OSHKOSH, WIS. – In a surprise announcement at 12:30 pm CDT, July 26, 2011, at EAA’s Brown Arch entryway during EAA AirVenture Oshkosh, EAA and AirVenture Chairman Tom Poberezny announced that he was stepping down from those positions effective August 1. EAA President Rod Hightower assumed those responsibilities on that date.
Poberezny has led EAA – now in its 58th year – since 1989, when he assumed the top position after his father, Paul, retired from active day-to-day involvement. He has served as chairman of EAA AirVenture Oshkosh for more than 30 years and assumed the title of chairman emeritus upon his retirement.
“The building blocks for the continued success and growth for EAA have been laid, and I look forward to helping in new and different ways in the years ahead,” said Poberezny.
Poberezny said he feels fit and enjoys the work, but added: “Fresh thinking and new ideas are the fuel to propel us forward. EAA is well-positioned to step into the future with confidence, strong leadership and a promising outlook.”
Commenting on Poberezny’s decision, Dave Weiman, of Midwest Flyer Magazine, said:
“EAA would not be where it is today if it had not been for Tom Poberezny, who has been a catalyst in uniting all aspects of general aviation at one central meeting place. Tom has also worked hard to create excitement, and encouraged involvement by all segments of general aviation, while retaining the core values of the organization, which has been no easy task.
“Tom once told me that nothing lasts forever, and his retirement from EAA is symbolic of that reality.”
Weiman believes that Rod Hightower is providing strong direction to EAA as president, and will do a good job as chairman of the board.
“Tom has left big shoes to fill, and I’ll work hard to do my best for our members, our business partners, the aviation community and the entire Fox Valley area, especially Oshkosh,” said Hightower.
Louie Andrew, vice president of the EAA Board of Directors, said the board unanimously passed a resolution praising Poberezny for his leadership in helping to make EAA, the world’s leading aviation association; and EAA AirVenture Oshkosh, the world’s premier aviation event.