The Minnesota School Bus Operators Association (MSBOA) last week recognized six school bus drivers and two veteran contractors for their dedication to the safety of students.

MSBOA presented the awards on June 15, during its annual summer conference at Ruttger’s Sugar Lake Lodge in Grand Rapids, Minnesota.

The association’s prestigious Jim DeVeau Award went to Tom Hey, whose family has been involved in the school bus industry for multiple generations. His parents, Marv and Jan Hey, operated Southwest Coaches in Marshall, Minnesota, for many years before handing over the reins to Tom and his brother Jim. The company has grown and added locations in Jackson and Fairmont, Minnesota.

MSBOA officials said that Tom Hey was chosen for the Jim DeVeau Award based on the work he has done for the association. He has served as president of MSBOA and currently holds the secretary/treasurer position.

“Tom is always ready to voice his thoughts on industry concerns and pushes others to find the safest way to transport students,” association officials said.

MSBOA gave its 2015 Lifetime Achievement Award to Mike Krois. The award honors past or present association members who have dedicated their lives to the Minnesota school bus industry and the safety of the state’s children. Krois owned and operated school bus operations in Duluth, Minnesota, and he served on the MSBOA board and was active in the Minnesota school bus roadeo.

MSBOA’s 2015 Transportation Specialist Award winners were (from left) Ken Albers, Andy Skwira, Teddy Moore, Ken Sallman, Bruce McKeever and Steve Forsberg.

MSBOA’s 2015 Transportation Specialist Award winners were (from left) Ken Albers, Andy Skwira, Teddy Moore, Ken Sallman, Bruce McKeever and Steve Forsberg.

MSBOA also handed out its 2015 Transportation Specialist Awards to six school bus drivers from around the state. The drivers were nominated by their supervisors, and the applications were judged by the Minnesota Office of Pupil Transportation Safety on such criteria as years of service, dedication to safety, community service achievements, communication with school staff and letters of recommendation.

Here are the 2015 Transportation Specialist Award winners:

• Steve Forsberg, Faribault Transportation, Faribault
• Andy Skwira, Trobec’s Bus Service, St. Stephen
• Ken Albers, Spanier Bus Service, St. Cloud
• Bruce McKeever, M & M Bus Service Inc., Maple Lake
• Ken Sallman, Vision of Elk River Inc., Elk River
• Teddy Moore, Voyageur Bus Co., Duluth

In addition to the award, a $1,000 check was awarded in each driver’s name to go toward a scholarship fund for deserving youth in the school district that the driver serves.

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