Preparing for 2020
by Tom Abood
CJP is nearing the close of another milestone year, with success especially evident following a record-breaking convention in September. The event earned the title of the most well-attended event in CJP’s history, with 520 attendees and more than 130 Citations. Thank you to all who attended!
It is truly amazing to see our tight-knit community continue to grow each year, both in size and influence. And as we approach 2020, I am honored to step into the Chairman role and continue the efforts led by my predecessors, the board and CJP committees.
A little personal background: Professionally, I trained as an attorney, ran some investment management firms, and today am CEO of a transportation company. I sit on several boards of directors as well.
I have been flying since 1997, with a total flight time of 3,800 hours – nearly all of it spent flying places single-pilot cross-country. I’ve owned five airplanes beginning with a Bonanza from 1999-2001. I then progressed to a Baron (2001-2007) and King Air C90A Blackhawk (2007-2014).
In 2015, I stepped into the jet world with a Citation CJ2. I flew the CJ2 for two years before purchasing my current airplane, a Citation CJ3. Citations have opened up a whole new world of ease of travel for both family and business trips. The dispatch reliability, range and weather capability of these planes are simply remarkable. Though every airplane I have owned has felt like a magic carpet, the Citations are particularly magical.
The growth among CJP’s membership and partners over the last few years is incredible. And Marc Dulude did an excellent job carrying that momentum throughout 2019 in addressing his stated priority items: 1) more member benefits, 2) additional safety programs and materials, 3) added opportunities for members to gather and share experiences and socialize. Your board of directors has managed each of these priorities while also preserving CJP’s financial strength.
Progress can be seen on all fronts as we’ve welcomed new partners, added training events and expanded safety materials. The work of the Safety Committee throughout the year, particularly the Safety Standdown and presentation lineup at the convention, has been impressive. Also, many of you are taking advantage of the increased number of events, including CJP’s member dinners, which are popping up with more frequency (see Andrew’s CEO Message for more information).
Speaking of events, be sure to save the dates for our Charleston Regional Event (March 12-15), Santa Fe Regional Event (June 18-21) and the CJP Convention in Nashville (October 21-24). Please know we value your feedback and are incorporating suggestions from this past year’s events to make next year’s even better.
As Chairman, I am excited for the opportunity to continue the great work of my predecessors for the benefit of our membership in terms of safety, advocacy, comradery and philanthropy. I intend to foster this year’s convention success with improved safety content, better session lineups and improved auction evening dynamics. I also intend to tackle one of our greatest priorities in 2020: Providing a CJP-based alternative to address the dramatic increases in insurance premiums with decreasing liability limits that are besetting our membership. If we are successful, this CJP-based program will act as one alternative for coverage for qualified owner-operators in a tightening market for single-pilot operations.
This was a hot topic at the convention, and we are diligently working with our consultants, our partners and insurance underwriters to address the issue. Stay tuned for more updates in the new year. Until then, I wish you safe travels and a happy holiday season!