September 18, 2011
By AOPA Communications staff
AOPA President Craig Fuller has announced that the association is creating a new regional manager program as part of ongoing efforts to strengthen its presence at the state and local level.
In the first significant change in its field representation program in decades, AOPA will create a new team of seven full-time regional managers, whose focus will be on building government relations and strong local aviation communities. To augment the efforts of these regional managers, AOPA will refocus its existing regional representative program on promoting and supporting aviation-related events.
“For many years, our regional representatives have been the face of AOPA to most of the aviation leaders and government officials outside of Washington, D.C.,” said Fuller. “Their commitment to our work, their record of service to aviation, and their achievements on behalf of our industry are remarkable. But the world has changed, and so have the needs of our members. Increasingly, state and local governments make decisions that affect our airports and our flying. Full-time challenges demand full-time engagement.”
In addition to representing AOPA member interests with state and local government officials, AOPA’s new regional managers will play an important role in the association's efforts to stimulate and encourage greater involvement among pilots and aviation enthusiasts nationwide.
“In our experience, one of the best ways to promote and protect general aviation is for members of the aviation community to get engaged in support of our freedom to fly,” said Fuller. “Together, our regional managers and representatives will give us more community-based resources to deploy in those efforts.”
AOPA will continue to employ the talents of current regional representatives at important aviation events throughout the year.
“AOPA’s regional representatives are known and trusted throughout the general aviation industry,” said Fuller. “Their continued involvement is a vital element of our efforts to fully engage the aviation community.”
AOPA expressed concern in a meeting with town officials from East Hampton, New York, that restrictions proposed to curb airport noise “overwhelmingly” generated by transient commercial flights would unfairly burden traditional airport users.
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