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November 11, 2009

2009 Texas General Aviation Summit a Success!

General aviation leaders from across Texas and the nation met in Austin, Texas, to address the challenges facing GA today. The one–day event was held on November the 7th at the Hyatt Regency on Lady Bird Lake.

Hyatt Regency on Lady Bird Lake

The Texas Aviation Association hosts the annual event which is co-sponsored by the aviation division of the Texas Department of Transportation, the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, the National Business Aviation Association, the Aviation and Space Foundation of Texas, Slack and Davis aviation law, and the Valero Energy aviation team.


The summit began at 8:30 AM with registration where coffee and croissants were served.
View TGAS Program       View TGAS Welcome        View TGAS Speakers
 

AOPA regional representative Shelly deZevallos, NBAA regional representative Steve Hadley, TXAA chairman Jay Carpenter and NBAA VP Steve Brown helped sponsor the 2009 Texas General Aviation Summit

AOPA regional representative Shelly deZevallos, NBAA regional representative Steve Hadley, TXAA chairman Jay Carpenter and NBAA VP Steve Brown helped sponsor the
2009 Texas General Aviation Summit

TXAA management committee chairman Jay Carpenter opened the day’s program by welcoming the audience to Austin. He then introduced the Summit’s moderator, Paul Smith. Paul is the former regional representative of NBAA and lives in Georgetown, Texas. He is the president of Paul Smith Aviation located at the Georgetown Municipal Airport and serves on the board of directors of TXAA.

 

Smith introduced the first speaker, David Fulton, director of the aviation division at TxDOT. Fulton gave his top seven issues facing GA (loosely based on David Letterman’s Top Ten routine). His lists of issues started with point number one: Educating the non-flying public and elected officials on the value and benefits of GA.

He also spoke about the importance of a state-wide network for GA support which includes a well funded state aviation agency and a state-wide aviation association such as TXAA. Fulton emphasized the importance of developing aviation education programs that will attract youth to aviation careers.

 

View Dave Fulton presentation

 

Texas Airports Council Vice President John Happ and TxDOT Aviation’s director Dave Fulton confer with the audience
Texas Airports Council Vice President John Happ and TxDOT Aviation’s director Dave Fulton confer with the audience

     

Next, Smith introduced the regional representative from NBAA, Steve Hadley who resides in Waco. Hadley spoke of the need to educate pilots and GA enthusiasts about the importance of keeping governmental bodies such as the Transportation Security Agency and Homeland Security aware of the needs and benefits of GA. He gave a progress report about the relaxing of proposed TSA rules that were detrimental to larger and heavier business aircraft.

Hadley’s presentation was followed by Mike Nicely. Nicely works in the Airport Development office of the Federal Aviation Administration in Ft. Worth. He spoke of the National Plan of Integrated Airports Systems, the Airport Improvement Program (AIP), the American Recovery & Reinvestment Act (ARRA) and GA System Planning.
     

NBAA rep Steve Hadley and FAA Airport Development officer Mike Nicely converse during the panel discussion

 

In 2005, Texas received AIP funding totaling $243 million, $55 million funneled through TxDOT. By 2009 that total is expected to be $290 million, $60.4 million of which distributed through TxDOT.

NBAA rep Steve Hadley and FAA Airport Development
officer Mike Nicely converse during the panel discussion

   
     

After a short break, the program continued with Tim Schroeder, ATO-E, Central Service Area, Surveillance and Broadcast Services, FAA in Washington, D.C.  The FAA plans to implement a new system of aircraft surveillance and separation using Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B). ADS-B is a crucial component of the nation's Next-Generation Air Transportation System, and its implementation over the next 20 years will turn the NextGen vision into a reality. With ADS-B, both pilots and controllers will see radar-like displays with highly accurate traffic data from satellites – displays that update in real time and don't degrade with distance or terrain. The system will also give pilots access to weather services, terrain maps and flight information services. The new system will require equipment upgrades in all aircraft flying in class A, B and C airspaces. Schroeder emphasized that with competitive companies making the products, prices should decrease over time.
View Tim Schroeder presentation

The morning session concluded with the keynote speaker, Mr. Steve Brown. Brown is the Senior Vice President of Operations, National Business Aviation Association and resides in Washington, D.C. He incorporated into his speech the four initiatives created by audience participation from last year’s Texas GA Summit, called GAP-T. Government regulations, Airport development, Public relations and Training / education. Brown spoke how TXAA has cooperated with NBAA and AOPA concerning TSA issues and FAA reauthorization. Brown claims that through cooperation between various aviation associations, GA’s future looks bright.
View Steve Brown presentation
 

The audience was treated to a steak dinner provided by the banquet department of the Hyatt Regency.

 

During the conclusion of lunch, Carpenter then introduced Carol Foy. Foy, along with her associate Carol Ann Garratt broke a world speed record by flying around the earth westbound in just over seven days. Foy intrigued the audience with tales of her adventure flying a Mooney single engine aircraft around the world. She and her partner were on a mission to raise funds and awareness for the ALS Foundation. ALS, or Lou Gehrig’s disease, afflicts thousands world-wide. Their goal is to raise $1 million. So far, they have raised over $236,000. On behalf of TXAA Carpenter presented Foy with a donation to the ALS fund. FMI visit: http://www.alsworldflight.com
View Carol Foy presentation

TXAA Treasurer Jim Rank and guest speaker Carol Foy enjoy the Summit
TXAA Treasurer Jim Rank and guest speaker Carol Foy enjoy the Summit

   

Next on the agenda was speaker Henry Ogrodzinsky. Henry O, as he is called, represents NASAO, the National Association of State Aviation Officials. He gave an overview of the history of and the future of GA in our country. O gave many great recommendations of how to educate the non-flying public and government officials as to the benefits and economic values of GA.
View Henry Ogrodzinski presentation

Following Henry O was TXAA board of director member Gene Robinson. Robinson is the leader of the GAP-T initiatives created last year. He gave a summary of the four initiatives, their present state and what should and could be done with them in the future. All agreed that these four initiatives are vital for the development and maintenance of GA in Texas and the nation.
View Gene Robinson presentation

     

NBAA VP Steve Brown and former NBAA regional representative Paul Smith share a moment before Steve’s presentation

 

Dr. Steve Swartz from North Texas University explains his school's new four-year aviation degree program

NBAA VP Steve Brown and former NBAA regional representative Paul Smith share a moment before Steve’s presentation

 

Dr. Steve Swartz from North Texas University explains his school's new four-year aviation degree program

     

The Summit concluded with a panel Q&A session. The audience was given questionnaire cards to ask the panelists which included David Fulton from TxDOT, John Happ from the Texas Airports Council, Mike Nicely of the FAA, Steve Hadley of NBAA and Dr. Steve Swartz from the University of North Texas. The questions ranged from legislative actions, governmental processes, educational opportunities and future actions from state and federal aviation agencies. A lively interaction took place between the panelist and the audience about the hot issues facing GA today.
   

Carpenter concluded the Summit by thanking everyone for attending and then he awarded door prizes that ranged from flight jackets to books and other literature.

Due to the overwhelming positive feedback from speakers, sponsors and attendees, the Texas General Aviation Summit has become and will continue to be a Texas tradition.

Sunset in Austin

 

Sunset in Austin

   

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