The Chamber recognizes the businesses which operate at the Aurora State Airport are extremely important contributors to the economy in the South Metro and North Willamette Valley areas. As such, the Chamber wishes to support the opportunity for these businesses to have a voice in our business community.
The Aurora Airport Owners Association (AAOA) was formed with the purpose of facilitating a positive platform in the region to recognize the increasing economic benefits of the existing “Aviation Cluster” and support efforts to attract additional businesses to this important cluster.
Aurora State Airport is Oregon’s third busiest airport and one of only 84 general aviation airports identified by the Federal Aviation Administration as nationally significant. In 2012, the airport saw a total of 94,000 operations which equaled 117,675 general aviation visitors.
According to the 2014 Oregon Aviation Plan’s Economic Impact Study, the Aurora airport’s economic impact equaled ove half a billion dollars, not including tax revenue generated from property or income tax. Private property at the airport pays an estimated $780,000 to local taxing districts for land and buildings (not equipment) including the Aurora Fire District, North Marion High School and Marion County.
The Aurora State Airport employs 1,200 people, including two of the largest and most recognized heavy-lift helicopter companies in the world—Columbia and Helicopter Transport Services, the biggest kit-plane manufacturer in the world, one of the biggest avionics dealers in the country, and life flight air ambulance. An additional 274 jobs off the airport property are directly attributed to off-airport visitor spending, totaling nearly 1,500 jobs.
- Give a voice to businesses operating at the airport and facilitate conversation and information transfer between businesses and surrounding communities.
- Increase awareness in the City of Wilsonville, Clackamas, Marion and Washington Counties of the increasing economic value of businesses operating at the airport.
- Organize networking opportunities in the region promoting community awareness of the increasingly positive economic contribution to the area brought by businesses operating at the airport.
- Increase awareness of aviation in community planning
AAOA Advisory Board
Chair – Bruce Bennett, Aurora Aviation
Vice-Chair – Mark Pilon, Helicopter Transport Services
Mike Griffiths, Life Flight Networks
Greg Lund, FlIR Systems
Ted Millar, Southend Corporate Airpark
Dan Riches, Columbia Helicopters
Dick Van Grunsven, Vans Aircraft
Dave Waggoner, Willamette Aviation
Don Wilson, Wilson Construction
Tony Helbling- PAAM Representative (Ex-Officio)
Mitch Swecker- ODA Representative (Ex-Officio)