GA's Contributions To Haiti (And At Home) Recognized
Sen. Mark Begich was joined in his praise for GA by Sen. Mike Johanns in introducing a resolution (PDF) Tuesday to formally recognize the contributions of general aviation pilots to relief efforts in Haiti, while actor Harrison Ford stumped for GA. Through more than 4,500 flights in the 30 days following the Jan. 12 earthquake, general aviation pilots "helped ship over one million pounds of cargo and supplies to the people of Haiti," according to a Tuesday release from Sen. Begich. "Their acts of humanitarianism and goodwill are worthy of our praise and support and I am pleased to recognize their efforts," Johanns said. The men are part of the Senate General Aviation Caucus that was founded in September of 2009 "to promote a safe and vibrant environment for general aviation." The resolution is meant to serve as a tangible recognition of general aviation pilots' contribution "and encourage their continued generosity." GA's impact here in the U.S. was also highlighted, Tuesday, as the Caucus used the star power of Harrison Ford to grab extra attention in Washington.
Harrison Ford joined AOPA, GAMA, NBAA and EAA Tuesday to spotlight the economic impact of the general aviation industry before congressional members. Ford said it employs over 1.3 million people and "contributes over $150 billion to our nation's economy." Ford is an honorary board member of Wings of Hope, a humanitarian aviation organization, and previously served as chairman of EAA's Young Eagles program. Ford delivered his comments to some 20 representatives and five senators, who listened along with more than 250 congressional staff and industry representatives.