SARATOGA SPRINGS – The New York Association for Pupil Transportation (NYAPT) recently named Linda Malkowski of Monroe One BOCES as its 2022 Driver of the Year. Linda was recognized at the NYAPT Annual Conference held in Saratoga Springs on July 12th for her dedicated, kind, and professional service, superlative driving record, and for selflessly returning from retirement to address the state’s unprecedented school bus driver shortage which significantly impacted Monroe County school districts.
“The New York Association for Pupil Transportation is thrilled to honor Linda Malkowski of Monroe One BOCES as our 2022 School Bus Driver of the Year,” said David Christopher, NYAPT Executive Director. “Linda represents the very best qualities of the 54,000 school bus drivers in New York state who accept one of the greatest responsibilities in our communities – ensuring that the 2.3 million children who ride a yellow bus to and from school each day safely arrive at their destination. Her return to service during a time of unprecedented driver shortages is inspirational and a testament to her lifelong commitment to New York’s children.”
One of the lingering effects of the pandemic that has negatively impacted school districts and private school bus contractors is the lack of school bus drivers. Last year alone, school districts faced a driver shortage of almost 8,000 school bus drivers. The statewide problem has forced many school districts to cancel and delay routes.
In addition to being an experienced driver, Linda serves as a mentor and driver trainer, sharing her extensive experience and professional ethos with the next generation of school bus drivers. Linda’s exceptional skills as a trainer are reflected by her commercial driver’s license trainees having a 100% pass rate with the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles.
About NYAPT: NYAPT is a membership-based professional association incorporated in 1974 as a “501-c-6” non-profit corporation. Our members are employed in school districts, BOCES, community and technical colleges, private school bus operators and community-based programs, and include our industry partners. Our members come from many levels within the school bus industry, including supervisors and managers, mechanics and technicians, trainers and safety specialists, dispatchers and drivers.