ATM Modernization, Business & GA, Commercial, Military

Editor’s Note: Tooting Our Horn

By David Jensen | May 1, 2002
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Pardon me for tooting our horn, but Avionics Magazine has a couple of reasons to boast. For one, our "Safety in Avionics" columnist, David Evans, recently received the prestigious Neal Award for his reporting and writing. Winning awards is not a new experience for David; he has twice won the Royal Aeronautical Society Award and twice won the National Press Club Award. His mantle sags with honors, including the Corboy & Demetrio Journalism Award from the National Air Disaster Alliance and Foundation, the New York University Center for War, Peace and the Media Olive Branch Award, and the Society of Professional Journalists Sigma Delta Chi Award for public service in newsletter journalism.

But the Neal Award is special for David and for Avionics Magazine. No doubt little known in the aviation community, the Neal Award is, nevertheless, the highest honor that an American journalist in business-to-business (B-to-B) media can receive. It is, for B-to-B magazines such as ours, what the Academy Awards are for the movie industry. Some 1,300 B-to-B media entries from throughout the United States compete and are scrutinized during three stages of judging. Only 18 individuals (one per category) are judged as winners each year.

David won a Neal Award, not for just one of his columns, but for the consistent quality of his writing and reporting. Of course, such consistency comes from experience, of which David has plenty.

A former U.S. Marine Corps officer who saw infantry combat in Vietnam, David launched his journalism career in the mid-1980s as a military affairs correspondent for the Chicago Tribune. He primarily covered national defense issues but also wrote a series of stories on aging commercial airliners. For a television documentary, he covered the 1988 downing of an Iranian airliner by the Aegis cruiser USS Vincennes. In the early 1990s, he was assigned to the Persian Gulf and wrote the first stories about the air campaign over Iraq.

In addition, David deployed with U.S. troops to Mogadishu, Somalia, in 1992, where he interviewed Mohammed Aideed, eldest son of the late warlord, Farah Aideed. And he journeyed to the Balkans to visit officials of Croatia, Bosnia, Macedonia and Serbia.

In addition to being an Avionics Magazine columnist, David is the editor-in-chief of the award-winning newsletter, Air Safety Week. We are proud of David and pleased that he is part of the Avionics Magazine team.

Another Accomplishment

We also are proud of our newest contributing editor, Harry Kraemer. (You may recall my March 2002 column, in which I recounted Harry’s hair-raising first assignment, on Sept. 11, 2001.) Recently, the 35-year-old National Association of Flight Instructors (NAFI) designated Harry a Master CFI-Aerobatic (certified flight instructor). He now joins an exclusive group; of the about 81,000 CFIs in the United States, fewer than 300 have earned the Master CFI-Aerobatic designation. It requires continuing education and peer review and, like a flight instructor’s certificate, must be renewed biennially.

Harry, too, has a long list of achievements. For example, he is the first person to earn both the Master CFI and Master GI (ground instructor) designations. Of the about 69,400 certified ground instructors in the United Sates, Harry is one of only two to have earned the "Master" designation. He has logged more than 6,300 flight hours and holds instrument and multi-engine ratings. In addition to being a writer and flight instructor, Harry is a corporate pilot.

Harry and David, together with our other writers and editors, give Avionics Magazine the level of quality our readers have come to expect–and reason for tooting our horn.

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