GA joins together at inaugural AOPA Summit
By Dave Higdon for EAA.org
Tom Poberezny appeared with AOPA’s Craig Fuller during the AOPA Summit Thursday.
November 5, 2009 — TAMPA, Florida – The main ballroom of the Tampa Convention Center filled to near capacity Thursday for the opening session of AOPA’s inaugural Aviation Summit. The audience heard familiar views from the unique panel of aviation-group executives who participated in a discussion on general aviation’s challenges and strengths under the theme, “One Voice.”
Led by AOPA President Craig Fuller, the panel included EAA President Tom Poberezny, NBAA President Ed Bolen, GAMA President Pete Bunce, NATA President Jim Coyne, WIA President Peggy Chabrian, and AEA President Paula Derks.
The consensus message of the One Voice session: general aviation faces many challenges, but by pulling together and working with Congress the community will survive and, one day, again thrive.
During his early afternoon appearance on AOPA’s Center Stage live video interview, Poberezny noted to Fuller and the audience that efforts to promote flying, encourage youngsters under the Young Eagles program, and its support for the LSA movement are all important elements of EAA’s mission.
In his mid-afternoon session, FAA Administrator Randy Babbitt and FAA COO Hank Krakowski addressed a range of topics, from the improved relationship with air-traffic controllers to the need for Congress to pass a reauthorization bill with a higher public-funds contribution and a stable funding mechanism from the flying community.
Meanwhile, politics and industry issues gave way to industry news, with several key product announcements, including the debut of Garmin’s new Aera line of touch-screen portable GPS navigators, the new DFC90 digital attitude-based autopilot from Avidyne, and PSEngineering’s latest variant of its groundbreaking audio-control system in the form of the new PMA6000B.
The EAA “Share The Spirit” Sweepstakes grand prize Aviat Husky A-1C is on display at Peter O. Knight Airport in Tampa during the AOPA Summit.
There will be more to come from AOPA Summit in the coming days, so stay on this frequency.