Liz Alvarez: The Next Generation of Women in Trucking

May 23, 2022

When you think of the next generation of women in trucking, what comes to mind? At Chief Carriers, Liz Alvarez quickly comes to mind.

Every one of our prized drivers that we have been able to take the time to speak with up close and personal here has recognized that one of their favorite things about working for Chief Carriers is the very extended family atmosphere. Longstanding family tradition is frequently one of the most domineering traits when it comes to the diverse trucking industry, and Chief Carrier’s very own Liz Alvarez’s father was driving for over 20 years before becoming an Owner Operator hauling grain.

Liz Alvarez and her two children.

Liz attended Grand Island Senior High and was forced to leave school at the age of 17 in 2012 when she became pregnant with her oldest daughter. She then made the decision to move north to Aberdeen SD to begin working at Northern Beef Packers, where her determination, grit, and talent were immediately recognized. She was rapidly promoted to Beef Plant Trainer, where she enjoyed every minute of learning the ropes of day-to-day management and safety protocol. She stayed in this role for 4 years and then felt the calling to move back to Grand Island to complete her GED after the plant underwent bankruptcy filings.

In 2017, Liz went back to the beef packing industry and took every day very seriously while showing up with her trademark smile and can-do attitude! She flourished as a safety lead on the Kill Floor, and a single mother of two while taking on the grueling brunt of 16-hour shifts. Even though her warrior spirit and love for her children easily carried her through these times, more duties kept piling up while she was off and, on the clock, and she knew she soon needed a drastic change.

New Beginnings in The Trucking Industry

In 2021, Liz began the CDL program at Hastings CCC, and fate touched her life again when she met Driver Recruiter Mandee Lade. She accepted the invitation to tour the Chief home base and learn more about flatbed, where she crossed paths with our very own shining star on the road in the form of Jolene Franzen. Liz had never been one to enjoy sitting still and knew that her sense of determination would carry her all of the way to the finish line in terms of the challenges flatbed operation offers.

Liz Alvarez on top of the world.

Liz began her career here at Chief Carriers in February and was able to enjoy the solace and sights of the road with Jolene Franzen before she set out on her own. Her dad is beaming with pride when it comes to her achievements, and she still vividly remembers going over his weekly ledgers with him and seeing the potential for income and independence. Known as both “The Beast” and “The Energizer bunny” by her coworkers, her time spent on the road gives her the perfect opportunity to listen to music and think of new ideas to post on her well-followed TikTok account. Liz uses the wildly popular social media platform to inform others about life on the road and to educate others about the next generation of women in trucking.

I believe young talent like Liz, is the future of the transportation industry and Chief Carriers. She epitomizes the next generation of women in trucking. Her drive and determination to be successful will carry her through whatever she chooses to do for a career.  Thankfully, she has chosen to be a professional driver for Chief Carriers and is breaking all the rules of traditional flatbed drivers!  She has the skillset, drive, and personality to become a serious influencer and role model for other women looking to make waves in the trucking industry.  I am thankful she has chosen Chief to start her career and I look forward to mentoring and working with Liz to achieve all her dreams. ~ Andrew Winkler, General Manager of Chief Carriers

There is absolutely a very rare breed of “nervous energy” at the core when anyone is thinking of driving an XXL truck, and you’ll never know yourself until you take the plunge and give it a try. You sometimes must get a bit creative while securing the load, and this can provide a very vigorous and rewarding workout! There’s a certain type of pull on your heartstrings that you feel on the road that is contagious, and when Liz finally met General Manager Andrew Winkler, he loved her dream of owning a female-only trucking company with a pink fleet.

Any dream worth spending time on can influence you enough to change your life, and Liz will remain a strong beacon of inspiration for anyone who has passion, purpose, and drive. If she ever feels like coming off the road, she will receive a warm welcome in dispatch and load planning due to her extensive experience, but for now, her days will be spent happily rambling down the Heartland’s interstates with a deeply-rooted song in her cabin, and constantly beaming smile!

Driving The Next Generation of Trucking

The trucking industry has come a long way in recent years. And yes, Liz is part of the next generation of women in trucking. But, we have a long ways to go too. Non-profit organizations like The Next Generation in Trucking Association are engaging and training talented individuals like Liz Alvarez by partnering with high schools, community/technical colleges, and private schools.

The Next Generation in Trucking Association is a non-profit trade association that is engaging and training the next generation of trucking industry professionals by partnering with high schools, community/technical colleges, and private schools to launch training programs around the United States.

At Chief Carriers, we’re diligently working to recruit the best talent in the industry.  We want to be part of the change in the next generation of women in trucking. All females employed at Chief Carriers have the opportunity to be a member of the Women’s Council.