The National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) announced that Stacy Howard, the association’s Western regional representative, will retire on June 15, after six years of service on behalf of NBAA members in Arizona, California, Hawaii, Nevada and New Mexico. Noted aviation analyst and industry veteran Phillip Derner Jr. will succeed Howard as the new Western regional representative for NBAA.
Since joining NBAA in 2012, Howard has been a tireless advocate for the interests of business aviation in the West, including the many airport and airspace challenges facing aviation in California, where aircraft are an essential component of the transportation system, but where, in some instances, airport access continues to be threatened.
“Stacy has excelled at bringing groups together, facilitating partnerships and working collaboratively with a variety of interests,” said NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen. “Her effectiveness has made a difference for business aviation, even beyond the states in her region. As just one example, her work to motivate grassroots organizations throughout her region, at every opportunity, was critical in the general aviation community’s effort to defeat the recent ATC privatization proposal in the U.S. House of Representatives.”
At the state level, Howard helped create a new environment for aviation in Nevada, fostering the formation of the Nevada Business Aviation Association (NVBAA), co-sponsoring NVBAA’s Aviation & Aerospace reception at the governor’s mansion and organizing a coffee social at the capitol, which brings together aviation stakeholders and legislators.
In California, she helped establish the state legislature’s aviation caucus, played a central role in the battle to preserve access to Santa Monica Municipal Airport and worked with Los Angeles World Airports, the Van Nuys Airport Association and California leaders to obtain a new general aviation customs facility at Van Nuys.
“Stacy’s work has involved a large, diverse region, and her outstanding advocacy and passion for the interests of business aviation will be missed,” said Steve Hadley, NBAA regional programs senior director and Southwest regional representative. “We wish her all the best in this new chapter in her life.”
Howard joined NBAA after spending 17 years with the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA), where she was responsible for extending the reach of the association into state and local public policy environment in Arizona, Nevada and Utah. She also served as director of student placement at Rice Aviation in Phoenix, AZ, and as an aviation insurance agent in Tempe, AZ. A 2,700-plus-hour commercial and multi-engine instrument-rated pilot, Howard has flown her Beechcraft V35 Bonanza extensively in support of her advocacy efforts.
Howard has served as president of the Aviation Safety Advisory Group of Arizona, a group that represents diverse aviation interests and works closely with the FAA coordinating safety seminars, publishing safety information and sponsoring safety awards. As a member of the Phoenix Airspace Users Workgroup, Howard’s efforts have helped to improve airspace routes for all users at Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport.
She also has served as the co-chair of the aviation committee of the Valley Industry and Commerce Association, a business advocacy organization in Southern California, and has worked closely with the Van Nuys Airport Association and the Long Beach Airport Association.
Derner Brings Knowledge, Experience to Western Region
Phil Derner brings to NBAA an extensive background in business aviation and other aspects of the industry, notably as founder and president of the respected worldwide aviation news and consulting organization NYCAviation. He has frequently served as an analyst during coverage of aviation-related news stories for local and worldwide news outlets, including CNN, Fox News and BBC.
In September 2017, Derner joined private on-demand charter aviation service JetSuite as interim co-director and duty manager, where he oversaw six departments within the operation’s “mission control” center responsible for scheduling and dispatching the company’s fleet of business aircraft.
“Phil’s in-depth knowledge across multiple segments of the aviation industry make him a tremendous asset for NBAA’s regional representative team, and for our members across the western U.S.,” Bolen noted.
Derner previously held operational, dispatch and logistics positions at North American Airlines, and later worked as an aircraft dispatcher with JetBlue Airways. He also served as a trustee for the New Jersey Aviation Hall of Fame, and on the board of directors for the World Airline Historical Society.