MAA Conference Report
By Kirsten Shaw
Mississippi Airports Association
The 2022 Mississippi Airports Association Conference was a huge success, with more than 200 attending! Held in early September at The Mill Conference Center in Starkville, it featured topics including cybersecurity, the current impact of health on travel, human trafficking, the impact of vultures on airports, strengthening military communities, UAVs, the Airport Cooperative Research Program (ACRP) and leadership and team development, as well as updates from key agencies and officials.
The conference would not be possible without the support of our sponsors. Our thanks and gratitude to our first-time sponsors and to those who returned, and to our exhibitors as well.
Following a welcome by Starkville Mayor Lynn Spruill, this year’s speakers included Daniel Edney, Mississippi State Health Officer; Stephen Gay, Office of the Mississippi Attorney General; Tom Williams, Mississippi Defense Communities Development Council and Meridian Airport Authority; Tara Ford and Cody Jackson, Federal Bureau of Investigation; Matt Dowell, ACRP and Golden Triangle Regional Airport; Col. Justin Grieve, Wing Commander, Columbus Air Force Base; Scott Rush, Mississippi State University Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Aquaculture; Madison Dixon, MSU Raspet Flight Research Lab; Chairman Tom King and Commissioner John Caldwell, Mississippi Transportation Commission; Ken Chapman, Ken Chapman & Associates, Inc.; Michael O’Harra, Steve Hicks and Rans Black, FAA; Selena Shilad, Alliance for Aviation Across America; Josh Stubbs, MDOT Aeronautics; Jeff Wagner, Baker Donelson and Kim Jackson, TSA. Many of their presentations can be seen here.
On Wednesday, before business began, many attendees enjoyed a round of golf at Mossy Oak Golf Course or helice shooting at Prairie Wildlife, both in nearby West Point. MSU’s Raspet Flight Research Lab, nationally known for experimental aviation research including UAVs, offered a tour that was very well received. Thursday brought a tour of Whitehall mansion in Columbus for spouses and guests. A highlight for many came that evening, with a dinner at the Airbus Helicopters plant. The company graciously provided tours of the facility to all.
Two individuals were honored as Life Members of the Association. This recognition for longtime service to MAA and to aviation in Mississippi was conferred on Mike Hainsey of Northstar Aerospace Solutions, retired Executive Director of Golden Triangle Regional Airport, and Clint Pomeroy of Pomeroy Consulting, retired Executive Director of Natchez-Adams County Airport.
A gallery with more conference photos is on our website.
Dates for the 2023 conference are September 13-15 in Meridian. Mark your calendar now!
2022 MAA CONFERENCE SPONSORS
Jackson Municipal Airport Authority
Baker Donelson Bearman Caldwell & Berkowitz, PC
Allen & Hoshall
Golden Triangle Regional Airport
Gulfport-Biloxi International Airport
Infrastructure Consulting & Engineering
Meridian Airport Authority
Michael Baker International
Shows, Dearman & Waits
Taffy Pippin Consulting, LLC
Titan Aviation Fuels
Clark Beverage Group, Inc.
NorthStar Aerospace Solutions, LLC
ACE Consulting & Design
Barge Design Solutions, Inc.
Cook Coggin Engineers, Inc.
Digital Engineering & Imaging, Inc.
Engineering Plus, Inc.
Engineering Solutions, Inc.
Kutchins & Groh, LLC
Road Worx, Inc.
Sunbelt Sealing, Inc.