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Pilots honor a Colorado airport's 'champion'Pilots honor a Colorado airport's 'champion'

The users of a Colorado airport have come up with a special way to recognize community leaders or organizations whose support of aviation has earned them recognition as airport champions.

The local chapter of the Experimental Aircraft Association at the Granby-Grand County Airport issued its first GNB Airport Champion Award to Don (Wally) Baird, town manager of Granby.

“Because you cannot thank people often enough, this year we/EAA Chapter 1267, initiated the Airport Champion Award to be given annually to the elected or community leader or organization which has supported Granby/Grand County Airport-Emily Warner Field,” Penny Hamilton, AOPA’s Airport Support Network volunteer in Granby, wrote in an email.

Baird was honored in recognition of “his long-time support and recognition of the important economic and tourism value” of the airport, said Warren Hendrickson, AOPA Northwest Mountain regional manager.

The award presentation was part of the chapter’s Annual EAA Community Pancake Breakfast July 2, which drew an enthusiastic crowd of local residents and summer vacationers despite rain showers and low clouds.

Aircraft owners opened their hangar doors so those attending could get a closer look at the variety of aircraft based at the field.

An aviation scholarship silent auction doubled the funds raised in the 2015 effort, with all of the proceeds to go to chapter support of local children’s participation in EAA Aviation Camps, and to help students pursue aviation careers.

“This award is an excellent example of a way for airport users to say thank you to those in the community that support your airport,” Hendrickson said.

Dan Namowitz

Dan Namowitz

Associate Editor Web
Associate Editor Web Dan Namowitz has been writing for AOPA in a variety of capacities since 1991. He has been a flight instructor since 1990 and is a 30-year AOPA member.
Topics: Advocacy, Airport, Experimental Aircraft Association

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