2018 SCDTSEA Conference Highlights

Previous Image
Next Image

info heading

info content

2018 SCDTSEA Award Winners
ADTSEA Curriculum Winner
Commercial Teacher of the YearTina Dodd, Drive Alert Academy


Commercial School of the YearMr. Mike’s Driving School


Traffic Safety Officer of the YearLance Corporal Joe Hovis, SCHP


Driver Education Teacher of the YearDonald Addis, Whitmire Highschool


Award of AppreviationColonel Kevin Shwedo, Director of SCDMV


Award of AppreviationJulie Sabbadino


Award of AppreviationLester Johnson


Friend of SCDTSEARick Todd, SCTA


Outstanding Leadership AwardRichard Chidester, AAA


SCDTSEA AwardJanice Cowen


Poster Contest

Update 2019 SCDTSEA Conference

Dear Driver & Traffic Safety Specialists,

I know you would want the latest information for the 2019 SCDTSEA Conference. It will be December 6 at Blythewood’s SCDMV. Hope you will make plans to attend. This year the officers cannot get into the building until 8:30 Friday morning so the conference will start later than in the past. So far committed speakers are the following:

  • Bill Rhyne, SCDPS Speaker
  • Office of Highway Safety & Justice Programs, John Westerhold, Director
  • Terecia Wilson, past DOT and current professor at Clemson University

Two other speakers that have been invited include Andy Pilgrim of the Traffic Safety Education Foundation and SLED Chief Mark Keel. 

Pray for Dr. Harry Stille. He just got home from life-threatening surgeries and is in the process of recuperating. I know an encouraging card would be appreciated (P. O. Box 203, Due West, SC 29639). 

The DUI-E proposal is getting closer to becoming law. Continue to support this! One SCDTSEA proposal that I hope will be considered is having a city/county/state ordinance that limbs/branches hiding traffic signs and creating blind spots for motorists should be removed. Perhaps a warning for the property owner to do such in a certain amount of time or the city/county/state could do so if not done

My seeing the DWI poster board that one just blew $10,000 for the first offense got me wondering how much it really is. I also felt that teens would simply think such a sign is a “scare tactic” and not reality. At any rate I did some research and prepared a handout for my students regarding the average costs for the first offense (without a crash). You may want to use such. Oh, remember the drinking and driving poster contest for your 2019 students (info given earlier and on our website).

Professionalism is striving for quality in all that we do.  I will close with a few quotations:

“Put your heart into your work, and the quality of your work will put heart into you.”
“Quality — there are no small mistakes.  If it’s wrong, it’s wrong.”
“It’s one thing to work for a living; it’s another thing to work for a cause.”  –Dr. Bob Jones.
“The work in life is learning to be excited about your work.”  –Charles F. Jones.

Best regards,

Joe Sabbadino

Letter from President Elect Regarding the November 30 SCDTSEA Conference

Dear Driver & Traffic Safety Education Colleagues,

The SCDTSEA Conference’s theme is Safety First. Click here to download the conference information, along with conference/membership forms and the safety poster contest.

A message from SCDTSEA President Andrew Johnson:
“Members of SCDTSEA who recruit a new member, and both attend our upcoming conference, will be eligible to participate in a drawing to win a complete Driver Training
Curriculum from ADTSEA, with DVDs, etc.”

As always, the conference attendance bags will be full of very helpful teaching information. The ones at the last conference will remember Andy Pilgrim’s presentation about working on an “Awareness Driving Techniques For Today” DVD. It is complete and one will be in each attendee’s conference bag. I have looked at it and feel it is the best Defensive Driving teaching tool since the father of defensive driving prepared “Smith System of Space Cushion Driving”!!

It is always a “shot in the arm” to attend a professional conference geared to help the professionals. SCDTSEA has sought to be that way since the founding of it.

I seem to be known for writing long letters/emails. I will close with something that I worked up while in a class with Dr. Charles McDaniel about professionalism:

Professionalism isn’t simply having high degrees — it’s being of a higher breed;
It isn’t simply teaching for years — it’s teaching for quality;
It isn’t haughty pride — it’s humbling service;
It isn’t talk — it’s action; and
It isn’t promises — it’s performances.


Yours for Safety,


Joe Sabbadino

Looking Ahead to the 2018 SCDTSEA Conference

Dear Colleagues,

We are working to have the November 30, 2018 SCDTSEA Conference at Blythewood’s SCDMV as good as can be. Registration/membership forms will be emailed to you in August or September, but I hope you will now reserve that date for the conference! One thing that we did want to attach for you is the poster contest information. It was sent out in January, but you may have lost the information. One new addition to this is, the teacher of the 1st winner will get $50 and a plaque. I hope that you can get some of your students to do safety posters for this contest and the top three will be rewarded with cash prizes.

Thank you for supporting the DUI-E bill. Although action was not taken this year, Representative Bill Taylor will present it again next year. If you are interested in making contact, his email is In regards to this subject, a most helpful PA for your teaching would be found by going to the internet and typing in “Your Last Text Texting While Driving.”

You may want to get on the mailing list of a few places that I consider very helpful in my teaching. One is getting the daily fatality reports in SC. You can make such a request to Beth Lancaster, SC Dept. of Public Safety, at BethLancaster@SCDPS.Gov. Another very helpful resource is receiving the SC Insurance Association’s daily reports. You can make such a request by going to

Some of you have found it most helpful to have a guest speaker from the SC Department of Public Safety. In my area, Joe Hovis does a great job. I had him speak last week. His email is

I am in the Greenville area. If you are a long ways from here, contact Bill Rhyne and he can let you know who to contact for your area. Bill’s email is By the way, Bill will be one of the conference speakers and I have asked him to give a presentation like they would if it was at your school. Nothing complements our teaching and makes even more of a difference with the young people! In mentioning a guest speaker, I have been corresponding with Kim Conyers at State Farm and they would love to have a one of their people speak at your school talking about insurance. If that is an interest, email her at

May some of the above be helpful. I have felt that we all need more help in giving the best BTW instruction for the short time that we have. It was a concern of mine when taking courses to prepare for teaching driver and traffic safety education. I attended several universities in preparing to teach driver education/driver training (Univ of SC, Univ of GA, Texas A & M, and got my Masters in Driver and Traffic Safety Education Safety Education at Appalachian State University), but felt I still needed better training for the BTW. A speaker or two at the SCDTSEA Conference will give some great tips to help us provide better BTW instruction. For now, I will share some tips from how I teach BTW. The best way to teach student skills is to start with simple before complex maneuvers. Don’t be guilty of starting with parallel parking and working with students on it for hours!! I start off-road to help students get used to the vehicle, starting, stopping, smooth stops, turning and judgment stops. I may be the only one who tries to have two students in the vehicle so there can also be good learning from observation (required for high school driver education courses). This helps for faster learning — of course, observation time does not count as in-car time. Then I start on-road with tracking and then scanning (defensive driving procedures). By the way, I have pre-planned routes for every type of driving. Next I select a few good blocks to practice right and left turns, curb parks and 3-Pt turns. Now I feel the students are ready for freeway, city and mountain driving. Finally, I do the most complexed maneuver of parallel parking since the students now would have the best judgment, speed control, etc. After that, I will have them drive to practice what would be on the license test. With detailed planning like this, often I have students that still have more driving time to complete the six hours of BTW! Try this procedure if you aren’t and you will find that it will make a big difference!

Some of you are also coaches. A few driving quotations relating to what you also do:

In football a safety means two points.  In driving safety means your life. — Captain Billy Fallaw.

In basketball your goal is to score and in driving your goal is to arrive alive. — Donny Harrison.

Driving is like baseball.  It’s the number of times you reach home safely that counts.

Best regards,


Joe Sabbadino



Michelin Teams with Vans to Create Limited-Edition Classics to Help Improve Teen Driving Safety


Michelin’s launch of their new phase of Beyond the Driving Test with their limited-edition Michelin-inspired Vans and their Street Tread Contest. A newly released survey of U.S. teens conducted by Michelin North America in seven major U.S. cities reveals that 42 percent are driving with unsafe tire tread, and 40 percent are driving with improper tire pressure. To address this serious threat to the nation’s youngest drivers, Michelin is expanding its Beyond the Driving Test program. In this new phase of Beyond the Driving Test, Michelin aims to reach 1 million teen drivers with its #StreetTreadContest. To help further tell the story of the campaign, youth culture brand Vans partnered with Michelin to design limited-edition versions of Vans Classic Sk8-Hi and Old Skool shoes. ADTSEA supports Michelin’s efforts to reduce crashes and young driver fatalities.

To acquire one of the limited-edition Michelin-inspired Vans, teens must prove their street tread by sharing a photo showing that they know how to check a tire’s tread depth using a penny and/or know how to check tire pressure. Michelin will select 100 teen drivers throughout the summer, and the exclusive, limited-edition sneakers will be delivered to winners of the #StreetTreadContest after students return to school in the fall. Please share this with driving schools, driving instructors and teens through email, social media and website. To learn about critical tire safety checks and how to enter the #StreetTreadContest for a pair of limited-edition Vans, visit For the full press release click here.

South Carolina DUI-E Legislation

Board member Lance Collins was recently interviewed by Fox Carolina to discuss the new distracted driving bill sponsored by Representative Bill Taylor. The bill prohibits the use of any electronic device while driving, no matter if the operator is texting, calling, or even just touching the device. Motorists who drive under the influence of an electronic device will face a $100 fine for their first offense, and $300 per subsequent offense. Read Fox’s coverage of the story here.

Please do your part to support this bill and help make our roads safer.

SCDTSEA Leadership at South East Region ADTSEA Award Banquet

South East Region ADTSEA Award Banquet

From Left to Right:

  1. 2018 Award Recipients
    • Volunteer – Betty Carlyle
    • SER Award – Sylvia Sutton
    • (July 2018) ADTSEA Richard Kayward Award – Connie Sessoms
    • Bishop Seals – Gary King
    • Tom Love – Albert Neal (also awarded to SCDTSEA board member Joe Sabbadino in 2011)
  2. Tom Love Award to Albert Neal
  3. Albert Neal
  4. Andy Pilgrim and Albert Neal
  5. Albert Neal and Reggie Flythe
  6. Reggie Flythe, Andy Pilgrim, Albert Neal
  7. Harold Fleming and Albert Neal
  8. Albert Neal
  9. The SC table at the Banquet

2018 SCDTSEA Poster Contest Details

Dear DTSE Colleagues,

The theme for the 2018 SCDTSEA Conference is SAFETY FIRST and the subject for the poster safety contest is SEAT BELTS (check the attached for more information). May many of your students take part in the poster contest! The SCDTSEA Officers and Board members decided they would like the 2018 SCDTSEA Conference to be November 30 and the alternate date December 7. More information will be shared later when we are assured of the conference site and date.

Representative Bill Taylor has proposed DUI-E legislation to have a higher fine for anyone while driving under the influence of electronics. The texting penalty now is $25 and the desire is to raise this to $100. A hearing is expected soon on H.4480. I know that we will all want to support this.

One colleague at the last conference asked me how I helped inspire my students to get involved in the student poster safety contest. First, you need to believe in and use good safety posters (I use different subjects in each of my classroom sessions). It is not mandatory for students to do posters, but I do find themes on the poster safety topic and prepare a handout for my students. This helps to get them started. Go to the Internet and find quotations/themes on seat belts and share!

One of the best ways to make “Safety First” is by teaching and emphasizing the use of seat belts. Main objectives of our teaching this should be to:

  • persuade students so effectively that safety belts should be worn that they, in turn, will convince their family and friends to do so
  • provide information on how safety belts save lives and reduce serious injuries in vehicle crashes
  • demonstrate the need for safety belts to retain control of the vehicle in emergency situations
  • give practice on the correct use of seat belts
  • increase recognition that since many crashes happen close to home, safety belts must be worn at all times, even on short trips
  • create a positive attitude toward wearing seat belts

The bottom line is to have increased safety belt use among new drivers, their families and friends to have a safer highway environment for us all.

Some of you may remember Captain Billy Fallaw. He was a DTSE leader that helped found SCDTSEA. He was one of my main safety mentors. A good way to close is by using one of his speech outlines in his talk “Let’s Plant a ‘Safety Garden'”:

  • Plant a row of peas — PATIENCE
  • Plant a row of squash — SPEED
  • Plant a row of lettuce — LET US OBEY ALL RULES AND REGULATIONS
  • Plant a row of turnips — TURN UP ALIVE.

Best regards,


Joe Sabbadino

See below for poster contest details

2017 SCDTSEA Conference Highlights

Previous Image
Next Image

info heading

info content

2017 SCDTSEA Award Winners
Award Winner
Commercial Teacher of the Year Barry Avant, Coaches Driving Academy, Moncks Corner, SC

Commercial School of the Year Auto Safe Driving School
Lance F. Collins, Owner VP of Operations
Safety Administrator of the Year Cindy L. Hutto, Master Examiner, SCDMV

Traffic Safety Officer of the Year Candace Rosado, SCDMV Inspector Inspector III, Office of Inspector General

Driver Education Teacher of the Year Kevin Carr—Chapman High School Spartanburg, SC

Poster Contest
1st place, Emily Smith, Sabbadino Driving School LLC, Taylors ($300)
2nd place, Leah Buffalino, Sabbadino Driving School LLC, Taylors ($200)
3rd place, Emma Fordham, Sabbadino Driving School LLC, Taylors ($100)