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October 30, 2009  |   Comments (4)   |   Post a comment

15 Fascinating Personalities

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Larry Hannon
School Bus Driver/Technician, Centennial School District,
Warminster, Pa.

Larry Hannon has been a firefighter for a volunteer fire department for 36 years. He also enjoys gardening vegetables and restoring antique tractors.

Born: Abington, Pa.
Home: Hartsville, Pa.
Years in industry: 33
Notable previous jobs: I started working at a gas station when I was 14 years old. After college, I worked full time as an auto body technician and drove a school bus in the morning.

How did you get your start in the industry?
Driving a school bus in the morning fit into my schedule while I attended community college in the afternoon and unloaded tractor trailers at night.

Current job duties?
I drive a school bus for Centennial School District and work at the body shop full time. Sometimes I transport students to athletic or marching band activities in the evening.
Top achievements?
My top achievements would have to be participating in school bus driver competitions. I have won the Montgomery/Bucks counties competition 18 times and the Pennsylvania state competition eight times. I've won the International School Bus Driver Safety Competition in the Conventional class five times and the Small Bus class once.

What is your secret to doing so well?
I never take it for granted. Every year, I practice with the help of my wife and sons. I also continue to study and learn school bus safety and transportation rules and regulations.

Outside interests?
I have been a firefighter for the Hartville Volunteer Fire Department for the past 36 years. I started driving the fire engines at the age of 18.  I have been the engineer for the first responding pumper for the past
25 years.

I also enjoy vegetable gardening as well as restoring antique tractors and muscle cars.

What is something that people would be surprised to learn about you?
I still own the first car I ever drove, a Ford Torino GT.

What do you like most about being in the industry?
I enjoy the children I have the privilege of transporting to school every morning. Driving the sports teams is fulfilling, too.  I can often be found in the stands cheering them on. Also, I appreciate the friendship of my coworkers at the Centennial bus garage.



Diana Hollander
Program Officer for Pupil Transportation, Nevada
Department of Education, Las Vegas

In addition to spending time with family and friends, Diana Hollander enjoys being outdoors, swimming, camping and hiking.

Born: St. Louis
Home: Las Vegas
Years in industry: 14
Notable previous jobs: I was the league softball coordinator for Clark County Parks and Recreation in Las Vegas.

How did you get your start in the industry?  
The job fell out of the sky. I was hired as a secretary for the director of the state Department of Education. He went on a medical leave shortly after I started and I told them I would help as much as I could.

The director never returned from medical leave and retired. No one at the department wanted this position, so I offered. I just picked up the ball and never stopped.

Current job duties? 
I oversee the state pupil transportation program, as well as criminal background checks for teacher licensing applicants.

Top achievements?  
My biggest achievement has been raising my daughter along with her father, and being her mom. I am also proud of how much I have learned about school buses. For a girl who could not even change a tire, I have come a long way.  

Outside interests? 
I love my family, friends, cooking, hiking, traveling, football, pool volleyball, swimming and camping.

If you could travel anywhere ... 
I would go to Italy. I would love to learn how to cook authentic Italian food while drinking Italian wine in a villa.

What is something that people would be surprised to learn about you? 
I once mud wrestled for charity.

What do you like most about being in the industry? 
The great people! School bus professionals are enthusiastic about what they do and have a dedication like no others. They give their time and knowledge generously and will do anything to help you out.

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Brad, You are truly an asset to Utah. You are also the proud winner of the NAPT National Competition. I would like to thank you for sharing knowledge with individuals in our industry. You are amazing. Launi Schmutz

Launi Schmutz    |    Oct 15, 2010 01:32 PM

I would love to see pics of the bus you are restoring. I myself have turned a '83 International into a motor home.

Joe Fondue    |    Aug 20, 2010 12:34 PM

Congratulations Diana - This is awesome. I could see you mud wrestling for charity however - you are an extremely warm and giving soul. You also have a tiny need to sometimes step over to the wild side. God Bless you my friend. MAxine

Maxine Mougeot    |    May 03, 2010 02:35 PM

Mr. Bob Riley was wonderful to work with here at Palm Beach County. I found him to be a wonderful mentor for all. Whether he was tutoring a driver in geometry for their GED test or teaching his staff how to deal with difficult parents he made it fun. He has the ability to make you feel comfortable and taught you to believe in yourself; I will always be grateful for the opportunities he gave me.

Sue Gorby    |    Nov 04, 2009 05:39 AM

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