Former Cessna CEO Was Influential In Washington
Aviation Association (NBAA) President and CEO Ed Bolen said the
induction of Russ Meyer into the National Aviation Hall of Fame is
a fitting tribute to Meyer's legacy of innovation and dedication to
the people and companies in the general aviation community.
"Russ Meyer is a visionary who embodies the spirit and passion
that are the hallmarks of general aviation," Bolen said. "We are
delighted that his countless contributions to our industry have
been recognized with his induction into the National Aviation Hall
Meyer, former chairman and CEO of the Cessna Aircraft Company,
was inducted into the Hall of Fame in Dayton, OH, during an
enshrinement ceremony held Saturday.
A Davenport, IA native,
Meyer holds degrees from Yale and Harvard universities. He served
in the United States Air Force and Marine Corps Reserves from 1955
to 1961. Meyer has logged more than 17,000 flight hours in more
than 50 aircraft types.
In 1974, he joined the Cessna Aircraft Company as executive vice
president and was named chairman and CEO one year later. During
Meyer's tenure as chairman, Cessna delivered 67,000 aircraft - more
deliveries than those from any other manufacturer.
Under Meyer's leadership, Cessna earned the Collier Trophy twice
- first in 1986, for the safety record obtained by Cessna's
Citation fleet, and again in 1986, for the development of the
Citation X. In 1995, Meyer was honored with the NBAA Award for
Meritorious Service to Aviation. One of the aviation industry's
most prestigious honors, the award is given to individuals who, by
virtue of a lifetime of personal dedication, have made significant
identifiable contributions that have materially advanced aviation
A champion of general aviation, Meyer led the battle against
stifling regulations that nearly decimated the general aviation
industry in the late 1970s and 1980s. As a result, Congress passed
and the Clinton Administration signed the General Aviation
Revitalization Act in 1994. He's also credited with developing the
"Be A Pilot" program which has resulted in tens of thousands of new
pilots over the years.
"Russ has always been held in high regard by policymakers in
Washington, who recognize his solid grasp of policy and his
emphasis on collaborating with people regardless of political party
or philosophy," Bolen continued. "That reputation has made him a
very effective advocate for business aviation."
Meyer retired from Cessna in 2003 and remains active in general
aviation and philanthropic projects.
"It is tremendous to see that Russ's accomplishments, which have
helped define business aviation as we know it, will now be
recognized alongside those of other aviation pioneers," Bolen said.
"Russ's story is one we can all take great pride in, and we can be
sure that it will inspire future generations of aviators."