National Air Transportation Association (NATA) President and CEO James K. Coyne will chair the newly formed advisory council for AOPA’s GA Serves America campaign. The council works to ensure that opinion leaders, policymakers, legislators, and the public understand the full scope of general aviation.
“Jim Coyne and NATA represent vital segments of general aviation, the fixed-base operators who provide essential airport services, charter air service providers, and flight schools,” said AOPA President Craig Fuller. “His experience as a pilot and a leader in the aviation industry, as well as his time on Capitol Hill, will provide valuable insight as we stand up to the significant challenges general aviation faces today.”
AOPA launched GA Serves America in April to combat the economic, regulatory, and legislative difficulties besetting general aviation. The campaign’s premise is that widespread misconceptions about general aviation are at the root of these difficulties.
“I truly don’t believe that regulators and legislators are out to ‘get’ a $150 billion industry,” said Fuller. “They and their constituents just don’t understand what general aviation is and all that it contributes to the economic and social fabric of the nation. All of us in GA must stand together and define ourselves, showing the importance of the vital link we provide in the transportation system. If we do not, others whose priorities do not include general aviation will.”
Coyne said that NATA’s Board of Directors and members are “pleased to support this fantastic initiative.”
“Through General Aviation Serves America, we will dispel the myths about our community and promote the significant, meaningful contributions we make to our nation’s economy, supply chain, and, in some regions of the country, even the standard of living,” he added. “As chairman of the GA Serves America Advisory Council, I pledge to help generate the momentum we need to tell the real story of general aviation to the public, policymakers, and opinion leaders.”
Through targeted broadcast, print, and online advertising, GA Serves America is conveying general aviation’s importance in a way that many nonpilots across the country have never heard. The campaign is funded by AOPA, its members, and those such as NATA and its members who are interested in seeing this vital sector of the American economy survive and thrive.