Chapter Coordinator Award: Dennis Glaeser of EAA Chapter 13
August 23, 2011 – Sharing his passion for aviation is not an issue for EAA Chapter 13’s Young Eagles coordinator, Dennis Glaeser of Rochester Hills, Michigan. He became involved in the chapter in 2005 when he began building an aircraft. When the Young Eagles coordinator left Chapter 13 in 2006, Glaeser saw it as an opportunity to share his passion for flight with others.
“The Young Eagles events grow every year because we have a very involved chapter. We typically have 50 to 60 people at each monthly meeting,” Glaeser said.
Although Ray Community Airport, located in Ray, Michigan, is a small airport, they have no shortage of pilots to fly at their Young Eagles events. Glaeser boasts a group of 15 to 18 active pilots with an average of seven to 12 pilots present at each event and four to five members on grounds crew.
Another aspect of the coordinator that should be noted is his attention to detail and safety. Prior to each Young Eagles event, Glaeser organizes a pilots meeting to discuss traffic patterns. This is especially important because their local airport does not have a parallel taxiway; however, this is about to change. The airport board recently received funding to install taxiways, which will begin construction in the coming weeks.
Prior to Glaeser taking on the role of Young Eagles coordinator, the chapter only held two to three events in the summer, where they flew approximately 20 to 30 Young Eagles. Since that time, the chapter’s Young Eagles events have only grown in popularity. The chapter now hosts one event each month from May through October, where they fly about 100 Young Eagles at each event. The highlight of the summer is when the chapter goes “on the road” to Croswell, Michigan, where they fly 100 to 150 Young Eagles in a different city for their local festival.
Glaeser helps promote the Young Eagles events by sending out e-mails a few weeks before the event to the chapter members, as well as past Young Eagles who are interested in learning more. He also posts information on all local newspapers’ calendar of events pages. The majority of those Young Eagles who fly at the event find out about it through an article that the local newspaper runs before nearly every event. Because Glaeser’s wife is a teacher at a local school, he has also had the opportunity to speak at PTA events and hand out information.