Cessna’s Meyer Elected to National Aviation Hall of Fame

Russell Meyer, Jr., current chairman emeritus and past chairman and CEO of Cessna, which he led from 1975 to 2003, will be inducted into the National Aviation Hall of Fame. Russ Meyer is largely credited with promoting product liability legislation in 1994, which became known as the General Aviation Revitalization Act. Following passage of that law, Cessna resumed production of its piston-powered aircraft after several years of idle assembly lines. Meyer also played key roles in the 'Be A Pilot' GA promotional campaign and in originating the Citation Special Olympics Airlift, in which Citation owners and operators donate use of their aircraft to transport athletes to the Special Olympics games. A former USAF fighter pilot and a graduate of Harvard Law School, Meyer got his start in general aviation as an attorney with American Aviation, the company that took over production of Jim Bede's AA1 Yankee. The company was later absorbed by Grumman. Meyer joined Cessna in 1975 and, along with Clyde Cessna himself and Dwane Wallace, has contributed more to the stellar reputation and iconic corporate culture of Cessna than any other executives in its history. The winner of two Collier Trophies, Meyer has served on three presidential commissions and holds a commercial pilot's license with instrument rating. He has logged more than 15,000 hours of flight time, including significant experience in the Mach 0.92 Citation X, the world's fastest business jet. Meyer will be joined in the hall this year by inductees astronauts Eileen Collins and the late Edward White; and Jimmy Stewart-renowned for his film career, but also as a B-24 Liberator group commander during World War II.

Mark Phelps is a senior editor at AVweb. He is an instrument rated private pilot and former owner of a Grumman American AA1B and a V-tail Bonanza.

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