Press Releases
Governor Dunleavy Declares May ‘Aviation Appreciation Month’
May 28, 2019
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  • Today, national general aviation organizations applauded Governor Mike Dunleavy for declaring May “Aviation Appreciation Month.” In Alaska, the aviation industry contributes $3.8 billion to Alaska’s economy annually.

    “General aviation, local airports and airstrips, are an important lifeline for communities all across Alaska,” said Selena Shilad, executive director of the Alliance for Aviation Across America. “For people living in these communities, general aviation often serves as the primary means of transportation, supporting jobs and driving local economic activity. We thank Governor Dunleavy for issuing this proclamation and recognizing the value of aviation.”

    Mark Baker, president and CEO of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association said, “There are 400 public-use general aviation airports throughout Alaska, and 82 percent of Alaskan communities are not connected to the road system. Aviation, and general aviation aircraft in particular, play an important role in transporting medical supplies, fuel, food, and other resources to communities that lack effective road or ferry service.”

    Ed Bolen, president and CEO of the National Business Aviation Association said, “Alaska’s unique geography results in an even greater reliance among businesses, farms and industries on general aviation to transport goods and personnel. General aviation, including business aviation, is a critical asset for companies to transport personnel, tools and reach far-off plants and locations. We are grateful for Governor Dunleavey’s proclamation, which highlights the importance of general aviation, including business aviation.” 

    “General aviation supports jobs, helps to attract and retain local businesses, and allows companies to connect to urban areas and compete globally,” said Gary Dempsey, president of the National Air Transportation Association. “NATA and its member companies appreciate the Governor’s proclamation and look forward to working to highlight the importance of general aviation for communities and the economy.”

    “General aviation and local airports are critical to supporting communities across Alaska,” said Matt Zuccaro, president and CEO of the Helicopter Association International. “Helicopters have flown in Alaska since before it became a state, and helicopters continue to serve its citizens through a variety of missions, such as petroleum exploration support, wildlife management, and search and rescue. We appreciate the Governor’s proclamation, which helps to raise awareness about aviation, including the value of general aviation.”

    Jack Pelton, CEO of the Experimental Aircraft Association said, “General aviation serves as an inspiration for many and helps to encourage our next generation of pilots and enthusiasts. We thank the Governor for issuing this proclamation, which helps to promote interest in flying and raises awareness about the importance of general aviation.” 

    “Local airports and general aviation are a crucial part of our transportation network, particularly in a state like Alaska,” said Shelly Simi, president and CEO of National Association of State Aviation Official. “We thank Governor Dunleavy for issuing this proclamation, and look forward to working with him and John Binder, Deputy Commissioner of Aviation with the Alaska Department of Transportation & Public Facilities, on issues related to local airports and general aviation.”

    According to the proclamation:

    “Aviation is a critical part of Alaskan life. Eighty-two percent of Alaska’s communities are inaccessible by road and rely heavily on aviation to provide all-season access for commerce, transportation, emergency medical services, shipment of goods, and tourism.”

    To view the proclamation click, here.

    Formed in 2007, the Alliance for Aviation Across America is a non-profit, non-partisan coalition of over 6,300 individuals representing businesses, agricultural groups, FBO’s, small airports, elected officials, charitable organizations, and leading business and aviation groups that support the interests of the general aviation community across various public policy issues.