Oregon’s leading role in a variety of aviation sectors received public acknowledgement Oct. 9 when Gov. John Kitzhaber presented an aviation appreciation proclamation at a statewide meeting of aviation organizations.
The event publicly proclaiming October 2014 as Aviation Industry Appreciation Month came at the Oregon Aviation Industries Cluster (ORAVI) Summit in Hood River. The official proclamation honored the 400 aviation businesses in 78 communities that generate more than $22.7 billion in economic benefit to the state, and 76,000 jobs.
Aviation serves Oregon with a system of 97 public-use airports and more than 320 private airports. There are about 11,000 pilots and more than 7,700 general aviation aircraft in the state.
“Oregon is home to more than 90 percent of all of the U.S. heavy-lift helicopter capability and home to the largest kit-built manufacturer in the world,” the proclamation said. The kit manufacturer referred to is Aurora, Oregon-based Van’s Aircraft.
AOPA works closely for the benefit of general aviation in Oregon with the Oregon Pilots Association, the Pacific Northwest Business Aviation Association, ORAVI, the National Business Aviation Association, and others.
AOPA Northwest/Mountain Regional Manager David Ulane attended the event, and urged members to stay informed on aviation issues. They should point out the recognition that aviation’s role has received when engaging policymakers on the issues, he said.
“Aviation and the aerospace industry have a significant positive impact in the state, and the recognition of that impact by high-level elected officials is an important statement about the value of GA and the aviation industry,” Ulane said.