After three long years, AAAA has finally completed a full cycle of events post Covid! Starting with the April 2022 AAAA Annual Summit in Nashville, through a great Aircraft Survivability Equipment Symposium in Lexington. KY, to the Joseph P. Cribbins Aviation Readiness Conference in Huntsville, AL, and ending with the Luther G. Jones Depot Maintenance Forum in Corpus Christi TX, every single one of them set records in attendance. Clearly, our mission statement pillar of “Networking” is back in full force. Every one of the events also featured our “Recognition” pillar in award ceremonies for outstanding Soldiers and units, as well as members of industry who have gone above and beyond to help support our Soldiers.
We are also knee deep in the Scholarship Foundation application process. Once again, we have received record applications and the redacted files are about to go out to the committee for consideration/selection. Thank you in advance to the hundreds of volunteers who take many hours of their personal time to review the files, creating the Order of Merit List for scholarship award. We will award over half a million dollars in time for high school graduations in the Spring. Recall that we realigned the scholarship awards timeline so that the awardees could be recognized at their high school graduation ceremony. Support to our members and recognition of recipients all rolled into one. We literally could not do it without the hundreds of volunteers on the Awards Selection Committee.
I mentioned the volunteers that support scholarship selections, AAAA literally would not be able to function without volunteers. All of us, from those in senior AAAA leadership positions down to our committee chairs, committee members, board members, chapter officers etc., are 100% volunteers. We do it because we believe in the mission to “Support the U.S. Army Aviation Soldier and Family,” and it is our chance to give back. Thank you all for your countless contributions.
As you might imagine, as soon as we finish the 2022 cycle of events, we are already ramping up for the 2023 cycle. Bound into this issue you will see the four-page description of the upcoming AAAA Mission Solution Summit April 26-28, 2023, again in Nashville at the Gaylord Opryland Hotel and Convention Center. Our Branch Chief has helped us shape the theme of “40th Anniversary of the Army Aviation Branch: Honoring the Past and Transforming for the Future!” Our Chief of Staff of the Army has confirmed he will keynote the event, and we will end with a terrific Soldier Appreciation Concert featuring Jennifer Nettles.
One thing I do want to point out is that we have decided to open the Professional Sessions half a day earlier than we have ever done before. This is in response to your feedback asking for more time to interact with our great AAAA family. Specifically, you will see that we will commence on Wednesday April 26, 2023 at 1 pm with the Branch Chief, AMCOM Commander, and PEO Aviation and then immediately follow with the Exhibit Hall ribbon cutting ceremony.
For all the AAAA National Executive Board members and chapter officers, the board meetings and chapter workshops have been moved forward to Monday, April 24. More to follow, but I wanted to give you a heads up for planning purposes.
Again, look for the Summit brochure in the center of this magazine. Don’t miss this once-a-year opportunity to gather together as one community, Active, National Guard, Reserve, veteran, retired, industry and civilian as we all work to meet the challenges ahead.
Look forward to seeing you in Nashville if not sooner as I continue my visits to our AAAA Chapters.
MG Tim Crosby, U.S. Army Retired
35th President, AAAA