- Advocacy & Policy
- Research Center
Aerospace and Defense: The Strength to Lift America
September 09, 2010
A week-long commemoration of the contributions of the aerospace and defense industry launches Sunday, Sept. 12. Events during National Aerospace Week will highlight the industry’s key role in the nation’s economy, national security and technological superiority.
“National Aerospace Week recognizes more than 800,000 aerospace and defense workers who make this industry so important to our nation,” said Marion C. Blakey, president and CEO of the Aerospace Industries Association. “We’re looking forward to involving our employees, aerospace companies, national and state officials and other supporters of aerospace during the celebration.”
The aerospace and defense industry employs 819,000 workers across the nation, supporting more than two million middle-class jobs with more than 30,000 suppliers from all 50 states. AIA estimates that conservatively U.S. aerospace sales alone account for three to five percent of the country’s gross domestic product.
In July the U.S. House of Representatives passed a resolution introduced by Rep. Vern Ehlers (D-MI) permanently establishing the third week of September as National Aerospace Week. Ehlers, who also co-chairs the House Aerospace Caucus, described the U.S. aerospace industry as a “powerful reliable source of employment, innovation and export income.”
A similar resolution is expected to be introduced by the Senate next week. Last year the industry commemorated National Aerospace Day, which was expanded this year to provide ample opportunity to collaborate with many groups and communities that support the aerospace industry nationwide.
Some of the organizations planning National Aerospace Week activities include the Colorado Association for Manufacturing and Technology, Oklahoma Aerospace Alliance, Northrop Grumman’s Weightless Flights of Discovery, the Air Force Association and the National Association of State Aviation Officials. Advertisements with the theme, “Aerospace and Defense: The Strength to Lift America” will run in national and trade publications.
AIA is organizing a “March to the Hill” by AIA supplier company executives to highlight not only the strength of the industry from the small business perspective, but also how the Congress can help make it a more effective job generator. Suppliers are particularly burdened by excessive oversight and regulations in the areas of government contracting and export control modernization. The nation’s outmoded tax policy is also affecting their competitiveness.
National Aerospace Week is a national celebration commemorating the contributions of the aerospace and defense industry to U.S. economic vitality, national security and technological superiority. For more information, visit www.NationalAerospaceWeek.org.