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Ultralights Hall of Fame

The EAA Ultralight Hall of Fame Award recognizes unique contributions by people and groups to ultralight aviation. Awardees are carefully chosen by a committee of their peers as outstanding examples of people who have enriched their sport. The Ultralight Hall of Fame Award celebrates those with the vision, talent or commitment to the ultralight movement to merit extraordinary notice. It's the highest honor Experimental Aircraft Association bestows upon the few so recognized.

Hall of Fame Inductees

2012 - Taras Kiceniuk Jr.: Owner and founder of Icarus Engineering since 1971, Taras Kiceniuk Jr. has designed and built several ultralight gliders over the decades, a few of which broke world records and have been held in high honor.

In 1971, Taras created the Icarus II biplane glider that set the world duration flight record of one hour and 11 minutes. Two years later, his Icarus V set the world duration record for high-performance hang gliders at two hours and 30 minutes. Additionally, in 1975, Taras' Icarus HPA-1 became the first human-powered plane to make unassisted flights in the United States.

As the chief engineer on the Gossamer Albatross project for human-powered flight across the English Channel, Taras was awarded a medal in 1979 by England's Prince Charles for his work. More recently, Taras was project director for Reginator from 2007 to 2009 and demonstrated the first atmospheric energy-gathering flight on May 31, 2007.

2011 - Jack McCornack: Jack McCornack designed and flew his first "powered hang glider" (as ultralights were called back in the day) in 1976. In 1979, Jack and his friend Keith Nicely astounded EAA convention attendees by flying two Pterodactyl Pfledge ultralights from California to Oshkosh- the first ultralights to fly into Oshkosh from anywhere- and from Oshkosh on to Kitty Hawk.

Jack's designs include the Cuyuna 430 ultralight engine (the industry standard in the early '80s, which he now describes as "a market survey for Rotax"), the Pterodactyl Ascender, and the original Buckeye and Six Chuter powered parachutes. In the 1990s he was America's top rated microlight competition pilot, winning two U.S. National Championships and representing the United States in four FAI World Microlight Championships. He is well known for his humorous and insightful writing on various aviation subjects, such as his column in Light Sport & Ultralight Flying magazine.

2010 - John Ballantyne: John Ballantyne, United States ultralight instructor registration No. 1, is a commercial pilot and certificated flight instructor for gliders. He is the only recipient of FAA commercial and flight instructor certificates in trike aircraft, and is a United States Hang Gliding Association-rated master hang glider pilot. John founded the United States Ultralight Association and served as its president and chief operating officer from 1985 to 2000.

In 2000, John was recognized by the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale CIMA Commission for 27 years as a pre-eminent leader in America for the ultralight and microlight sport. In 1996, he received the Moody Award, the United States Ultralight Association's highest honor, for outstanding contributions to American ultralight aviation.

2009 - Roy Pinner: Roy Pinner started in aviation as an 8-year-old playing with a rubber band-powered balsa model airplane. He worked his way up to radio controlled models, finally designing and building his own model aircraft in his late 20s for competition. In 1977, he competed in the United States Radio Control Aerobatic Masters Tournament. During a ski trip that year, he saw a powered hang glider flying around nearby. It piqued Pinner's interest, and he decided to build his own.

In 1979, he purchased a Hummer ultralight kit, and after building it, he took it to the EAA fly-in convention and won Reserve Grand Champion. The following winter he designed and built the single-place Drifter. He flew it the following summer and winter. In 1983, he designed and built a prototype Double Drifter with a friend and later put it into production in kit form. The Double Drifter is still produced and sold today.

Pinner started an electrical business in 1973 and retired in 2002. He and his wife, Rocky, have four children: Troy, Greg, Todd, and Scott. He received his private certificate in 1970, his instrument rating in 1974, and his seaplane rating in 2000. He has logged approximately 4,000 hours.

2008 - Mike Loehle: After Mike Loehle soloed at age 16, he fell in love with ultralight flying, which inspired him to participate in the Civil Air Patrol and attend the Air Force Academy in Colorado. Loehle has been an ultralight pilot since 1976, when he attended his first EAA fly-in convention and developed an interest in the aircraft. After visiting Oshkosh, Loehle purchased an Easy Riser and went on to design a tail and landing gear to stabilize it. During this time, he began to design engine mounts and operated an ultralight business, first from his parents’ basement and then in a T-hangar at Bowman Field in Louisville, Kentucky.

Loehle contributed to the “5151” Mustang by turning his idea of an ultralight P-51 Mustang into a flying machine and introduced the prototype at Oshkosh in 1985. It was a huge influence in the growth of ultralight aviation. He has manufactured aircraft kits for 28 years, including props, and has also developed a complete paint line. His designs are built and flown in 20 countries.

Loehle has received many awards, including Grand Champion Ultralight and Outstanding Craftsmanship at EAA AirVenture, Most Innovative Modifications at Sun ’n Fun, and the LAMA President’s Award.

2007 - Mike Markowski: Mike Markowski's aviation career began when he was contracted to write The Hang Glider's Bible, published in 1977, and The Encyclopedia of Homebuilt Aircraft - including Powered Hang Gliders, published in 1980. In 1981 Mike founded Ultralight Publications, and through his books, freelance writing, and full-page advertising, both in aviation and various popular magazines, he was able to share the sport with millions. Mike was instrumental in popularizing hang gliding on the east coast, where he co-founded the first two hang glider manufacturing companies. To date, Mike has published 35 books on ultralights, homebuilts, aircraft mechanics, aviation history, and model airplanes.

2006 - Volmer Jensen: Jensen, designer of the VJ-22 Sportsman, spent most of his life on the west coast and was involved in hang gliding as early as 1925 and again in the 1970s. Appalled by the number of fatal accidents, he was motivated by a desire to provide aerodynamically and structurally safer aircraft.

2006 - Bob Lovejoy: Lovejoy, created the Quicksilver rigid wing glider in 1972. Unlike other designs of the time, it was designed to have a tail and its wings were a more conventional Hershey Bar shape. In its day, the Quicksilver hang glider developed a hugh following among so-called "rigid wing" enthusiasts.

2005 - Larry Mauro: Mauro, of Mulberry, Fla., was not a pilot when he pitched in five dollars to by an Icarus II glider in 1972. He soon was hooked on flying, though, and shortly thereafter started the Ultralight Flying Machine Company. His designs include such pioneering ultralights as the Demoiselle, Solar Riser and Easy Riser.

2004 - Klaus Hill: Hill, who died in 1979, was a pioneer in ultralight flight as the designer of the Sailwing glider, the basis for the Twin Boomer and Delight Wing in the 1970s. His designs also included the Honeybee, Weedhopper, Hummer and Humbug soon followed.

2004 - Bert Howland: Howland, who passed away in 1995, made his mark in aviation in the 1980s. He developed such designs as the H-1 Meteor, H-2 Honey Bee, H-3 Pegasus and H-4 Chimp in the mid- to late 1980s. Howland also offered kits of the H-2 and H-3, while developing the two-place H-5 Gemini. He also turned to creating ultralight "warbird" replicas in the 1990s.

2003 - Michael Jacober: Jacober made his first mark on the ultralight world when he designed landing gear for the previously foot-launched Easy Riser ultralight. Jacober was the driving force behind ultralight aviation in Alaska for 20 years before his death in 2003.

2002 - John Chotia: Chotia deceased since 1981 was the designer of the Weedhopper line of Ultralights. As President of Weedhopper of Utah Chotia built and sold many designs, which have been a mainstay in the U.S. and overseas Ultralight markets.

2002 - Tom Peghiny: Peghiny of Ellington, CT was an early pioneer of hang gliding and early powered hang gliding. Tom is currently the President of Flightstar manufacturer of the Flightstar line of aircraft and also the President of H Power Ltd. Importer of the HKS sport plane engine.

2001 - W. Michael Sacrey: Sacrey of Voluntown, CT was an employee of the FAA who was assigned the project of writing the ultralight regulation FAR Part 103.

2000 - Boris Popov: Popov, of Afton, Minn., founded Ballistic Recovery Systems (BRS), the world pioneer in whole-aircraft parachute systems. The company began with ultralight recovery chutes before developing systems for general aviation use in the Cessna 150. BRS chutes are now standard equipment in the innovative Cirrus Aircraft.

2000 - Wayne Ison: Ison, of Morrison, Tenn., is president and CEO of TEAM Aircraft, as well as an aircraft designer and kit producer. He is the creator of the TEAM line of aircraft, including the miniMAX, HiMAX, Z-MAX, EROS, V-MAX, AirBike and Tandem Airbike. Ison has won dozens of awards and sold aircraft in 34 countries.

1999 - Homer Kolb: Kolb of Phoenixville, PA is the designer of the Kolb line of ultralight aircraft. Since 1956 Homer has designed and built lightweight aircraft. As past President of Kolb Aircraft he guided the Company to be a successful manufacturer of kit aircraft.

1999 - John Moody: Moody of Brandon, FL is widely recognized in the industry as the "father of ultralight". In a foot launched McCulloch 101 powered Icarus II hang glider on July 27, 1976 John was the first to demonstrate ultralight aviation at the annual EAA fly-in convention in Oshkosh, WI. From that point forward the world of ultralight aviation has grown.

1999 - Chuck Slusarczyk: Slusarczyk of Broadview Heights, OH, is the designer of the CGS Hawk line of ultralight aircraft. As the President of CGS Aviation he has guided the company for over 20 years. Model airplane champion, hang gliding enthusiast, and airplane designer Chuck is one of the industry's most interesting and entertaining personalities.

Nominations are accepted until March 1. Inductees will be announced at the awards banquet held in Oshkosh, WI, during the Fall EAA Board of Directors meeting. A display in the EAA AirVenture Museum lists the names of those selected to the EAA Ultralight Hall of Fame.

The members of the EAA Ultralight Council encourage you to nominate a deserving person or group for this award. Nominations must be made in writing on the Ultralight Hall of Fame nomination form. You can print the form from this web site, receive a form by contacting EAA Ultralight Programs at 920-426-6527, or by sending an email to ultralight@eaa.org.

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