Juan B. Rivera, A Dart Legend, Stops for a Visit to Reminisce on the Past
12 May 2017
(EAGAN, Minn.) – It was 1968 when Juan Rivera, known affectionately as “Bicho” around the Dart Transit Company office, when he decided to get into a truck for the first time and make a career out of it. Born and raised in Puerto Rico, Rivera came to the United States in search of a better life. His motivation and passion is unmistakable as he sat down to visit with us about some of his greatest moments in his trucking career.
It was in 1986 – back when Dart’s office was on University Avenue office in Saint Paul, Minnesota, when Juan found Dart. Juan immediately connected with a myriad of office staff who felt like a part of his family. “That’s when I found a home. To this day, I still absolutely love this company. I’ve never been happier with anyone else. Dart treats you like family,” said Juan as his face lit up with a smile.
Two Dart employees that made an impact were Jim Tammes and Jana Kulseth. “Jim was always there for me. After some health complications in 1998, Jim sent flowers to me when I was in the hospital. He always went above and beyond the scope of his job,” Juan said smiling. “And then there is Jana, the light of my life. She helped me through so much here at Dart. It’s people like her that make Dart the great company it is.”
Jana Kulseth, who worked with Rivera in Dart’s Safety Department, and is now a Claims Assistant in Eagan, said she thinks the same way about him as he thinks about her. “When I hear the name Juan Rivera, it makes me smile – I just can’t help it. Juan took so much pride in the company he drove with and what he did. A true professional, Juan was always pleasant when calling in with issues he was having. Even if the answer wasn’t what he wanted to hear, he would understand and thank you for your time. Juan is a person with a big personality and a big heart.”
Juan doesn’t only have a heart of gold, but also boasts an incredible list of accolades when it comes to his career in the trucking industry. Juan recently stopped by to receive a customized leather jacket for his dedication to Dart before his retirement in 2011. Juan also accumulated more than 2.5 million safe miles in his career – an impressive accomplishment in his career of being an over-the-road truck driver.
During Juan’s visit to Eagan, his smile walking through the office was contagious. He still makes friends wherever he goes. Juan even had the chance to spend a few minutes with Dart Chairman of the Board, Don Oren The two posed for a picture with Juan sporting his beautiful Dart ring as well as the famous pewter Dart truck which signifies 20 years of service.
Now happily retired and enjoying the good life with his wife Beverly back home in Michigan, Juan enjoys catching a good TV show, cooking a delicious meal, or baking sweet treats. Juan has two sons: one who is a ship architect in Washington, D.C., and the other who works for Ford Motor Company in Detroit, Michigan.
Juan’s infectious personality always has been and always will be a staple. His years of service and commitment to Dart certainly did not go unnoticed. We thank Juan for 25 years of exceptional service to the company, customers, and everyone else who was lucky enough to come across his path. We wish Juan well as he continues his journey through retirement.