Watson headlines Australian Freight Industry Award winners

Don Watson Transport MD joins other high-achievers recognised at glittering event

Watson headlines Australian Freight Industry Award winners
Noelene Watson was described as 'remarkable' at the awards night


Don Watson Transport’s managing director Noelene Watson has been awarded the transport and logistics personality of the year award at the 2014 Australian Freight Industry Awards (AFIA).

Watson was recognised for her outstanding contribution to the Australian transport and logistics industry over the past 20 years.

The 25th annual awards were held on Saturday and organised by the Victorian Transport Association (VTA).

VTA CEO Neil Chambers has described Watson as a "remarkable" character who is an advocate for employment opportunities for women.

"Following the sudden passing of her husband, Don, in 1994 (20 years ago this month), Noelene was thrust into managing the business while also raising three children," Chambers says.

"Since then, the company hasn’t looked back, operating over 85 prime movers and 120 trailers in refrigerated transport across the eastern seaboard of Australia."

Cranes R Us managing director Fred Mohammed was given the young achiever award.

The 31-year-old was recognised for the establishment of multiple businesses over the past year including Cranes R Us based in Richlands, Queensland.

The innovation award was taken out by Bulk Transport Equipment for developing a new type of articulated concrete mixing trailer capable of carrying twice the volume of a standard cement mixer truck.

"A technical highlight of the trailer is a lightweight electronic steering system, which is also connected to the trailer’s electronic braking system," Chambers says.

"The design allows for maximum manoeuvrability, eliminates tyre scrubbing and will help to improve fuel consumption and vehicle safety."

The Shaun Owen Memorial logistics award was given to the Australian Logistics Council (ALC) and GS1 Australia for applying innovating technology systems to their businesses to enhance productivity.

In Vehicle Camera Systems (ICVS) took home the best practice safety award for its Drivecam technology which utilises monitored video systems and dynamic feedback to identify and manage driver safety and compliance.

Metropolitan Express Transport Services was given the sustainability award for taking a distinct approach to actively reduce operational costs and its impact on the environment.

The investment in people award was given to Asixa’s CEO, Simone Turner for developing staff.

Half of her workforce has completed industry-specific qualifications, with the company encouraging staff to grow internally, Chambers says.

"It also has an active mentoring program in place and internal promotional opportunities have been realised."

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