November 26, 2013
By Mike Collins
A vote by members of the Commemorative Air Force (CAF) will allow the organization’s board to move its headquarters from Midland, Texas, the CAF announced Friday, Nov. 22. The CAF Airpower Museum will remain in Midland, and Midland International Airport will continue to host CAF’s annual Airsho.
In an election held to consider a proposed amendment to the CAF’s bylaws, 75.1 percent of the organization’s members who voted cast ballots in favor of the proposed amendment, which authorizes the CAF’s board of directors to build a CAF National Airbase that will become the organization’s headquarters. Three-quarters of the voting membership had to approve the change, under the CAF’s constitution and bylaws. “With this amendment change, the CAF board of directors can now narrow its selection and negotiate with the potential locations that provide the best site for the future CAF National Airbase,” said Stephan C. Brown, president and CEO of the organization.
Six sites, all within Texas, are finalists for the planned facility. The CAF board is expected to narrow this list in December and make a final selection during the first half of 2014. Currently under consideration are Alliance Airport in Fort Worth, Collin County Airport in McKinney, Dallas Executive Airport in Dallas, Ellington Field Airport in Houston, Lackland/Kelly Airport in San Antonio, and North Texas Regional Airport in Sherman/Dennison.
A headquarters location must be determined by Oct. 1, 2014, through a vote of the CAF general staff, according to the bylaws amendment approved by CAF members. Nine of the general staff’s 11 members must agree on the “city which best supports and promotes the aims and purposes of the Commemorative Air Force, the education of the public, the heritage of military aviation, and the preservation of the aircraft and artifacts entrusted to its care,” according to the amended bylaws.
The organization began in 1957, when a small group of former military pilots pooled their money to purchase a P-51 Mustang. Now, more than 55 years later, CAF operates 162 vintage aircraft, assigned to 83 units located in 25 states for care and operation, in honor of American military aviation. The nonprofit educational association has more than 10,000 members.
“The public impact of the Commemorative Air Force, the CAF Airpower Museum, and CAF Airsho will continue to operate in Midland/Odessa in the same manner it has for the past 22 years,” Brown said. Look for a story about Airsho 2013 in the February issue of AOPA Pilot.
Mike Collins has worked for AOPA’s media network since 1994. He holds a private pilot certificate with an instrument rating.
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