New TANS leader looks to advance, strengthen association
March 1, 2007
TRURO, N.S. - After almost two years without a permanent executive director, the Truckers Association of Nova Scotia (TANS) has appointed Matthias Brehmer to the position. Frank Henderson, the former ...
NEW EASTERN LEADER: Matt Brehmer will be bringing his extensive business experience and love of trucking to the table as the new executive director of the Truckers Association of Nova Scotia.
TRURO, N.S. – After almost two years without a permanent executive director, the Truckers Association of Nova Scotia (TANS) has appointed Matthias Brehmer to the position. Frank Henderson, the former owner of Commercial Safety College in Masstown, N.S., had been filling the position since April 2005, following the passing of former executive director Dave Roberts. Brehmer took up his position with the association in January.
“I am looking forward to this opportunity and hope for your support,” Brehmer wrote in an introductory letter to members on the TANS Web site. “I (will) work as hard and efficient for the association as I possibly can and will learn whatever I need to know about the positions and persons in charge, their requirements, but also their duties and liabilities towards the association.”
Brehmer was born, raised and educated in his native Germany. There he received an opportunity for an apprenticeship as an industrial manager and became a business owner at the age of 23 because of the early passing of his parents.
“My father drove trucks in Germany for 27 years,” Brehmer told Truck News. “I wanted to become a trucker, but he always pushed my education, so I could do ‘office work,’ which for him meant a steady, reliable and not as dangerous work environment.” But still, Brehmer was able to drive with his father over the summer months, which helped solidify his love for the industry.
His status as a landed immigrant has also influenced the way he deals with government issues.
“I am, as a landed immigrant, very involved with the government’s treatment of ‘the people.’ I can feel and understand many of the issues that truckers, their families and companies in that field have,” he said.
Brehmer’s business experience is extensive, having been involved as a manager or owner with both small and large companies, and having sat on many boards in various associations prior to his appointment to TANS.
Though Brehmer admits he is concerned for the current state of the trucking industry, he still feels the association is in a good position.
“As other organizations also face reconstruction and new people enter the field with good knowledge and fresh ideas, I hope that we can work out proposals and policies with various government branches that will help the TANS members, their families, the provincial infrastructure, economy and policy structure, and fit the governmental budget, so we can all advance.”
Brehmer says advancing the association is his main target, “as it shows willingness to approach problems, to deal with old and new ideas and to implement policies for the future of our members as businesses and individuals, trucking as a trade and the education and safety of all the people on the road.”
In his new position, Brehmer will be sitting on many boards, including the Nova Scotia Trucking Safety Association, educational associations, business partners, the government and insurance companies, in hopes of encouraging the various branches to work together.
“We have established a network of communication between the various people involved and want to continue to be productive and efficient in our approach,” Brehmer said. “Surely, there are some issues every outlet has to deal with internally and externally, and it’s imminent for every part of this industry to have their own goals as long as we are all interested in the greater welfare of the people and businesses that we work for.”
Brehmer says that as a community of policy-makers, many often forget that they work for individuals and their ideas. He says he intends to focus his attentions on TANS’ 600 members, as well as their families and friends. Brehmer’s other plans for TANS include advancing the communication system, advancing the informational flow, the implementation of new policies and the review of governmental and structural policies.
“I am very thankful to have this opportunity to be of assistance to our members. It’s a well-known but often unappreciated trade. The image has become a bit better over the years, but we still have to pull together and make it a well advertised, interesting and recognized industry,” Brehmer concluded. “These ladies and gentlemen (of trucking) work very hard day in and out, have to deal with weather, traffic, shortfalls on material and fuel increases, the danger of unemployment or government regulations, and the resulting downfall of their business and livelihood on a daily basis and for their entire life. They want understanding, recognition and regulation based on, ‘A fair day’s pay for a hard day’s work.’ To accomplish that, we have to sometimes give to receive and lose a little to gain a lot. That’s the principles of society. And I will do whatever I can, to help them.”