NBAA recently presented its prestigious Silk Scarf Award to Jim Bennett, who announced his retirement as director of aviation for Starbucks Corp., effective Feb. 4.
“In addition to leading one of the most respected flight departments, Jim has served on the Pacific Northwest Business Aviation Association (PNBAA) Board of Directors for the past 13 years, and as president for many of those,” said Kristi Ivey, NBAA’s Northwest regional representative. “Under his leadership, PNBAA has experienced continued growth and success, setting the bar for other regional groups around the country with its educational, philanthropic, and advocacy efforts. Jim leaves an indelible legacy in the business aviation community in the Pacific Northwest.”
In addition to his flight department staff, fellow PNBAA board members, and industry peers, Bennett’s retirement was celebrated at Seattle’s Museum of Flight by senior Starbucks executives, as well as Universal Weather and Aviation Chairman and former NBAA Board Member Greg Evans.
Bennett joined the coffee company in 2002 – he noted that the company’s flight operation started with a Bombardier Challenger, and the department’s growth accelerated when it was moved in-house in October 2002. Today, Starbucks operates three Gulfstream aircraft that have flown to more than 90 countries.
Prior to joining Starbucks, Bennett spent 10 years with Aviation Methods (TAG Aviation), and eight years with Hartford, CT-based CIGNA Corporation.
Until his retirement, Bennett continued to fly for the coffee company. He is type rated in the SA-227, IA-Jet, CL600, CL604, DA-50, G-159, G-IV, GV, B757, B767 logging 17,000+ accident / incident free hours. Bennett attended Syracuse University and has earned a bachelor’s degree in business.
Bennett has worked on the Bombardier Global Express Advisory Board during development and on the King County Airport Roundtable, and has helped develop PNBAA’s partnerships with the Washington State Aviation Association and other aviation stakeholders within the region.
About the Award
In an effort to honor outstanding business aviation community members and inspire future aviators, the NBAA Silk Scarf Award is given to individuals for special contributions to the business aviation community during their careers. Learn more and view past award recipients of the NBAA Silk Scarf Award.