John Leslie had been a truck driver for the Connecticut Department of Transportation for 33 years, rising to the rank of general supervisor at a garage for a DOT facility on Interstate 95 during the course of his career.
"I guess you could say I trained my fair share of drivers through the years," Leslie said with a smile.
Leslie was among the applicants seeking employment as a driving instructor Thursday afternoon, during All-Star Driver's Job Fair at its location at 601 Main Street in Monroe. The fair began at 2 p.m. and will go on until 7 p.m.
Christine Santara, marketing director for All-Star, said the business wants to hire 35 full- and part-time driving instructors for its locations in Monroe, Norwalk and Westport. All-Star also contracts to teach classes in high schools, including Fairfield Ludlowe, Darien and Newtown.
All-Star is enjoying rapid growth, according to Brandon Dufour, the general manager, who said the business has entered into contracts to lease class space at eight high schools over the past three months.
This is the first time All-Star is hosting a job fair, Dufour said.
Of the decision to organize a fair, he said, "It was the volume and we've been doing more traditional interviews without much luck. We wanted to see if, by using a new method, we could find the type of people we were looking for. We're hoping to get a good turnout."
When asked what kind of applicants he is looking for, Dufour said, "Either traffic safety professionals, people with a passion for teaching or both. We usually get retired teachers and police officers. These are also great jobs for someone out of college with a teaching degree, who is having a hard time finding a teaching job."
Dufour interviewed job candidates with the help of Chris Gombos and Lauren Bitterman.
Bitterman, who is director of curriculum and instruction and has been with All-Star over the past year, said, "It's a fun and creative environment."
Anyone who is interested in a position at All-Star Driver, but missed the job fair, can call the school at (800) 732-8090 to apply.