Most people wouldn’t think of learning how to drive a truck as a do-it-yourself type of thing, but Reddaway driver Gina Paulus did it all on her own and is now rocking it as the only female truck driver in Henderson, Colorado. Learn more about Gina…
From Stay-at-Home Mom to Truck Driver
Growing up in Denver, Colorado, Gina Paulus was involved in soccer and loved riding motorcycles. After high school she decided to get married and have kids, and became a stay-at-home mom. It came to a point where she wanted to do something to support her family, so she got a job as a flagger where she remained for the next ten years.
She then got a dock worker job at another trucking company, and this is where she realized her passion for driving. After earning her CDL, Gina was lucky enough to have a boss that let her use one of the company trucks to practice driving after hours.
Determined to become a truck driver, Gina spent hours and hours in that parking lot practicing until she felt completely comfortable. But it wasn’t so easy from there – she found it very difficult to get a driving job, mostly because hiring a female driver was a first for most of them.
First Lady of Trucking in Henderson, CO
Reddaway was recommended to Gina through her brother-in-law, and she was hired on as a part-time dock worker in 2009. She soon worked her way up to becoming a local city driver and now makes anywhere from 18 to 21 stops each day. As you can imagine, loading and unloading freight at each pickup or delivery makes for a great physical challenge and workout, and Gina makes sure she gets lots of sleep and stays healthy so that she can be the best she can be on the job.
The customers are without a doubt Gina’s favorite part of her job. Being a local driver, she makes the same stops each day and has come to know and love the customers. Some of them have even taken her to hockey games and given her Christmas presents! This just goes to show that Gina really is a family woman, and is able to make a connection with anyone she meets.
Being one of the only female truck drivers in Colorado, Gina has definitely felt the pressure of working in a male-dominated industry, but most of the guys give her total respect. When someone like Gina loves Reddaway and loves driving as much as she does, there’s no denying that she deserves to be here.
“Earn your respect, and don’t give up,” says Gina to any women out there hankering to get behind the wheel.
Keeping It All In the Family
Gina is the mother of two daughters and a son, and also has two grandchildren. Although her daughters steered clear of the trucking industry, her son is on his way to earning his CDL just like his mom! Even her grandson is fascinated with the tractor trailer and loves to look at it, so perhaps he’ll follow in his grandma’s footsteps later on as well!
Being home nights and weekends gives Gina time to spend with her grandbabies who she can’t get enough of. When she’s not fishing or camping, she’s using her spare time to take her grandkids to Chuck E. Cheese or to local flea markets. You may even catch her jamming out to some Luke Bryan on the way.