One element of the HAI HELI‑EXPO trade show is the HAI Annual Membership Meeting & Breakfast. In addition to mounds of bacon and eggs, HAI members who attend the breakfast also receive reports from the association’s leaders and hear from candidates standing for election to the HAI Board of Directors. Members may vote online before the show opens and on-site at the show.
In Atlanta, the voters selected Jeffery Smith of R.O.P. Aviation in Teterboro, New Jersey, to join the board. Smith will fill the open general aviation seat on the board, replacing current director David Bjellos, who will leave the board when his term expires at the end of June. The nine director positions on the board are allocated among various industry sectors to match the demographics of HAI operator members.
Besides serving as chief pilot for R.O.P. Aviation, Smith has worked with the Eastern Region Helicopter Council for more than 15 years, serving as chairman for five years. He is a US Army veteran and has accumulated more than 10,000 flight hours, including over 700 hours in military and commercial helicopter air ambulance missions. Smith currently serves as the chairman of the HAI Fly Neighborly Committee and has previously worked with the Helicopter Tour Operator Committee, Flight Operations Committee, and the Heliport Committee.
“We are pleased to welcome Jeff to our board of directors,” says HAI president and CEO Matt Zuccaro. “He brings significant experience from his current position with the Eastern Region Helicopter Council, which should blend in very well with the breadth of industry knowledge of our other directors. The HAI Board of Directors comprises some of the best and brightest people our industry has to offer, and our membership and association truly benefit from their guidance.”
HAI members also reelected current directors Stacy Sheard and Marc Stanley. Their three-year terms of office begin on July 1, 2019. Retaining her commercial aviation seat, Sheard is a military veteran who currently flies helicopters for Executive Jet Management in Delaware. Stanley, also a veteran, flies for MassMutual Financial Group in Massachusetts. He retains his general aviation seat.
HAI also announced that the board has established its slate of officers for the 2019–20 term. Jan Becker, the current treasurer, will assume the role of board chair on July 1, 2019. Assistant treasurer Sheard will become vice chair, and directors Daniel Schwarzbach and James Wisecup will assume the roles of treasurer and assistant treasurer, respectively.