Thursday, October 12, 2023, marked the launch of the Be Pro Be Proud initiative in Tennessee, which aims to highlight the role skilled trades play in our workforce and build a new generation of professionals. Initially kickstarted in Arkansas, the BeProBeProud initiative now spans Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee. Each BeProBeProud trailer is outfitted with interactive simulation experiences, enabling students to try out different trades and find a field that aligns with their interests.
This event reflects a more comprehensive narrative —the growing demand for skilled trades professionals. With over 3.5 million truck drivers in operation, moving 10.5 billion tons of freight annually, the trucking industry is a cornerstone of the U.S. economy. However, a pressing need remains in the industry.
In a proactive response, Governor Bill Lee and the TN General Assembly recognized this upward trend and allocated $1.5 million in appropriations on May 12, 2022, to kickstart the project. The initiative was then spearheaded by Sarah Burnett with the Tennessee Chamber of Commerce, alongside countless volunteers and sponsors who rallied together to make this possible.
McGriff Tire Company, Inc., Titan Transfer, Inc., McKee Foods Transportation, LLC, and Rush Truck Center make up the sponsors from the trucking industry along with Jill Sito from McKee Foods who donated her skills to design the Tennessee Be Pro Be Proud Trailer. To everyone involved we say thank you for making this possible.
While the kickoff event is now behind us, the opportunity to join this program is still open. To learn more, book the trailer, or join the mission, visit BeProBeProudTn.com.
Watch the WKRN video report on this event below: