The Society of Aviation and Flight Educators (SAFE) awarded Honorary Membership status to aerospace executive James Douglas during AirVenture 2010.

The son of Douglas Aircraft Company founder Donald Douglas, James Douglas has been a noted aerospace industry executive in his own right. He spent the early part of his career on the shop floor and later led the development of some of the most recognizable transport aircraft of all time, including the DC-8, DC-9, and DC-10. During his tenure as Vice President of Strategic Planning, sales grew so rapidly that seven new factories were required in six states and one foreign country. Six new aircraft models were also launched that included the MD-80, MD-11, and MD-90 series. James Douglas participated as a guest lecturer in the 2008 Lindberg Lecture Series, and served as an Adjunct Professor at USC where he taught “The Plane Truth” covering manufacturing processes and procedures.

James Douglas retired from McDonnell Douglas in 1991. Together with his brother, he formed Douglas International Group, an airline industry management and technology firm to assist in the development of new security and automation systems. He remains actively involved in the industry as a consultant. Douglas (seated to the right in the photo) stopped by the SAFE booth and chatted with members during AirVenture.

Douglas is SAFE’s second Honorary Member. In 2009, centenarian pilot Joe Grant was presented with SAFE’s first Honorary Membership (Grant passed away earlier this year).

About the author 

Rich Stowell (Lifetime Member)

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