Ontario Trucking Association

Ontario Trucking Association

November 15, 2006 18:31 ET

Kriska CEO, Mark Seymour, Elected Ontario Trucking Association Chairman

Picking up the torch on speed limiters, growing OTA to be his focus

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(CCNMatthews - Nov. 15, 2006) -

Mark Seymour, CEO of Kriska Transportation in Prescott, ON has been elected chairman of the Ontario Trucking Association for a two-year term. Mark has served for a number of years on the OTA board and executive committee. He is also on the executive committee of the Canadian Trucking Alliance.

One of the key architects of OTA's policy to seek the mandatory activation of speed limiters, the new chairman says he is pleased with the momentum and progress on the issue and that its implementation in Ontario will be a priority of his chairmanship.

"It's remarkable how far the issue has progressed since OTA unveiled it in November 2005," he says. "What started as an Ontario initiative under Scott Smith's (past OTA chairman and CEO of the JD Smith & Sons) leadership now has support from industry across North America. I feel confident we will get the job done."

"At Kriska we have governed the speed of our company vehicles since the early 1990's. During that time our company grew from about 35 power units to over 400 today," he says. "I don't buy the argument that limiting the speeds of your trucks will impact negatively on a company's ability to provide service." His company has the awards to back him up. Earlier this year, Kriska was recognized, for the 6th year in a row as one of "Canada's 50 Best Managed Companies" and was a recipient of the Canadian Transportation & Logistics Magazine "Carrier of Choice" award.

But, Mark says his term will be about more than speed limiters; he also wants to see the OTA membership continue to grow. "I can't begin to tell you the benefits to my business and to me personally through our membership and participation in OTA. So many doors have been opened to me. Through OTA I have been able to rub shoulders with the CEO's of the best carriers not only from Canada and the United States, but from around the world. You can't get that kind of experience and advice anywhere else."

Mark started at Kriska, then owned by his late father, Ken, in 1983 as a driver. He later worked as a mechanic, service supervisor, dispatcher, operations manager and VP sales. He became president in 1995. "Before I took over, the company was not involved in OTA. Our management thought we could do it ourselves and OTA was just a club for the big boys from Toronto. That could not be farther from the truth and I am living proof of that."

Mark says he will also encourage OTA members who have not served on the association's board of directors to get involved. "With a board of over 80 carriers there is a lot of ability to ensure we have some new blood on the board, or involved on some of our committees. I will be encouraging that."

Over the years, Mark has played a strong role getting involved in OTA lobbying activities. "I have met with provincial and federal ministers as well as senior civil servants. At first, I was a bit nervous about it but now I see how important it is for the industry to have a strong voice and to be able to explain what we do to government. In a highly regulated business like trucking, which shares its workplace with the public, this is extremely important." And, he says, "no one does it better than OTA. Kriska is also a big supporter of the OTA Road Knights Team.

While he says that OTA's primary function will always be to represent the industry before government, the media and the public, "the association also provides seminars and workshops and products and services such as log books, handbooks, cargo seals, etc. We will continue to look for new ways to provide added value to the members on a selective basis."

Mark and his wife Kathy have two children and reside in Maitland, ON. Mark and Kriska play an active role in the community supporting several good causes.

Note to editors: Photo of Mr. Seymour available.

The Ontario Trucking Association (OTA) is a business association representing motor carriers operating into, out of and within Ontario. The trucking industry is one of Ontario's largest employers. Trucks haul 90% of all consumer products and foodstuffs produced and consumed in the province and 80% of Ontario's trade with the United States. Founded in 1926, the association's membership comprises trucking companies of all sizes, shipping all types of commodities, from all regions of North America. OTA is a member of the Canadian Trucking Alliance. The Globe & Mail has stated that "OTA and CTA have been among the most successful lobbyists in the land."

Contact Information

  • Ontario Trucking Association
    Rebecka Torn
    Mgr. Communications
    (416) 249-7401 x 224 or Cell: (403) 993-6666
    (416) 245-6152 (FAX)
    Website: www.ontruck.org