During this week’s NBAA Annual Meeting & Convention in Atlanta, the business-aviation association presented its Meritorious Service Award to golfing legend, businessman and American icon Arnold Palmer.
The highest recognition given by the organization each year, it honors Palmer, a pilot with more than 50 years experience and multiple ratings, for his work with the group and his contributions to the industry. In the video above, mega investor Warren Buffet congratulates Palmer for his work in the NBAA No Plane, No Gain campaign.
Buffet, Palmer and astronaut Neil Armstrong have appeared as representatives for the effort, which seeks to promote the advantages of business aviation.
“It is Arnold Palmer’s service to the industry that is the reason we are presenting him with the Meritorious Service Award today,” said NBAA President Ed Bolen during the ceremony. “Arnold Palmer has been willing to use his good name to promote business aviation at a time when we needed it most.”
Palmer said in his remarks that the day prior he flew from Orlando to Charlotte to conduct some business and returned in time to be in his Florida office by early afternoon.
“As a young boy I dreamed of flying, and aviation has allowed me to visit places all over the world and spend extra time with my family,” Palmer said. “I wouldn’t be here today without my airplane.”
The epic battle waged this past fall between the general aviation community and lawmakers over user fees was re-examined today in an article by GlobalAir.com contributer and Corporate Flight Management, Inc., CEO Allen Howell.
On his blog, PlaneConversations.com, Howell recounts the efforts of the Airline Transport Association and others, via mainstream media, to shift public perception of general aviation to that of, "fat cats who ride around in big corporate jets wallowing in corporate excess while asking for government bailouts."
Most of us thought it to be a losing battle but, still, none of us would go down without a fight. I can’t speak for the organizations that represent us, but at the time I think they probably saw the battle as an uphill fight. The organizations that supported our interests seemed to be behind the power curve and lacked the money to work the Hill the old fashioned way.
From this recent win for the little guy, Howell says the term 'We the People' may have new meaning in today's political climate.
Read the full story here.