August 31, 2005 -- New Orleans city officials today said it could take months before residents evacuated from the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina would be allowed back into the devastated city, prompting the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) to regrettably announce that conditions are forcing the Association to move its 58th Annual Meeting & Convention from the city.
In acknowledging the necessity to move its Convention, NBAA expressed sympathy for the citizens of New Orleans, and pledged to provide charitable assistance to the city in the coming weeks.
"The NBAA and its Members join with the rest of America in expressing our sorrow and concern for the people affected by this terrible tragedy," said NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen. "It is unfortunate that we have no choice but to move our Convention. However, we look forward to returning to New Orleans when the city is again ready to accommodate our event."
Annual Meeting & Convention to Be Moved
Shortly after the NBAA indicated that it would continue to assess the opportunity to keep its planned 58th Annual Meeting & Convention in New Orleans, conditions there quickly deteriorated as a result of broken levees. By late yesterday, a complete evacuation was ordered.
As a result, NBAA, with the support of its Board of Directors, today notified New Orleans city officials of the Association's decision to relocate the Annual Meeting & Convention, and began the process of securing a new location for the Convention. The NBAA is focused on serving the interests of its Members and Convention Exhibitors, and – taking all the logistical and other challenges into consideration – expects to reach a decision shortly. NBAA will continue to provide information about the progress of its efforts.
A Pledge to New Orleans from Business Aviation
Once a new Convention location is chosen, the NBAA will designate a charity based in the city of New Orleans to receive a portion of the proceeds from the event. The Association also will give Convention exhibitors and attendees an opportunity to express their generosity while at the event.
In addition, the NBAA will facilitate efforts by the nation’s business aviation community to provide resources to relief and recovery efforts in the Gulf region. The following links are the best known at this time for Members to learn more about giving financial and other assistance to those in need:
NBAA thanks its Members for the input they have provided on this matter, and continues to welcome Member and Exhibitor feedback by e-mailing to firstname.lastname@example.org.