In the absence of this year’s NBAA show that was canceled due to the Covid-19 pandemic, AIN is publishing remembrances of past conventions from captains of the industry to you, our readers. The responses highlight how the annual event resonates throughout the industry. To read more, go to the NBAA Memories landing page.
Lou Seno — chairman emeritus of JSSI
The downsized post-9/11 NBAA Convention held in December 2001 in New Orleans will always be one that will I remember.
Our country was still in shock over the devastating events of that infamous day just 90 short days prior. The last thing people wanted at that time was to have to travel to another business conference, and I do recall the rather negative comments coming from some of my colleagues who had no desire to travel to Louisiana during what would be a rather somber holiday season.
I very clearly remember NBAA promoting the event as “A Gathering of Friends” and, in reality, that is exactly what it ended up being.
I had been privileged to be part of this great industry now approaching the 50-year mark. During that time, I have forged relationships that have gone well beyond the realm of pure business. Over the years, I have had the honor of being invited at a wedding and was there to shed a tear at a funeral, standing alongside one of my “industry” friends.
That particular convention in 2001 was just what the doctor ordered. I don’t think I will ever forget how therapeutic those hugs and handshakes were the morning the convention floor opened. Thanks so much to NBAA president and CEO Ed Bolen and his team for giving our industry just what we all needed at such a critical time!
I can’t imagine what it would be like had I not been able to spend virtually my entire life in business aviation!