Learning Center Our Enshrinees

Tom Poberezny

  • Earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Industrial Engineering from Northwestern University in 1970.
  • Formed the Red Devils Aerobatic Team (later renamed the Eagles in 1979) with Charlie Hillard and Gene Soucy and earned a spot on the U. S. National Unlimited Aerobatic Team. In 1972, the trio won the World Aerobatic Team Championship at Salon, France.
  • Won the 1973 U. S. National Unlimited Aerobatic Championship.
  • Became Chairman of EAA’s annual Fly-In and Convention at Wittman Field in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. Under his leadership, the weeklong event turned into aviation’s mecca.
  • Elected President of the EAA in 1989 where he became a leading advocate for the growth of general aviation, with an ongoing focus on safety, and successfully spearheaded a 10-year effort to create the Sport Pilot license and Light Sport Aircraft.
  • Created the Young Eagles program in 1992 where pilots volunteered their time and resources to provide youngsters a structured introductory flight in a general aviation airplane. The program flew one-million kids by December 17, 2003, the one-hundredth anniversary of the Wright Brothers first flight, and two-million by July of 2016.
  • Was one of six members on the National Centennial Flight Committee created by Congress to coordinate the nation’s celebration of the Wright Brothers historic first flight.
  • Promoted to Chairman and President of the EAA when Paul Poberezny (enshrined 1999) stepped down in 2009.

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