AEA Names Member, Associate Member of the Year

RENO, Nev., March 30 — Matthew Fowle of Mid-Continent Instruments West was named the 2007 AEA Member of the Year, and AirCell received the 2007 AEA Associate Member of the Year honor at today’s AEA Annual Awards Luncheon, which took place during the AEA International Convention & Trade Show in Reno, Nev.

AEA Member of the Year

Matthew Fowle has been enjoying a successful career in the aircraft instrument field since 1983. His diverse experience includes installation, design, customer service and sales. In addition, he has been a business owner and a business manager, and he is a skilled bench technician.

Since 1991, Fowle has been the general manager of Mid-Continent Instruments West in Van Nuys, Calif. He is responsible for all aspects of the operation. Under his management, Mid- Continent West has become one of the most respected sources for quality aircraft instruments in the world.

Born and raised in Portland, Ore., Fowle relocated to southern California in 1986. He is an active member of many organizations, including AEA, NBAA, HAI, AOPA, EAA, ALEA, and the Van Nuys Condor Squadron. He also serves on the AEA board of directors.

This award, voted on by industry peers, recognizes an individual who is an active participant in AEA events and activities, as well as for the individual's contributions to the general aviation electronics industry.

AEA Associate Member of the Year

The 2007 AEA Associate Member of the Year recipient, AirCell, is a company born of the idea to reuse cellular frequencies in the air to bring affordable communications to every business and private aircraft in America.

Its first wide-scale product, the TrimConnect 3100D, was developed in conjunction with Trimble Navigation, and sold through Trimble avionics dealers. Since those early days, AirCell has grown to become a leading provider of air-toground telecommunications, achieving a number of enviable successes.

In 2002, AirCell began expanding its network service offerings beyond the original cellular network, adding its first satellite-based product. AirCell became the only company authorized by the FCC and FAA to use cellular frequencies for in-flight communications. The company holds more than 30 patents on its airborne telecom innovations, and has sold more than 5,000 systems. AirCell’s products now are offered as standard or optional equipment by virtually every aircraft manufacturer in business aviation.

With all the success it has achieved, perhaps AirCell's single biggest milestone came in 2006, when it won the exclusive nationwide air-to-ground broadband license in an FCC spectrum auction, rewarding years of planning and vision. Currently, AirCell is at work developing its pioneering new wireless broadband service for business aircraft and airlines.

This award, voted on by authorized dealers of the honorees, recognizes a manufacturer or distributor for the company's service and support to the industry.