August 3, 2012

NBAA brought the message of the “No Plane, No Gain” advocacy campaign to the Sunshine State recently, informing attendees at a Florida aviation conference how they could make their voices heard in promoting the benefits of business aviation.

Lisa Piccione, NBAA senior vice president, government affairs, spoke with attendees at the Florida Airports Council’s 43rd Annual Conference and Exposition, held July 22 to 25 in Naples.

“It is extremely important that NBAA partners with other aviation organizations across the country to amplify our voices and convey the importance of business aviation at the local, state and federal levels,” Piccione said. “NBAA brings a strong national perspective to the issues and challenges facing the industry, and in turn these regional groups bring a critical local focus and perspective to these issues.”

Billed as the largest single-state aviation conference in the United States, the recent Florida meeting brought together several hundred state airport managers and personnel, as well as the suppliers and vendors who keep those facilities ready and able to support the thousands of aircraft utilizing those airports each day.

Piccione noted that Florida “is a microcosm of the nation” for issues affecting the general aviation community, including business aviation. “All aspects of the aviation community are represented in the state, including manufacturing and support,” she said. “Floridians have also experienced firsthand the benefits of business aviation in times of crisis, including emergency relief and disaster assistance. Those are some of the many powerful examples that we cite with the No Plane, No Gain” program.

Formed in partnership between the General Aviation Manufacturers Association and NBAA, the No Plane No Gain initiative promotes the many positive contributions that business aviation provides to citizens, companies and communities across the United States. The program seeks to dispel misperceptions about the industry, and to educate policymakers and opinion leaders about the essential nature of business aviation in the U.S.

The presentation to the Florida Airport Council was one of about 20 similar talks Piccione gives each year to update people in the industry about the progress of the No Plane No Gain campaign. She also encouraged those attending the Florida airports gathering to reach out to their local, state and federal officials to promote the industry’s benefits.

“People at the local level are the ones with the power,” Piccione concluded. “The strongest voices come from those back home, and people need to share with their elected representatives information about the jobs and services that business aviation provides to their local communities. It is critically important that they make their voices heard.”