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Woman at Work: Truck Driver Allyson 'Cadillac' Hay

Pronouns: she/hers

Tell us about your work.

I am a truck driver for the Walmart Private Fleet as well as a mentor and a NATMI (North American Transportation Management Institute) Certified Driver Trainer.

Dovetail Workwear Woman at Work Trucker Allyson Hay behind the wheel

How long have you been a truck driver?

23 years. I’ve been with Walmart for 19 years. 

What did you want to be when you were a little girl?

I’ve always been impressed with a uniform. My father was a bus driver for Muni in San Francisco. He always looked really sharp. One day my cousin pulled up in a rig and I thought it was the coolest thing.  

Music has to be really important on the road.  Who keeps you company on the road?

I love old school R & B and Motown classics. When I really need my soul magnified, I listen to Luther Vandross. 


Songs from Allyson and the Women In Trucking fleet to keep you jammin' on the road. 

How did you come to this line of work?

My daughter turned 18 and was ready to move out. She was going to school and working. After moving her into her own place, I went home, sat in my big chair and told myself I could do whatever I wanted to right now. The next day, on my way to work—as a tech in injection molding—I looked at the big trucks going up and down the highway and said, “I’m going to be a truck driver.” I quit my job and did it. It wasn’t as easy as it looked but failure was not an option for me. 

You’re known as Cadillac. Why?

A Cadillac is classy, smooth, and respected. That’s me.

What kind of truck do you drive?  

I drive an automated 2020 Freightliner Cascadia. It rides and drives like an oversized Cadillac.

What’s a typical work week like for you?

I start out on a Thursday and run 2,200–2,500 miles. I’m a regional driver and could end up within a 700-mile radius from my DC (Distribution Center). Then I return home on Monday evenings. I sleep 4 nights in my truck and 3 nights at home.

What is the perfect day off for Allyson Hay?

I’m off 2 days. We always have projects going at home. My husband and I are a great team and we love working together on stuff. We normally stop around 13:00 and go to the casino to relax and play the slot machine. I'm the spender, he's the winner.

Tell us about your involvement with the amazing nonprofit Women in Trucking.

Women In Trucking is on a mission to empower women in transportation, get more women behind the wheel, and educate the industry on obstacles women face on the road. I’m on the Image Team, which means I mentor other drivers and represent the organization proudly at truck shows and the WIT Accelerate! Conference. Want to drive or learn about other career options in the industry? We are here for you.

Dovetail Workwear woman in trucking Allyson Hay locks up her truckYour eyes are on the road for most of your waking life. Tell us a story from the road.  
First, I am a God-fearing woman. I typically prefer to stay the night at a truck stop for safety reasons. However, one night it was too late to find a parking spot at a truck stop, so I settled for a rest area. That night something woke me up and said, “Come, let’s go to the truck stop for the night.” I knew there wouldn’t be a parking spot, but that little voice kept encouraging me to “trust.” So, I put my shoes on and drove to the truck stop. Sure enough, there were trucks everywhere. I quietly said, “see I told you so,” when I turn right and saw the one open spot on the lot. That night I slept like a baby knowing that God is always looking out for me.

 

Is there a place you’d love to go that you’ve never been?

When I retire, I plan on taking a road trip to visit our national monuments. 

Are you a backseat driver in daily life?

No, I am not a backseat driver. When I am off the truck, I love to let someone else behind the wheel so I can enjoy the ride. 

Is trucking still a man’s world?  Has it changed significantly in your career lifetime? 

It is a man’s world, but women have really stepped up and stepped in, and are doing a great job. I smile every time I see a female driving. We are awesome!

Ride shotgun with Women In Trucking @womenintrucking: InstagramFacebook

In the photos above, Allyson puts the Task Pant to task. 


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