Letters to Membership

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A Letter from Ed Bolen
NBAA President and CEO

December 4, 2008

Dear NBAA Member,

In light of the recent, overwhelming news coverage of the Big 3 auto executives' use of business aircraft, and the hearings on Capitol Hill this week related to the auto industry, I wanted to make you aware of NBAA's work to advocate for the business aviation community in the current environment.

As we know, the news coverage of the auto executives' use of business aviation, now in its third week, has taken a sensationalist view of not only the use of business aircraft by the Big 3, but the utilization of business aviation for any company, anywhere. As companies that use business aircraft know, these assets are essential business tools that provide enormous value to companies and their shareholders. Historically, studies – including those commissioned by NBAA – have reinforced this long-held view.

Like everyone else in our industry, NBAA has been frustrated by the mischaracterizations of business aviation that have been put forward, and we've been responding forcefully. As the story has unfolded, we have given interviews to a whole host of news outlets to correct misperceptions, inform reporters' understanding of our industry, and give context to the coverage. While we can't guarantee that our comments will be accurately portrayed or even included in every story, we have nevertheless pressed our case with CBS News, USA Today, National Public Radio, the Los Angeles Times, the New York Times, the Associated Press, Business Week, and many others – we are even talking with overseas news outlets.

Additionally, we're reaching out to news organizations, putting the resources in their hands that clearly explain why thousands of companies of all sizes, all across the U.S. look to business aviation as a solution to their transportation challenges, especially in a challenging economy. The information we've given the media is available on an online resources page that can be accessed from NBAA's redesigned web site, www.nbaa.org, or at NBAA's Media Backgrounder page at www.nbaa.org/news/backgrounders.

Of course, NBAA staff alone can't always respond to every negative story in every newspaper in the country, local television show, or posting on the Internet. Your participation is also needed, so that news organizations understand the true face of business aviation, and why it is so important not only for the businesses that rely on it, but also for supporting the growth of jobs, investment and economic activity in places across the country. If you're planning to write a letter to your local newspaper editor, or weigh in on the Internet, we hope the resources we've made available on our web site can also be used to help you assemble your comments.

Obviously, we'll continue to vigorously defend the industry as this story evolves. And as always, we welcome your thoughts and suggestions.

Sincerely,

Ed Bolen
President and CEO
National Business Aviation Association