We Can''t Do It Alone

We Can''t Do It Alone

Copyright 2003, Traffic World, Inc.

As a member of the boards of directors of both the National Industrial Transportation League and National Small Shipments Traffic Conference, I was dismayed at the factual inaccuracies in John Schulz''s article about the leadership changes at the NITL and NASSTRAC. However, as one who is very proud of and familiar with both organizations, I think that John''s article could turn out to be very positive if it helps logistics professionals understand that they need to get off the sidelines and onto the playing field if they truly care about their profession. They need to "get off their butt" and support the professional organizations that represent their interests before those who shape national and state legislation.

As one who cares about the industry I have a responsibility to financially support the professional organizations that represent my interests.

As it relates to NIT League and NASSTRAC, (as well as other great groups such as the Transportation Consumer Protection Council, American Society of Transportation and Logistics, Council of Logistics Management and Transportation Intermediaries Association or industry-specific groups such as the Health Care conference), let me cut right to the chase: if your company ships or receives product, I really believe that as a logistics professional you have a responsibility to support one or more of these organizations. Without them, shippers lose a powerful voice in shaping legislation and they lose access to solid educational programs.

Beyond the fact that your dues will support advocacy initiatives or educational programs, you owe it to yourself to take advantage of the networking opportunities afforded by these organizations. It''s a privilege to work with people like Tom Pellington (chairman of the NIT League) and Terri Ferraro (chairman of NASSTRAC) and the boards of both organizations. It''s also a privilege to serve as the chairman of AST&L and to work with a great group of board members. These individuals are true champions who give of themselves tirelessly and do more good for shippers than most people realize. They don''t deserve criticism or inaccurate articles; they deserve support from their contemporaries in the industry.

So if you happen to think that you''re too busy or your company can''t afford membership dues, here are some closing thoughts. Most, if not all, of the individuals I serve with have demanding jobs, yet they serve their industry with distinction. It isn''t a matter of time; it''s a matter of priorities and what is important to you and your company. And if the problem is that you work for a company that can''t "afford it," e-mail me at Martranz@aol.com with the name of the person who is responsible for approving your membership, and I''ll be happy to give them a call to explain why they owe it to their company and to you to support our industry''s professional organizations. We can have a hugely positive impact on transportation matters affecting your bottom line. But we need your support.

Mike Regan

CEO, TranzAct Systems