly half a million Americans with good jobs. For more information about ISRI, please visit www.isri.org.

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