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AOPA President Resigns Position

February 28, 2013 - Craig L. Fuller, president and CEO of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, has notified AOPA's board of trustees that he intends to step down from his position and from the board, AOPA reported Thursday.

According to a news release, Fuller plans to remain in his current role until his successor is ready to assume the position, for which the board will conduct a national search.

Fuller, 62, became AOPA's fourth president on January 1, 2009, succeeding Phil Boyer. As he approaches the fulfillment of a five-year commitment to the organization, Fuller said he is looking forward to taking on new challenges and opportunities.

"I have flown since age 17, and flying has been part of my life ever since," he said. "I will always be grateful to the AOPA board of trustees for having given me the opportunity to serve the general aviation community and AOPA's 385,000 members in a leadership position.

"With the end of my five-year commitment approaching, this is an appropriate time for me to consider new opportunities and allow the board time to recruit a successor."

AOPA Chairman William C. Trimble III said a search committee will be formed shortly and that an executive search firm has been retained.

"During his more than four years as president of AOPA, Craig served nobly and professionally," Trimble said. "He has advocated strongly on behalf of the general aviation community in Washington, built bridges with the other aviation associations, improved member communications, and generated promising ideas for tomorrow.

"We recognize the importance of finding a leader who can continue to inspire all of us in these challenging times. We are focused on finding a leader who shares our vision and convictions as well as the talent and capabilities necessary to achieve our goals."

EAA Chairman Jack Pelton was in Washington, D.C., today with other EAA advocacy officials to meet with AOPA and other GA groups. Pelton praised Fuller's dedication to aviation and his efforts to have EAA and AOPA work closely to benefit GA.

"Craig was instrumental as EAA and AOPA worked closer than ever on important aviation issues ranging from user fees to medical certification," Pelton said. "We wish Craig and AOPA the very best during this transition and we will continue our joint efforts with AOPA as we face the many important challenges to general aviation in the coming months and years."

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