Aviation Partners' Joe Clark Receives 2015 NBAA Meritorious Aviation Service Award

Aviation Partners founder Joe Clark joins hands with FlexSys founder Sridhar Kota

Aviation Partners founder Joe Clark joins hands with FlexSys founder Sridhar Kota

Aviation Partner's Joe Clark was honored by the National Business Aviation Association with the 2015 Meritorious Aviation Service Award for his contributions to Aviation. The award was presented at the 2015 NBAA Conference on November 17 in Las Vegas, NV where FlexSys' joint venture with Aviation Partners was also announced.

This video was shown at the awards presentation featuring several living legends of aviation whose lives have been touched by Joe Clark.

From NBAA's press release:

Aerospace innovator Joe Clark is the chairman and CEO of Aviation Partners, Inc. (API) and chairman of the Aviation Partners Boeing joint venture. He is widely recognized as a pioneer in the fuel-saving and performance-enhancing technology of blended winglets.

Together, with entrepreneur Dennis Washington, Clark cofounded API in 1991 to develop and market winglet modifications for business and commercial aircraft. In its 25 years, API has supplied blended winglets to thousands of aircraft, including the Gulfstream II, Boeing Business Jet, several types of Boeing airliners, the Hawker 800 and 800XP and several Falcon Jet models. Worldwide, API’s winglets have saved an estimated 5 billion gallons of fuel.

“Joe Clark is an aviation visionary and a true entrepreneur,” said NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen. “In founding API, he brought together the brightest minds in aerospace engineering and helped develop advanced technology to improve aircraft performance and minimize aviation’s impact on the environment.”

Clark’s passion for aviation began while still in college, when he started flying lessons. In 1964, a friend, Clay Lacy, invited Clark to travel to the Reno Air Races aboard a Learjet. In 1966, Clark founded Jet Air, the first Learjet dealership in the Northwest and was named vice president of sales for aircraft modification specialist Raisbeck Engineering. In 1981, he cofounded regional carrier Horizon Air, which later became part of Alaska Airlines. In 1986, he founded Avstar, Inc., a system to market business aircraft previously used for military training.

When Clark founded API, the company’s first project was developing blended winglet technology for the Gulfstream II, which increased the aircraft’s range, speed and fuel efficiency.

“We’re proud to recognize Joe Clark with NBAA’s highest honor, the Meritorious Service to Aviation Award,” said Bolen. “Like past recipients, his achievements have advanced the technology of flight.”

The Meritorious Service to Aviation Award celebrates extraordinary lifelong professional contributions to aviation. For decades, it has been presented to individuals who built the aviation industry, including business aviation.

Full press release