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.
Charles ‘Bucky’ Oliver, Founder and Chairman Emeritus, Jetcraft
Today, I belong to two geriatric clubs; the first meets every Saturday morning for breakfast, and the second meets to remember NBAA experiences.
My aviation career began in 1961 when I was a freshman at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, and—much to the disappointment of my parents—l acquired an FBO business at Raleigh-Durham International Airport (RDU). Years later we matured to be a Citation Service Center and financed our first NBAA visit on what is now known as a Visa card.
Attending NBAA helped us to gain international recognition and build our reputation both inside and outside of the industry.
I recall when our ace pilot, Lloyd Hubbard, lost the key to the Citation on display in Los Angeles. Fortunately it was easy to pick a Citation lock in those pre-security days! I also remember with pride sitting on the wing of my brother’s Constellation (formerly known as Columbine, Eisenhower’s Air Force One) at Houston Hobby in light rain trying to close a sale.
Now the story continues as Jetcraft exhibits several hundred million dollars’ worth of inventory along NBAA-BACE’s aisle every year. It all proves the value of creating relationships, which is what corporate aviation delivers each day.