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The National Aviation Hall of Fame Reveals the “Class of 2023”

Two iconic history-making pilots, two groundbreakers in aviation policy, an Apollo-era astronaut, and a commercial aerospace pioneer, are all included in this remarkable group.

DAYTON, Ohio – December 7, 2022-The National Aviation Hall of Fame (NAHF) is thrilled to announce the following individuals who have been selected for the Class of 2023 and look forward to their pending acceptance and Enshrinement at the annual ceremony to be held in Washington DC in Fall 2023. NAHF Board of Nominations Chair Tom Lodge revealed the Class of 2023 before an audience of over 500 attendees at the 2022 Enshrinement Dinner and Ceremony in Dayton, OH. Attendees of the NAHF's annual induction event included several NAHF Enshrinees including Charlie Bolden, Eileen Collins, Bob Crippen, Ron Fogleman, Joan Sullivan Garrett, Hoot Gibson, John and Martha King, and Story Musgrave, as well as many industry leaders and specially invited guests. Each year, the NAHF Board of Nominations, a voting body comprised of over 130 aviation professionals nationwide, selects from a prestigious group of nominated air and space pioneers to be recognized for their achievements with induction into the NAHF. Since its founding in 1962, 254 people have been honored with induction into the only Congressionally chartered, aviation hall of fame in the United States. “We believe that this is an excellent class and we are already looking forward to their induction in Washington, DC”, NAHF Board of Nominations Chair Tom Lodge said. “From pioneers Benn and Coffey to visionaries Gittens, Stimpson, and Musk, and to aerospace hero Haise, the NAHF’s Class of 2023 represents the best in aviation. We applaud the Board of Nominations for their challenging and thorough work.” The NAHF Class of 2023, is a diverse group representing a broad range of enduring contributions to both the advancement of flight and human exploration of space:

(The late) Velta Benn- Aviation pioneer who began as a WASP and went on to fly for over 63 years, amassing 55,000 flying hours as a CFI, FAA Examiner, and safety expert.

(The late) Cornelius Coffey Aviation pioneer who, despite many racial barriers, became a pilot and mechanic who opened a flight school that trained over 1,500 students, including hundreds of Tuskegee Airmen.

Angela Gittens- Ground breaking leader who shaped airport security and policy as the CEO of multiple large-hub airports, including ATL, and Director General of ACI-World.

Fred Haise- US Marine, fighter pilot, test pilot, Apollo astronaut, Space Shuttle astronaut, aerospace executive, and advocate. Vast influence and experience in US aerospace history. Best selling author.

Elon Musk- Entrepreneur and leader in commercial aerospace. Founder of Space X, first private company to put crewed spacecraft in orbit and dock with the ISS. Dominates global market share and influences aerospace trends.

(The Late) Ed Stimpson- Business aviation legend. Over 40 years, served in multiple leadership roles and drove policy in key areas such as fuel, education, and essential in the General Aviation Revitalization Act in 1994.

Partnerships, sponsorships, and ticket sales will be available in early 2023. Please contact the NAHF and watch for Enshrinement details.

About The National Aviation Hall of Fame- Formed through an Act of Congress in 1964, the National Aviation Hall of Fame (NAHF) is dedicated to honoring America’s aerospace pioneers. Considered by many to be a true national treasure, the NAHF serves as the only Congressionally-chartered aviation hall of fame and works tirelessly to confidently promote the vision, innovation, skill, and courage of the national heroes who lent their genius to further our nation’s aerospace legacy. Founded and based in Dayton, OH, the NAHF is committed to informing the public of American aviation heroes, their accomplishments, and their impact on advances in aviation from Early Flight to Space Travel. The NAHF strives to create a distinctive educational resource that will inspire future generations to appreciate our nation’s extraordinary aviation heritage and the men and women who created it.

National Aviation Hall of Fame | 1100 Spaatz St., Dayton, OH 45433 | (937) 256-0944 |


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