'A Gathering Of The Tribe'

Our headline is how one of our winners of this year’s Ground Support Leaders of the Year awards described the attendees at this month’s Cygnus Aviation Expo.

I went up to shake hands with Bill Jacob after he won our Lifetime Achievement Award.

“Back in the old days,” Bill told us during our packed Networking Party, “the readers of your magazine used to consider this show to be ‘a gathering of the tribe.’ ”

Bill no doubt has plenty of memories of getting together with the tribe. Our magazine has only been around for half of Bill’s career at Eastern Airlines and the United Parcel Service.

I like that phrase – a gathering of the tribe. It’s a great way to think about what we presented last week and what we plan for each issue of Ground Support Worldwide.

I became an official member of the tribe at the start of the week when we spent a Monday morning with Rico Villalobos, Southwest Airlines ramp manager and his ground crew outside Gate C2 at McCarran International Airport.

Baggage, we expected. But that wooden crate with “(250) TARANTULA SPIDERS” written in magic maker sort of threw us a bit. Most importantly, we filmed all this activity for a special webcast. Stay tuned.

The day after – more tribalism. This time 18 holes with a J&B Aviation outing. No spiders this time, but we played in 70 mph wind gusts. I ended up playing with another one of our winners – Chief Warrant Officer Gregory McDermott, United States Coast Guard, who earned our Team Leader award.

At the Expo, we saw new products, which we’ll cover in our next issue. Plus, we certainly met plenty of people who gave us interesting story ideas.

Finally, we think the biggest story of the week was what we plan for next year’s show. Find out more at http://aviationproslive.com.