Largest-Ever NBAA Regional Forum Kicks Off Industry’s 2024 Event Calendar

Contact: Dan Hubbard, 202-431-5970,

Washington, DC, Feb. 2, 2024 – A record-shattering crowd count, an electric vibe and a beautiful day marked the first major business aviation event on the 2024 calendar, at the National Business Aviation Association’s (NBAA’s) Miami-Opa locka Regional Forum on Jan. 31. The all-day forum served as a showcase of the people, products and promise from an essential industry that supports over 108,000 jobs and an annual payroll of more than $5.4 billion in Florida alone.

More than 3,700 registered forum attendees from 44 U.S. states and 24 countries had the opportunity to engage with 193 exhibiting companies and view 25 aircraft on display, representing a wide spectrum of manufacturers.

“Clearly, we’re off to an exciting start to the year, as demonstrated by the energy at the Opa-locka forum, and the enthusiasm for the many ways business aviation is innovating to embrace the future,” NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen noted in remarks provided during the day’s opening keynote. “We look forward to seeing this momentum build as we move into our other events in the months ahead.”

The forum was an opportunity to put a sharp focus on workforce development, with a large student cohort, many of whom took part in a maintenance competition that drew students from five Florida schools, and the announcement by Capt. Barrington Irving of his plans for growing the Barrington Irving Technical Training Institute opened just last year by the Guinness Record-setting, round-the-world aviator.

The forum also provided an opportunity to update industry on the work underway to highlight business aviation’s sustainability leadership through the CLIMBING. FAST. advocacy campaign. “We have been increasing efficiency and reducing carbon emissions for decades – on the ground and in the air,” Bolen said. “We are paving the way to net-zero carbon emissions for all of aviation. It’s more important than ever for policymakers, opinion leaders and other stakeholders to understand this, and the leadership role business aviation has played in decarbonizing the industry.”

On hand to hear that message were staff with the Florida delegation of the U.S. House and Senate, as well as Miami-area officials, including Ralph Cutie, director and CEO, Miami-Dade County Aviation Department, and Francesca de Quesada Covey, chief innovation and economic development officer for Miami-Dade County.

The event was also the first NBAA forum to feature an Exhibitor Sustainability Pledge, a commitment by participating companies to follow environmentally friendly practices as part of their involvement with the forum. Additionally, the forum’s aircraft display was powered for the first time by zero-emissions battery-powered generators as a means of reducing the event’s overall carbon footprint.  

The day’s schedule was rounded out with a program of sessions focused on hot topics in the Washington policy arena; the many ways the industry is putting sustainability into action; and aviation cybersecurity concerns and best practices.

NBAA’s next Business Aviation Regional forum will be held at Westchester County Airport (HPN) in White Plains, NY, on June 12.

# # #

Founded in 1947 and based in Washington, DC, the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) is the leading organization for companies that rely on general aviation aircraft to help make their businesses more efficient, productive and successful. The association represents more than 10,000 company and professional members and provides more than 100 products and services to the business aviation community, including the NBAA Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (NBAA-BACE), the world’s largest civil aviation trade show. Learn more about NBAA at

Members of the media may receive NBAA Press Releases immediately via email. To subscribe to the NBAA Press Release email list, submit the online form.