The Coca-Cola Company Pledges $1 Million to Put More Georgia Commercial Truck Drivers on the Road
Published by Technical College System of Georgia, April 19, 2022
Donation to the Technical College System of Georgia Foundation to benefit the Commercial Truck Driving Program
ATLANTA, GA–The Coca-Cola Company today announced a $1 million donation to the Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG) Foundation for its system’s Commercial Truck Driving Program. The Coca-Cola Company also announced “Delivering the Future: The Coca-Cola System & Technical College System of Georgia Truck Tour” to raise awareness of TCSG’s Commercial Truck Driving Program and career opportunities with local bottler Coca-Cola UNITED.
“As residents and businesses across the state work to recover from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is more important than ever to invest in our communities and provide opportunities that will improve the lives of our fellow Georgians,” said Alfredo Rivera, President of The Coca-Cola Company’s North America Operating Unit. “We are proud of our Georgia roots and will continue to do our part to keep Georgia strong.”
Alfredo Rivera, President of The Coca-Cola Company’s North America Operating Unit
Businesses and consumers rely on Georgia’s trucking industry, which moves more than 435 million tons of goods across the state each year as the logistics and transportation hub of the Southeast (Georgia Department of Transportation, 2019). Today, this industry is facing challenges, having lost 6% of its workers nationally since the COVID-19 pandemic began, compounding an existing driver shortage that is expected to top 160,000 by 2028 (American Trucking Associations, 2019).
“Despite the challenges of the last two years, the trucking industry remained steadfast as a foundational driver of the nation’s economy, delivering essential goods to help businesses stay open and to reopen,” said Mark Rahiya, Chief Supply Chain, Technical and Innovation Officer, The Coca-Cola Company. “By supporting TCSG’s Commercial Truck Driving Program trainers and faculty, we’re making sure the next generation of drivers gets a world-class education while simultaneously working to address the driver shortage and provide opportunity for Georgians.”
Mark Rahiya, Chief Supply Chain, Technical and Innovation Officer, The Coca-Cola Company
The $1 million investment marks The Coca-Cola Company’s latest effort to help facilitate Georgia’s economic development and support critical job training and opportunities across its home state. By creating 11 new full-time instructor roles and two part-time instructor roles, the investment supports TCSG’s greatest need, recruiting and retaining talented trainers. In addition, the donation supplements the $8.32 million of support from the Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Fund (GEER II) that will provide facility upgrades, with the goal of doubling enrollment of commercial drivers across Georgia from 1,705 to 3,410 in 2023. Finally, this investment aims to ensure more drivers are in the pipeline to help fill trucking industry jobs with local Coca-Cola bottler Coca-Cola UNITED and other businesses across the state.
“We are grateful for our partnership with The Coca-Cola Company and Coca-Cola UNITED and look forward to leveraging this investment to attract more best-in-class trainers who are the foundation of our program,” said Greg Dozier, Commissioner, Technical College System of Georgia. “With the expansion of the program, this investment will allow us to prepare more commercial truck drivers to enter the industry, helping to ensure the continued transport of goods upon which we rely across the state.”
Greg Dozier, Commissioner, Technical College System of Georgia
Delivering the Future: The Coca-Cola System & Technical College System of Georgia Truck Tour – Savannah, Athens, Vidalia, Macon, and Tifton
To raise awareness of TCSG’s Commercial Truck Driving Program and related career opportunities, The Coca-Cola Company is rolling out the “Delivering the Future: The Coca-Cola System & Technical College System of Georgia Truck Tour.”
“The Coca-Cola truck will make stops in five communities across the state, including Savannah, Athens, Vidalia, Macon, and Tifton,” said Gianetta Jones, Vice President and Chief People Officer, Coca-Cola UNITED. “In Georgia, we’re fortunate to be able to hire drivers from TCSG’s world-class Commercial Truck Driving Program. Our goal is to raise awareness of the program and trucking industry opportunities available right in our home state, most specifically the 85 open commercial driving opportunities currently available with Coca-Cola UNITED.”
The “Delivering the Future: The Coca-Cola System & Technical College System of Georgia Truck Tour” will make five stops from May 17 to May 26 and will offer entertainment, refreshments, and activities along with the opportunity to learn about Coca-Cola UNITED job opportunities and TCSG’s Commercial Truck Driving Program enrollment process. Tour stops and dates include:
- Tuesday, May 17 – Southeastern Technical College, Vidalia Campus
- Wednesday, May 18 – Central Georgia Technical College, Macon Campus
- Thursday, May 19 – Savannah Technical College, Savannah Campus
- Wednesday, May 25 – Athens Technical College, Athens Campus
- Thursday, May 26 – Southern Regional Technical College, Tifton Campus
Complete tour details can be found at DeliveringTheFutureGA.com.
The Coca-Cola Company, alongside Coca-Cola UNITED, has generated a positive economic impact in Georgia for more than 135 years. Today, with more than 30 Coca-Cola facilities across the state employing more than 9,400 Georgians, the System provides beverages for more than 41,000 Georgia businesses that offer daily refreshment for the state’s 10.5 million residents.
In addition to helping grow Georgia’s economy and supporting job opportunities for Georgians, The Coca-Cola Company has invested $13.8 million in Georgia since 2016 to improve community wellbeing, empower women, and protect the environment where employees live and work. In addition, The Coca-Cola Foundation has invested $105 million since 2016 to support youth development and education, female entrepreneurs, access to clean water, water conservation, and recycling programs across the state.
About The Coca-Cola Company
The Coca-Cola Company (NYSE: KO) is a total beverage company with products sold in more than 200 countries and territories. Our company’s purpose is to refresh the world and make a difference. We sell multiple billion-dollar brands across several beverage categories worldwide. Our portfolio of sparkling soft drink brands includes Coca-Cola, Sprite, and Fanta. Our hydration, sports, coffee, and tea brands include Dasani, smartwater, vitaminwater, Topo Chico, BODYARMOR, Powerade, Costa, Georgia, Gold Peak, Honest, and Ayataka. Our nutrition, juice, dairy, and plant-based beverage brands include Minute Maid, Simply, innocent, Del Valle, fairlife, and AdeS. We’re constantly transforming our portfolio, from reducing sugar in our drinks to bringing innovative new products to market. We seek to positively impact people’s lives, communities, and the planet through water replenishment, packaging recycling, sustainable sourcing practices, and carbon emissions reductions across our value chain. Together with our bottling partners, we employ more than 700,000 people, helping bring economic opportunity to local communities worldwide. Learn more at www.coca-colacompany.com and follow us on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn.
About Coca-Bottling Company United, Inc.
Coca-Cola Bottling Company United, Inc., founded in 1902 and headquartered in Birmingham, Alabama, is the second largest privately held Coca-Cola bottler in North America and the third largest bottler of Coca-Cola products in the U.S. Now with its fifth generation of family working in the business, Coca-Cola UNITED has approximately 10,000 associates located in more than 50 facilities across six southeastern states (Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Tennessee). Historically significant franchises within our Coca-Cola UNITED family include Chattanooga, the world’s first Coca-Cola bottler; Atlanta, home of the worldwide Coca-Cola System; and Columbus, Georgia, development site of the original Coca-Cola formula.
Coca-Cola UNITED is engaged in the production, marketing, and distribution of a diverse portfolio of leading sparkling (Coca-Cola®, Diet Coke®, Coke Zero Sugar®, Dr Pepper®, Sprite®, AHA® and Fanta®) and still (smartwater®, Dasani®, POWERADE®, BODYARMOR®, Fairlife®, Gold Peak®, Monster® and Minute Maid®) non-alcoholic brands under exclusive franchise agreements principally with The Coca-Cola Company® and Keurig Dr Pepper®.
For 120 years, Coca-Cola UNITED has remained true to its foundational core values of Quality, Excellence, Integrity, and Respect. Local relationships, personalized customer service, and strong community engagement have been the foundation of our business for more than a century. Each year, millions of dollars are invested in our local communities, supporting education, community development, sustainability, and nonprofit organizations that empower and impact those in need. For more information, visit cocacolaunited.com.
About the Technical College System of Georgia
The 22 colleges of the Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG) are Georgia’s top resource for skilled workers. TCSG offers world-class training in more than 600 associate degree, diploma, and certificate programs to students who are trained on state-of-the-art equipment by instructors who are experts in their fields. The system also houses Georgia’s Office of Adult Education, which promotes and provides adult literacy and education programs, including the GED® testing program, throughout the state. In addition, TCSG partners with companies through Quick Start, the nation’s top customized workforce training program, and through its individual colleges, which work with local industry to provide workforce and training solutions. For more information, visit www.tcsg.edu.