Six school bus drivers were selected to receive the 2021 Transportation Specialist Award at the Minnesota School Bus Operators Association's annual summer conference. - Photo courtesy Minnesota School Bus Operators Association

Six school bus drivers were selected to receive the 2021 Transportation Specialist Award at the Minnesota School Bus Operators Association's annual summer conference.

Photo courtesy Minnesota School Bus Operators Association

The Minnesota School Bus Operators Association (MSBOA) recently honored several school bus drivers at its annual summer conference held in Alexandria, Minnesota, on June 21 and 22.

Six drivers from around the state were selected for MSBOA’s 2021 Transportation Specialist Award, according to a news release from the association. The drivers were nominated by their supervisors as persons who exemplify the best of the best in school transportation.

The applications were judged by the Minnesota Office of Pupil Transportation Safety on criteria such as years of service, dedication to safety, community service achievements, communication with school staff, and letters of recommendation from parents, co-workers, students, and school staff members.

The 2021 Transportation Specialist Awards were presented to:

  • Don Olson, Faribault Transportation, Faribault, Minnesota
  • David Meyer, Bluff Country School Bus, Lake City, Minnesota
  • Jesus “Chuy” Deleon, Southwest Coaches Inc., Marshall, Minnesota
  • Kevin Kastler, Kennedy Transportation, Zumbrota-Mazeppa Public Schools
  • Tracy Opatz, Trobec’s Bus Service Inc., St. Stephen, Minnesota

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 they serve, according to the association. 

The MSBOA was created in 1948 to focus efforts on school bus safety in Minnesota. This was the association’s 27th annual award ceremony.

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