Retired AOPA President Still Understands What An Association Must Do To Serve An Embattled Industry
Its been nearly four years since Phil Boyer stepped down as the president of AOPA at the end of 2008. When Boyer took the controls in 1991 (only the third president in AOPA’s 69-year history), the GA industry was in crisis, beaten down by product liability lawsuits. He helped pass the General Aviation Revitalization Act, which turned around aircraft manufacturing. He also championed civilian use of GPS and WAAS, and later ADS-B to benefit general aviation. Boyer had quite an effect... He upgraded AOPA management and member service, resulting in a 40-percent membership growth -- despite declining pilot numbers. He devoted considerable assets to increasing GA advocacy and member benefits, while holding AOPA dues to $39 -- and left AOPA is better shape than it had ever been.
Things have changed since then... a new President is under fire for a number of problems that don't seem to have easy answers and there is a strong question as to what role AOPA can and should play in the future of aviation until it can get its house in order. While all this transpires, we thought that it behooved us to check in with Phil as we asked him some intriguing questions during recent conversations conducted at Oshkosh 2012.
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