The CEO of the nation’s largest freight broker association announced that he is resigning. This is the same person who published an unusual YouTube video in response to trucker protests. In the video he called critics “snake oil salesmen” and said that truckers and carriers are to blame for low-paying brokered freight, not brokers.
Bob Voltmann has been president and CEO of the Transportation Intermediaries Association (TIA) since 1997. In those 23 years, Voltmann says that TIA grew “from a fledgling organization with weak finances” to being “clearly recognized as the voice of third-party logistics.” TIA claims that they represent 80% of the 3PL market by value.
In that time, TIA also set up a strong lobbying presence. The TIA Political Action Committee donates money to further the interests of TIA members.
When trucker protests were raging outside the White House a few weeks ago, organizers managed to get a meeting with White House officials including the Chief of Staff. The protests also prompted President Trump to say during an interview on Fox and Friends that truckers were being “gouged.”
Voltmann told Freightwaves that he was “stunned” by the claim, saying that the Trump administration had “let them down.”
“They wanted to get attention so they lashed out at the brokers when they should have been lashing out at the Small Business Administration and Congress,” said Voltmann.
Voltmann published a YouTube video where he defended brokers. The unusual video – and Voltmann himself – drew flak from some drivers and carriers. Many took issue with his claim that “brokers don’t set rates. The market does.” Voltmann also called broker pricing “incredibly transparent” and said that average broker margins are 16%.
While Voltmann is stepping down the from TIA in September, he remains the secretary general of the International Federation of Freight Forwarders Associations. The IFFA represents 115 associations like the TIA worldwide and boasts 40,000 member companies.
“While this was a difficult decision for me, I have accomplished everything I was hired to accomplish,” Voltmann said. “It is time for me to continue to change and grow myself by taking on a new challenge and for TIA to transition to a new leader.”