Page 2811 - Week 09 - Wednesday, 12 August 2015

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Primarily, members of Recreational Aviation Australia fly ultralight or light sports aircraft, weight shift and microlight aircraft and powered parachutes. In 2014 members of the RAA performed 349,000 landings and spent 192,000 hours in the air. RAA is also maintained as an incorporated association right here in the ACT, where it employs 15 staff.

Whilst spruiking the merits of recreational aviation, the association also rightly upholds, strongly promotes and constantly strives to improve safety in aviation. These are important principles for light aircraft operators, who often fly away from controlled airspace in larger cities and around military bases, meaning they do not have to file any flight plans or talk to air traffic control. The work done to keep recreational pilots safe is one the most important jobs of the association, and they should be proud of the work they do.

Each year, the association runs a scholarship program known as “Giving young flyers training support”. The scholarship program has operated since 2008, with the aims of introducing young people to recreational aviation, developing responsible and safe flying attitudes and offering a basis of aviation knowledge to further potential careers in recreation, military or commercial aviation. The program was originally run through members’ donations. However, recognising the merit of the program, Airservices Australia has kindly been sponsoring the program since 2010.

I speak of RAA today because I had the opportunity of attending a scholarship ceremony on l6 May this year. I would like to extend my congratulations to those who won the scholarship on the night. The scholarship winners were Beau-Jacob McAuley, Brianna Willoughby, Clare Millett, Connal Martin, James Kissell, Juan Sperling, Leah Barber, Nash Goode, Nicholas Thompson, Toby Mallon, Zachary Brown, Hayden Goodwin, Matthew Webster, Ohram McLeod, Oliver Gadsby, Amelia Morton, Carew Laver, Dean Cagorski, Hannah Mahon, Isaac Wishart, Jack Zani, Matthew Webster, Mitchell Paterson, Robin Watson, Tait Jeffries and Thomas Murray-Smith.

I wish all the scholarship winners happy and safe flying in the years ahead. I note that Mr Wall also supported RAA at that event. Thank you also to everyone who made donations in order to ensure that scholarships could be provided as well as everyone involved in running and promoting the scholarships.

I would also like to congratulate the staff and board of RAA. The staff members include the CEO, Michael Linke, and his assistant, Kelly Stirton; the national operations manager, Jill Bailey; the assistant operations manager, Neil Schaefer; the national technical manager, Darren Barnfield; the assistant technical manager, Jared Smith; the national finance and administration manager, Maxine Picker; and the national safety, risk and compliance manager, Katie Jenkins. RAA’s board consists of the president, Michael Monck; the secretary, Tony King; the treasurer, Jim Tatlock; and the state representatives, Ross Millard, Mark Christie, Michael Apps, Ed Herring, Mike Smith, Trevor Bange, Eugene Reid, Rod Birrell and Ed Smith.

I congratulate the RAA for the work they do and commend the association and its scholarship program to members. Further information about the association can be found on the website at

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