For decades, industry leaders Patricia Cowley and Pam Martinez have been making a difference in the motorcoach community. They were honored for their many achievements with awards given by the Women in Buses Council during ABA’s Marketplace earlier this month.
Martinez is the Women in Buses Award 2022 Recipient, and Cowley is the Women in Buses Operational Excellence Award 2022 Recipient. Sponsored by Motor Coach Industries (MCI), the awards were presented by Lynn Marzullo and Pat Ziska.
“Motor Coach Industries is proud to sponsor ABA’s Women in Buses Council and the work they do to bolster the tour and charter industry,” says Lynn Marzullo of MCI. “This year’s award winners, nominated by their industry peers, are two well-respected individuals deserving of this honor for the job they do within their companies as well as with multiple associations to advocate for our industry.”
“I am especially honored to have received the Woman in Buses Award,” Martinez shared in a Facebook post. “A huge thank you for all who were involved in me receiving the award, including MCI for sponsoring the award. It truly means a great deal for me!”
Cowley shared how she is proud, humbled, and honored to receive the award: “My relationships within the bus industry date back to the 90’s from my captive insurance days. It’s so nice to be recognized for the work I do, by an industry I am passionate about. Sadly, I was unable to travel to Texas due to falling ill just days before. At least it wasn’t COVID, again!”
With more than 30 years of finance experience, Cowley has been a Controller, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer at the corporate level and a financial adviser to nonprofit organizations as well. She started her own business a few years back to help nonprofit associations manage their businesses and drive value to their members. She is well-versed in nonprofit board governance. She has served as an officer for the board of the Cooperative Partnership Insurance Co. and currently is the Executive Director for the Greater New Jersey Motorcoach Association, a regional association, and the Pennsylvania Bus Association, a state association.
Cowley engages in all regulatory and legislative concerns on behalf of her members, both at the federal and state levels. In 2020 and 2021, she dedicated a significant amount of time to secure CERTS funding with the “Gang of 11” – a group of operators and vendors across the country who worked together to educate legislators on the value of the private motorcoach industry.
Some other recent highlights, Cowley serves on the Motor Carrier Safety Advisory Council and served on the Pennsylvania Transportation Revenue Options Commission. She believes that keeping members abreast of issues that affect their businesses and creating action plans are the keys to effective advocacy. She also is a member of the Bus Industry Safety Council (BISC) where she recently presented an educational session “Best Practices for Capturing Near Misses and Avoiding Accidents in the Future.” She has also led the organization’s efforts for coalition letters with other state and regional motorcoach associations across the country for CERTS funding, CERTS Tax Exemption and for the Washington D.C. Union Station Redevelopment Project. Early in the pandemic, she managed a social media advocacy toolkit project, yielding interviews and news articles in response to the pandemic.
Martinez is the Vice President of Human Resources and Risk Management for DATTCO Inc. More than half her 39 years in the industry have been with the New Britain, Connecticut, company. Previously, she served as a general manager and corporate treasurer for another transportation company.
She has a Bachelor of Science degree in management from Quinnipiac College and an MBA with a concentration in human resources from the University of New Haven. She also has OSHA 10, 30 and 511 certifications.
Her leadership involvement in organizations is extensive. Martinez is the Chairman of the Bus Industry Safety Council of the American Bus Association and is the immediate past president of the Connecticut Bus Association. She served on the Board of Governors for Quinnipiac University and held the position of Risk Control Chairperson of TRAX Insurance and the Chairman of the Workplace Health and Environmental Safety Committee for the Bus Industry Safety Council for several years. She also held board positions for the Northeast School Transportation Safety Institute, the Connecticut School Transportation Association, the Southington Chamber of Commerce and the Milford Newcomers.
Her vast experience makes Martinez an in-demand speaker on human resources and safety topics for several organizations, including the TRAX Insurance Group, the Bus Industry Safety Council, the American Bus Association, the United Motorcoach Association, the International Motorcoach Group, the UMA Safety Management Seminar and Women in Buses.