At NBAA’s Annual Meeting, Members Approve Directors and a Bylaws Update

Contact: Dan Hubbard, 202-783-9360,

Orlando, FL, Oct. 17, 2018 – The voting members of the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) today re-elected two individuals to the association’s Board of Directors during an annual meeting held during NBAA’s Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (NBAA-BACE). Also during the annual meeting, an update to the association’s bylaws was approved, related to its membership categories.

Approvals for NBAA Directors

Bill Ayer, board member, Honeywell, began his career as a salesperson with the Piper Aircraft Company. After starting Air Olympia, a regional airline in Washington state, in 1981, Ayer joined Horizon Air in 1982. Horizon became a subsidiary of Alaska Airlines in 1986 and he was named chief executive officer of the parent company in 2002. He retired from the company at the end of 2013.

Ayer is a former member of the FAA’s Management Advisory Council and a past chair of the FAA’s NextGen Advisory Committee. In addition to Honeywell, he serves on the boards of AOPA, the Museum of Flight, the National Air and Space Museum, the University of Washington and Vicis.

Ayer holds a bachelor’s degree from Stanford University and an MBA from the University of Washington. Ayer started flying at the age of 15 and has accumulated more than 5,000 hours of flight time. He joined the NBAA board in 2014.

John Witzig, vice president of corporate aviation, Pfizer, Inc., is responsible for worldwide transportation of personnel aboard company aircraft and ground vehicles. Witzig is a member of Pfizer’s Human Resources Leadership Team and Senior Leadership Council. He also is a member of the Aviation Director’s Roundtable.

Prior to joining Pfizer in 2011, Witzig was the senior vice president of operations for CitationAir, Cessna’s fractional aircraft business, where he held roles of increasing responsibility, beginning as an aircraft captain in 2001. Previous roles ranged from being a line pilot for an overnight freight company, to chief pilot of a business aviation flight department. Witzig is an airline transport pilot with more than 7,000 hours of flight time and several type ratings.

Witzig holds a bachelor’s degree in aeronautical science from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. He and his wife Dena have two college-age children. Witzig joined the NBAA board earlier this year. 

An Update to NBAA’s Bylaws

As business aviation continues to evolve, opportunities and challenges for NBAA and the industry it represents are clearly in view. At the same time, the industry is confronting a pronounced challenge, as generational and other changes raise concerns about whether a robust workforce of professionals will be available to meet the needs of the future.

These trends are the reason NBAA has updated the association’s membership categories to reflect today’s business aviation environment, while also providing a supportive framework for tomorrow’s industry landscape. Equally important, these changes are intended to make NBAA more welcoming, more open and more transparent.

Under the new organizational structure, the NBAA membership includes three member types: Operating, Business and Professional memberships. 

  • The Operating category includes members currently in the Corporate and Business categories, as well as Affiliates.
  • The Associate category is renamed Business to better reflect the nature of businesses that offer products and services for business aviation clients.
  • The Professional category includes current members who are contractors and sole proprietors and adds students, retirees and others with a pervasive interest in business aviation.

“These adjustments are intended to more accurately reflect who is in business aviation, what they do and what their needs are, today and in the industry of tomorrow,” NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen said.