James Raisbeck Wins Top Flight Award for Charitable Hero
AIN is pleased to announce the winner of the 2021 Top Flight Awards in the Charitable Hero category: James Raisbeck
James Raisbeck, who died on August 31, was the noted aerodynamicist and founder of aircraft modification company Raisbeck Engineering. He made a fortune developing performance-enhancing kits for Learjets and King Airs—and then gave a good portion of it away.
Over two decades, Raisbeck and his wife Sherry contributed more than $32 million dollars through their foundation to a broad breadth of causes that included cancer and heart research, the arts, the Seattle Museum of Flight and the adjacent Raisbeck Aviation High School, and the United Way of King County in Washington state.
Before founding his own company, Raisbeck worked for Boeing and Robertson Aircraft and served as a flight engineer in the U.S. Air Force. In 1979, Purdue University presented its Distinguished Engineering Alumnus Award to him and in 1999 its Outstanding Aerospace Engineer Award. He also has received the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics Commercial Aviation Technical Achievement Award.
In 2002, the National Business Aviation Association honored Raisbeck with its Lifetime Achievement Award for Meritorious Service to Aviation. He also has been recognized with the Living Legends Lifetime Aviation Entrepreneur Award and as a fellow of AIAA, and he is included on the National Air and Space Museum's Wall of Honor.