Mississippi Airport Association Kicks Off in Biloxi This Week

The Mississippi Airport Association (MAA) will be holding its annual conference in Biloxi, MS this year providing attendees with an opportunity to learn about popular topics in the aviation industry. MAA is a collection of aviation professionals and organizations who aim to improve aviation in the state of Mississippi. The purpose of MAA is to promote aviation and airport interests, to provide a medium for discussion by its members, to promote proper legislation for aviation and airports, and to advise and give consultation to its members when requested.

“The MAA Annual Conference presents a great opportunity for networking and learning about aviation from some of the industry’s top experts,” said MDOT Executive Director Melinda McGrath. “By partnering with MAA, we hope to increase the awareness of major topics in aviation.” McGrath stresses that airports accounted for more than one billion dollars’ worth of freight transported in and out of the state in 2010 and by building awareness of potential issues in aviation, MDOT can develop plans for a safe and efficient air transportation system for many years to come.
Attendees of the conference will be able to network with leading aviation professionals and key officials in aviation from around the country. Speakers at the conference will include Doug Murphy, FAA Southern Region Administrator; Bob Minter, Regional Manager of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA); and Selena Shilad, (Shown above at right) Executive Director of the Alliance for Aviation Across America (AAAA).

Attendees will learn about the Brown Condor Association and the history of John C. Robinson, a Mississippi aviator who was instrumental in the creation of the aviation program at the Tuskegee Institute. Those expected to attend are airport directors and board members, engineers, consultants, and representatives from government and other aviation-related businesses.
A presentation on the new unmanned aerial vehicle industry that is growing in Mississippi will be held on Thursday, May 10. The unmanned aerial vehicle is part of the “Unmanned Systems” program at Northrop Grumman, the world’s fourth-largest defense contractor and a leader in aerospace and naval technology. Following the presentation, guest speaker Gary Powers Jr. will speak during the luncheon about his father, Francis Gary Powers,  and his aviation adventures while flying a U-2 spy plane during the Cold War.
The conference begins on Wednesday, May 9 and will conclude on Friday, May 11.