NBAA Convention News

NBAA Convention News celebrates 35 years

 - November 7, 2006, 6:56 AM

It’s hard to believe, but the magazine you’re holding in your hands is entering its 35th year. Launched at the 1972 convention in Cincinnati, the issues back then were about the same size as they are today, but they were all black and white, had far fewer photographs and featured typefaces that perhaps would be unfamiliar to younger readers. Still, now as then, the mission of NBAA Convention News remains the same. We cover business aviation’s big show with a whole team of writers, editors photographers and production staff, professionals all, and we do it with a deep sense of pride.

Editor James Holahan, already a veteran aviation journalist by then, and publisher Wilson Leach, just two years out of college and full of big ideas, led a team that produced those first issues. Jim retired in 1999, his vision for the publication well established by that time. Today Wilson is the company’s sole owner, serving as managing director of what has grown to become the world’s biggest privately held aviation publishing company.

How big? Besides producing daily issues at the NBAA Convention each year, The Convention News Company (yes, that’s the name) also publishes Aviation International News, Business Jet Traveler, EBACE Convention News, HAI Convention News and daily on-site editions at the world’s major airshows including those at Paris, Farnborough, Dubai and Asian Aerospace in Singapore (33 issues in all). In addition to the stable of print publications are our Web site,, and AINalerts, a twice-weekly e-mail newsletter that has become an industry must-read. Joining the lineup this year is AINtv, a Web-based news program airing each day during the convention (check it out at

But that’s enough about us. In truth, NBAA Convention News is and always has been about you, the attendees of the annual convention. For the past 35 years we have filled the pages of this magazine with your stories, and the stories you can’t wait to read. Through it all it has been a joy to serve this audience–even at crunch time, when the editorial staff is laboring long into the night (while everybody else is heading off to their cocktail parties and swank dinners) to get the next day’s issue into your eager hands.

Jim Holahan summed it up best 15 years ago, on the occasion of NBAA Convention News’ 20th anniversary. Swap 20 with 35 and his words still ring true today. Jim wrote: “It’s been an exciting 20 years, not only because so many advances have been made in all of the things that fly, but because of the great people who conceive, develop, build, fly and maintain these machines. We feel proud to have rubbed shoulders with them in their glories and successes as well as in their sorrows and failures. It is these wonderful guys and gals to whom we dedicate these anniversary issues. We regret that all of them aren’t still around to accept our thanks.”