Wheels of Fortune

Logistics employment agency supports local charities

By Jessica Laskey
December 2020

Trucking and charity might seem like an unlikely pair. But for Desiree Caldwell Amaral—founder, owner and director of operations for Elite HR Logistics—helping people find lifelong careers and giving back to her community have always been inextricably linked.

For the past 20 years, Sacramento-based Elite HR Logistics has worked with numerous nonprofits, especially those focused on helping children, while simultaneously growing into one of California’s premiere employment agencies for all kinds of industries across seven states.

In 1998, after years in ad sales, Caldwell Amaral decided to switch careers and discovered an affinity for recruitment—particularly for jobs in the trucking industry.

“It was such a different feel talking to trucking clients,” Caldwell Amaral says. “They were more down to earth. There was no sugar coating. We were able to talk about family and build relationships. It wasn’t just about a contract.”

Caldwell Amaral joined the California Trucking Association in 2001—where she was “the only female in the room”—and started her recruitment company shortly thereafter, which has since diversified from truck driving to include jobs in management, office personnel and various warehouse opportunities. While growth has certainly always been part of Caldwell Amaral’s plan, so has been sharing her success with those in need.

“Each year, we look at different areas we feel could use our resources and make it our goal to give back to the local community any way that we can,” Caldwell Amaral says.

Since 2002, Elite HR Logistics has provided Thanksgiving dinners to Sacramento Children’s Home and donated bikes, helmets, bedding and Secret Santa gifts at the holidays to bring the “simple pleasures of comfort to all the kids of every age group,” Caldwell Amaral says. That same year, the company started sponsoring CTA’s annual California Trucking Competition, which promotes driver safety.

Since 2007, Caldwell Amaral and her staff have partnered with the U.S. Postal Service’s Operation Santa to fulfill holiday wishes from “Dear Santa” letters written by local children in need.

In 2015, Elite HR Logistics joined the Sacramento Rainbow Chamber of Commerce to provide scholarships for graduating high school students who may not have the support at home to get them to the next stage of their academic careers.

For the past two years, Elite HR has participated in the Sacramento Food Bank’s Turkey Drive and Union Gospel Mission’s Thanksgiving dinners for the homeless, and has donated to WEAVE and environmental organizations addressing ocean cleanup and overfishing.

This year, Caldwell Amaral says she’s shifted her focus to adapting to needs in the community that have arisen due to the pandemic. To that end, the company is continuing its usual charity work, but added an additional effort around the holidays to provide 25 families with a meal from a local restaurant. Elite HR Logistics posted a call on its website and social media for letters about people who have been someone’s “rock or hero” this year for a chance to receive a meal.

“2020 has been an extraordinarily tough year for everyone,” Caldwell Amaral says. “Many families are still struggling to make ends meet. In an effort to relieve some of the stress and add some happy memories, we’re hoping to help families in need…and make this season a little brighter.”

For more information, visit elitehrlogistics.com.

Jessica Laskey can be reached at jessrlaskey@gmail.com. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @insidesacramento.

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