Thu, Jun 03, 2004
Named Bell's H-1 Program Director
Kevin Connell, a 25-year
aerospace industry veteran has been named H-1 Program Director for
Bell Helicopter. Connell, most recently Bell's Executive Director,
Commercial Programs replaces Chris Becker, who has decided to leave
Bell for another position in the aerospace industry.
Bell senior vice president, US Government and International
Military Programs Terry Dake noted the great progress the H-1
program had made during the three years Becker was director,
"during that time the program successfully entered the flight test
portion of its development and is positioned to go forward into
operational evaluation. Chris' leadership, organizational talents,
and technical expertise have been instrumental in the forward
movement of the H-1 program."
Prior to joining Bell Helicopter in 2002, Connell was employed
by The Boeing Company for 18 years where he held various program
management positions including Israeli Apache Program manager,
Australia Air 87 Program manager, and senior program manager, USG
In his position as H-1 Program Director, Connell will have full
responsibility for all aspects of the H-1 flight test program (EMD)
and the Low-Rate Initial Production Program. The H-1 Program is a
major upgrade to remanufacture the US Marine Corps fleet of AH-1W
SuperCobra and UH-1N utility helicopters to an advanced
configuration featuring common engines and flight dynamics.
The program involves 100 UH-1N and 180 AH-1W SuperCobra
helicopters. Upon completion, the AH-1W will become the AH-1Z and
the UH-1N will become the UH-1Y.
Originally from Upstate New York, Connell served in the US Air
Force where he performed maintenance and flight operations on F-4C
Phantom fighters. He received a BS in Professional Aeronautics from
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University where he graduated Summa Cum
Laude. Connell also holds a Masters of Aeronautical Science from
ERAU. Connell is a certified fixed wing multi-engine pilot with CFI
and CFII licenses.
Connell and his wife Debbie have five children.
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