PELHAM, Ala. — School bus dealership Transportation South hosted its eighth annual Love the Bus celebration on Tuesday.
The Valentine’s Day event honored Alabama’s top school bus drivers, as voted by the students, parents, and teachers they serve.
Sue Takacs, a veteran Morgan County Schools bus driver, was named the 2017 Alabama Love the Bus Driver of the Year.
Takacs was nominated for the honor by Hank Summerford, transportation director at Morgan County Schools.
“Mrs. Sue is a wonderful person and goes above and beyond the call of duty as a bus driver,” Summerford wrote in the nomination. “She is always enthusiastic, cooperative, and the consummate professional. She is always taking care of her children like a ‘mother hen’ therefore the entire community loves Mrs. Sue.”
Summerford also noted that Takacs bakes goodies for the mechanics in the shop when her bus is scheduled for maintenance.
About 34 school bus drivers in Alabama were nominated for the Love the Bus Driver of the Year honor. More than 150 people attended the event at Transportation South on Tuesday.
“There are thousands of great drivers, but we also have many drivers that have a real heart for their jobs,” said Bucky Law, president of Transportation South. “They realize that in a lot of cases when a student gets on the bus, their face might be the first smiling face they see all day long, and in the afternoon when they drop that student off, it might be the last. All of these drivers are like that, or they wouldn’t be here today.”
Also at the event, Chad Carpenter, program administrator at the Alabama State Department of Education, spoke about the remarkable track record of the school bus industry as a whole and within Alabama.