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Airport advocacy: Making a difference

By Mike Ginter, AOPA vice president, airports and state advocacy

AOPA’s airport advocacy team supports our members every day by helping resolve issues at community airports, and 2022 was a very busy and gratifying year. Our team of airport experts, partnering with our Airport Support Network, resolved 166 airport cases this year, and we continue to work on nearly 50 current cases. We eagerly tackle every issue our members present to us, and we usually achieve favorable results.

What drives this success? Teamwork. We partner with state aviation directors, aviation associations, airport managers, and local support groups to reach common sense (and lawful) solutions for our members. Our passion for a healthy general aviation industry is the common bond that guides our quest.

This passion is evident in the members who have volunteered for ASN. More than 370 dedicated members volunteered in 2022, giving us almost 2,200 total volunteers, a 12 percent increase over 2021. There are 71 volunteers serving today who signed up 25 years ago when the program began. The most gratifying part of our job this year was meeting more than 700 of our ASN volunteers at the twenty-fifth anniversary events we hosted around the country.

Our ASN volunteers are on the front lines protecting GA, like John McGowan (RHV), Eric Strautman (GWS), Vicki Hurt (MDD), Euel Kinsey (DET), Carol Ford (SAN), Tom Hall (RTS), and Nils Pearson (VNC), to name a few. We will always be grateful for the enthusiasm and leadership of the late Kent Feuerring, our ASN volunteer at East Hampton (JPX), who died in October. I wish I could personally recognize and thank every one of our volunteers on these pages. Your AOPA airport support team is leaning into 2023 with a keen desire to help your airport. Please join our ranks and volunteer for the ASN program at aopa.org or by calling 800-USA-AOPA.

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