GE Aviation plans to make an announcement at Strother Field in Cowley County next week that’s significant enough to attract the governor and U.S. House Rep. Mike Pompeo.
The Kansas Department of Commerce said in an advisory Thursday that Gov. Sam Brownback and Pompeo will speak at the announcement, set for 10 a.m. Monday.
The advisory provided no details about the nature of the event. But it did indicate that speakers would also include Jorge Perez, GE Aviation plant leader at Strother Field, and GE business operations executive Jason Fuller.
GE Aviation officials did not respond to e-mails and phone calls for more information on Thursday.
Kerri Falletti, director of community and economic development for Cowley County, said Thursday there is “nothing I can add to that at this time.”
She said GE Aviation employs about 700 people at Strother Field, which sits halfway between Winfield and Arkansas City on the west side of U.S. 77.
“It is one of our largest employers,” Falletti said.
She said GE has been operating in Cowley County since 1951.
The facility is one of multiple sites worldwide for GE Aviation, which provides jet and turboprop engines, components and systems for commercial, military, business and general aviation aircraft.
Strother Field was previously a training base for the Army Air Corps in World War II. After the war, its ownership was turned over to the cities of Winfield and Arkansas City.
It currently serves as an airport and 1,600-acre industrial park. Businesses at the park employ about 1,200 people, Falletti said.