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Serving Everyone Using Business Aviation

By Ed Bolen

For more than 60 years, NBAA has been committed to serving its diverse Membership with excellence. That tradition continues today as NBAA represents everyone from entrepreneurs who fly their own plane to large companies with flight departments.

NBAA has long understood that business aviation is about the way a general aviation airplane is used rather than the size of the airplane or its engine type. We know that user fees, misguided security regulations or ill conceived environmental regulations can harm everyone in our industry. That's why NBAA's work to advocate for and provide services to the Association's Members reflects the wide range of perspectives and requirements of all its Member Companies.

In addition to its advocacy efforts, NBAA provides the products and services that promote best practices in aviation operations. To that end, we have continually expanded the resources NBAA offers to light business airplane owners, to ensure we are addressing the unique needs of this key business aviation segment.

For example, last year, NBAA launched the Light Business Airplane (LBA) Conference at the Association's 2009 Annual Meeting & Convention. The content for the event was drawn from owner-operators who are leaders in aircraft type clubs, representatives from aircraft service providers and training experts who work closely with those using light business airplanes.

“We have continually expanded the resources NBAA offers to light business airplane owners to ensure we are addressing the unique needs of this key business aviation segment.”

The inaugural LBA Conference featured the first-ever Single-Pilot Safety Standdown, sponsored by Cessna Aircraft Company, as well as a Concept Buyers Program for entrepreneurs who are contemplating but do not yet own a business airplane. So successful was the first LBA Conference that NBAA and the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association agreed to co-host LBA Conferences beginning this year in conjunction with each organization’s major annual event.

As much as the LBA Conference was valued by those who attended, the event also served as an opportunity to unveil new products for use throughout the year, including the first NBAA Light Business Airplane Buyer's Guide, which aids business aviators in selecting the right airplane for their needs by providing an overview of the light business airplanes in production.

Of course, NBAA offers a variety of additional products and services for the owner-operators in the Association's Membership. Our Operations Service Group – which staffs a one-stop information help-line – is well-versed in the issues facing light business airplane owners. NBAA's web site also has a number of online tools developed specifically for these Members, and NBAA's bimonthly print publication, Business Aviation Insider, is produced with flying entrepreneurs in view.

In fact, this edition of Insider is focused specifically on aviators who operate light business airplanes, with information for those considering a jet for business, tips for addressing owner-operator training challenges, and a story on best practices for ensuring cockpit discipline for entrepreneurs who fly in the left seat on business missions.

As we look forward to NBAA's second Light Business Airplane Conference – to be held in October, in conjunction with the 63rd Annual Meeting & Convention in Atlanta, GA – I welcome your views about how we can build on our tradition of serving everyone in business aviation.