Nebraska NAVAIDs Chief Retires

For decades Nebraska Department of Aeronautics’ (NDA) personnel have shared their expertise and wealth of information on weather and navigational aids to airports not only across the Cornhusker state, but with the nation through their participation with the National Association of State Aviation Officials. (NASAO)  

Lyle Jacobsen, Nebraska’s Chief of the NDA’s Navigational Aids office in Kearney, Nebraska retired on June 18th after serving for 37 years with the state.

"You are the answer man when it comes to navaids," wrote Joe Pestka, Administrator of Aviation for the Missouri Department of Transportation, in an email congratulating Jacobsen on his retirement. Pestka, who serves as Treasurer for NASAO, went on to say that Jacobsen provided "great guidance" to the national organization.


Jacobsen was introduced to the electronics field while serving with the United States Army from 1968 to 1970. He was trained as a microwave radio operator and repairman. He later worked in one of the Army’s computerized message switching centers.
After his discharge from the Army, he attended Central Community College at Hastings, Nebraska majoring in electronic communications. Jacobsen was employed by the Nebraska Department of Aeronautics (in 1972) as an electronic specialist and in 1994 was appointed Chief of the Division by Kim Stevens, NDA Director at the time.

Jacobsen experienced the transition to solid-state equipment versus the tube-type NDB transmitters which were in use at the time of his hiring and has been involved in the installation and construction of many of the NDBs and VOR’s currently owned and operated by the state of Nebraska.

Jacobsen said the biggest impact on his career was the transition to satellite navigation and automated weather.

NASAO President, Henry Ogrodzinski wished Jacobsen the very best for a very long and very happy retirement and “promoted” him to the NASAO Alumni Association!

An open house was held on Friday, June 18th from 1:30PM to 4:00PM at the NAVAID office located 5065 Airport Rd, Kearney, NE.