Delta Nu Alpha Transportation Fraternity Volunteer Chapter # 135’s History
In 1957, several railroad and motor carrier representatives met to discuss forming a Nashville Chapter of Delta Nu Alpha Transportation Fraternity. After several meetings, with ten to fifteen people present, a Charter was applied for. It was granted to Volunteer Chapter # 135 on May 24, 1957. William P. McDaniel was elected as the first Chapter President.
The group met informally in meeting rooms of banks and savings and loan associations for a couple of years. Membership was comprised of traffic department personnel of shippers, railroad and motor carrier sales representatives, terminal managers and air freight personnel. All members were from Nashville and to have fifteen in attendance was considered a big crowd.
Eventually dinner meetings were held and the membership grew to a record 168 in May 1986. During the years, dinner meetings have been held in places such as Peggy Wales on Broadway, Morrison’s Cafeteria on West End Avenue, St. Charles on Music Row, The Airport Hilton, Spence Lane Ramada Inn, Wyndham and currently our meetings are held in Madison, TN at Woody’s Steakhouse.
According to the International By-Laws, in the past at least eight meetings during the year must have educational value to them. Volunteer Chapter #135 has fulfilled the educational goals and objectives of the Fraternity by having various speakers on many topics of interest to those employed in the transportation industry by sponsoring timely and special seminars and workshops. All of the education has been provided at a minimal cost to the membership.
In 1980, and for the first time, Nancy Mason represented Volunteer Chapter #135 at a National Education Conference. Since then, many chapter officers and members have attended various Conferences. In 1984 Volunteer Chapter #135 hosted the Annual Education Conference under the dedicated and capable leadership of past President Richard C. Mills. Many members were involved in making this one of the largest attended and best Conferences in the history of the Fraternity.
The Chapter used the proceeds of the 1984 Conference to establish the W. L. Overton Scholarship Fund. Averitt Express was the first donor to the effort and contributed greatly as have many other companies, to the success of the scholarship program, In 1989, Volunteer Chapter #135 made and endowment of $12,000.00 to the University of Tennessee. Additionally, we continue to award scholarships on a Chapter level. In times past, individual awards such as the
Robert H, Beard Professional Award and the Alphian of the Year also recognizes a member’s contribution to the chapter each year.
In the late eighties, Volunteer Chapter became involved in the promotion of National Transportation Week. Some of the activities have included public school awareness of transportation with poster and essay contests and equipment demonstrations, caravan of trucks, honoring safe drivers and facility tours. The first annual Trans-Expo was held in 1996 and proved to be a very successful endeavor. National Transportation Week has always concluded with a Transportation Professional of the Year Award Recipient. Our most recent recipient being Mr. James D. Griffith who accepted his award in May, 2014.
The Volunteer Chapter over the years has won many awards on a national level and many local members have helped further the success of Delta Nu Alpha by serving on national committees. In 1985 Les Overton was chosen as International Secretary / Treasurer of the Year,
In 1989 and 1990, the Chapter established a local transportation library which is still housed at the Tennessee Commercial Warehouse facility in Nashville. The formation of the local library provided the insight for the founding of the National Transportation Library by co-founders, Bill Augelo and Nancy Mason, and Cathy Davis. The Chapter has contributed financially and in advisory capacity to the National Transportation Library which was successful in obtaining the ICC Library. The ICC Library was moved from Washington, DC to they University of Colorado where it is presently housed.
If history repeats itself, Delta Nu Alpha Transportation Fraternity, Volunteer Chapter #135 will remain a strong and viable asset to the Nashville transportation and business community.
The above was the history prepared by Mr. Les Overton and Cathy Davis on the 41st anniversary of Volunteer Chapter 135 which was presented on “Homecoming ” in honor of W. L, Overton on June 4, 1998.
As we all know, the business of transportation has changed since the days of 1998, however, with the help of dedicated members and associates Volunteer Chapter #135 has in fact been able to maintain and we are still the strongest most viable chapter within the Delta Nu Alpha organization.
Last May, 2015, Volunteer Chapter #135 was able to award $16,000.00 in scholarship funds to deserving transportation professionals. We are still keeping the traditions as best we can.