Noteworthy NBAA Awards

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Finally, we'd like to acknowledge and congratulate two award recipients who were recognized by their peers last week at NBAA's annual meeting and convention. Mary F. Silitch received the 2006 NBAA Platinum Wing Award, which recognizes excellence and lifetime achievement in journalism. Additionally, the association awarded Katherine Perfetti its Silk Scarf Award, traditionally given to individuals in recognition of special contributions to the business aviation community.

Silitch's career includes positions as editor in chief at Professional Pilot, editor in chief at Private Pilot and director of public relations/editor at the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association. She holds a private pilot certificate with multi-engine, instrument and sea ratings. She has flown more than 250 types of aircraft and has logged more than 4,700 flight hours, mostly under IFR conditions. In addition to having patiently mentored this writer, she is one of the most professional aviation journalists we have ever known. Meanwhile, Perfetti has always been one of the most operationally knowledgeable FAA managers we have encountered. She first joined the FAA in 1978 as an aviation safety inspector and spent 13 years in the Kansas City and St. Louis field offices before transferring to the FAA’s Washington, D.C., headquarters in 1990. Most recently, she served as the agency's lead on the Parts 135/125 Aviation Rulemaking Committee. Perfetti holds an airline transport pilot certificate with several additional ratings. She soon will retire from the FAA after a very successful career; her departure marks a loss for the agency and for the industry it regulates.