Experimental Aircraft Association
EAA - the largest organization in the world supporting recreational or sport aviation
The Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) was founded in 1953 and is the largest organization in the world supporting recreational or sport aviation.
EAA is headquartered in Oshkosh, Wisconsin and hosts the worlds largest air show, Air Adventure. In 2006, the Oshkosh air show had 17,000 aircraft, 2,500 air craft displays, 800 exhibits and over 500 forums and workshops. The expected attendance for the week-long show in Oshkosh will draw nearly 1,000,000 visitors who come to see performers, thrilling aerobatics and a wide assortment of aircraft and aviation-related businesses on display.
The Experimental Aircraft Association is also the sponsor of the Young Eagles Program. The EAA Young Eagles program was launched in 1992 to give interested young people, ages 8 - 17, and an opportunity to go flying in a general aviation airplane. These flights are offered free of charge and are made possible through the generosity of EAA member volunteers.
Since 1992, more than 1.1 million Young Eagles have enjoyed a flight through the program. Young Eagles have been registered in more than 90 different countries and have been flown by nearly 40,000 volunteer pilots.
Meet EAA Young Eagles Chairman Harrison Ford
You might recognize Harrison Ford from his numerous movie roles, like Indiana Jones from the Temple of Doom or CIA Agent Jack Ryan in Clear and Present Danger or the president in Air Force One, but Harrison Ford is also an experienced pilot and Chairman of the EAA Young Eagles program.
Since Young Eagles began in 1992, there have been three Chairmen. All are active pilots and have flown Young Eagles. The first chairman (1992- 1994) was Academy-Award winning actor Cliff Robertson. Mr. Robertson was followed as Chairman by Gen. Chuck Yeager (1994 - 2003). Of course Gen. Yeager is known as a famous test and combat pilot and the first person to fly faster than the speed of sound. Now, Harrison Ford has taken over for Gen. Yeager.
"It's daunting to step into General Yeager's shoes, but aviation is about learning new skills and the satisfaction that comes with practicing them and doing better," Mr. Ford said upon accepting the position.
"Young Eagles gives kids a view of the world they've never seen before," Ford said. "Each Young Eagle flight is an opportunity to excite kids by sharing a passion for flight and to show them that they, too, can learn the skills to participate in aviation."
As Chairman, Mr. Ford promotes the Experimental Aircraft Association Young Eagles program when possible and a plan to attend the EAA AirVenture Oshkosh Fly-In. Mr. Ford has flown nearly 250 Young Eagles since becoming involved in the program in 2001.
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