eaa_15The Experimental Aircraft Association recognized the contributions made to the world of flight by five aviators as they were inducted into the EAA Sport Aviation Halls of Fame on November 10 during an induction ceremony at the EAA Aviation Center in Oshkosh, Wisconsin.

The five aviators each represent a spectrum of aviation within the EAA community and have achieved notable successes within their particular realm of flight:

  • EAA Ultralight Hall of Fame: Tracy Knauss of Chattanooga, Tennessee
  • International Aerobatic Club Hall of Fame: Robert Armstrong of Bishop, Georgia
  • Vintage Aircraft Association Hall of Fame: Phil Coulson of Lawton, Michigan
  • Warbirds of America Hall of Fame: Doug Champlin (posthumous)
  • EAA Homebuilders Hall of Fame: Jim Bede (posthumous)

The EAA Sport Aviation Halls of Fame were established to honor the outstanding achievements of men and women in aviation who share the spirit of EAA and its community. Those inducted into the hall of fame are selected by their peers for the myriad contributions made to their respective areas of aviation.

In addition, Don and Joanie Moder of Appleton, Wisconsin, received the Henry Kimberly Spirit of Leadership Award for their efforts on behalf of EAA and the local community. Don Moder has been a longtime grounds crew volunteer at the EAA Aviation Center, while Joanie Moder has volunteered in the retail and merchandise areas.



HOMEBUILDERS HALL OF FAME – Jim Bede (EAA Lifetime 3758): An Ohio native, Bede made his first foray into the experimental aviation world with his original BD-1. It had innovative features that included bonding the aluminum structure instead of riveting. His later designs included the BD-2 and BD-4, and the iconic BD-5 and BD-5J, the latter which was powered by a jet engine and became known for its flying sequence s in the James Bond movie Octopussy. Bede died in July 2015.

VINTAGE AIRCRAFT ASSOCIATION HALL OF FAME – Phil Coulson (EAA Lifetime 71350): Coulson began his aviation career in the military with service in the U.S. Air Force. He learned to fly in a Piper J-5 Cruiser and became an EAA fly-in volunteer in the early 1960s. His vintage aircraft passion led him in particular to antique Waco aircraft. He served as president of the American Waco Club for 20 years.

Coulson was also a longtime board member of the Vintage Aircraft Association and chairman at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh, as well as an aircraft judge.

INTERNATIONAL AEROBATIC CLUB HALL OF FAME – Robert Armstrong (EAA 113152): Armstrong learned to fly in high school, and soon found a strong interest in aerobatic flight. He finished second in the U.S. National Aerobatic Championships in 1998 in his first year of competition. Since then, he has qualified for the American team 10 times and participated in the World Aerobatic Championships.

Armstrong has more than 17,000 hours of total flight time, including thousands of hours as an airline pilot. His 5,000-plus hours of sport aviation flying time includes 1,600 hours of aerobatic flight time.

ULTRALIGHT HALL OF FAME – Tracy Knauss: Knauss began his aviation interest in hang gliding in the mid-1970s and quickly discovered a need for a publication that informed pilots about hang gliding and the new ultralight craze. That initial publication, Glider Rider, evolved into Light Sport and Ultralight Flying magazine. Knauss became known around the world for his publication that shows the commonality in flying transcends languages. Through its 40 years of publication that recently ended, Knauss’ magazine was a key information source for everyone involved in the lightest end of sport aviation.

WARBIRDS HALL OF FAME – Doug Champlin (EAA 62048): Champlin’s passion for preserving military aircraft extends to all eras, from World War I to the Vietnam War period. His Champlin Air Museum in Mesa, Arizona, became a magnet for warbird enthusiasts from around the world. The facility also became the home base for the American Fighter Aces Association and the Flying Tigers Association.

After Champlin retired, the entire collection was moved in 2002 to the Museum of Flight in Seattle, where it is displayed in the museum’s Personal Courage Wing. There, the airplanes and stories of the people who flew them can be preserved for posterity. Champlin died in May 2013, leaving behind a unique legacy in aviation.



1993: Paul Poberezny, S.J. “Steve” Wittman, George Bogardus

1994: Bernie Pietenpol, Bob Burbick, Ray Stits

1995: Tony Bingelis, Molt Taylor, John Thorp

1996: Sam Burgess, Nick D’Apuzzo, Ed Heath, Volmer Jensen

1997: Ladislao Pazmany, William Ghan, Harold Best-Devereux

1998: Curtis Pitts, Burt Rutan, Bill Warwick

1999: Henri Mignet, Richard Van Grunsven, Chris Heintz

2000: Jean Delemontez, Leslie Long

2001: John Monnett

2002: Jack Cox, Ken Brock

2003: William Chana

2004: Bob Whittier, Pete Bowers

2005: Robert Bushby

2006: Edgar Lesher, B.J. Schramm

2007: Randy Schlitter

2008: John W. Dyke

2009: Lance A. Neibauer

2010: Dean Wilson

2011: Ed Fisher

2012: Wes Schmid

2013: Phillip J. Lockwood

2014: George Pereira

2015: Tom Hamilton

2016: Jim Bede



1987: Jose Luis Aresti, Duane Cole, Curtis Pitts, Frank Price

1988: Marion Cole, Mike Murphy, Betty Skelton

1989: Robert L. Heuer, Beverly Howard, Harold Krier

1990: Lincoln Beachey, Bob Herendeen, Charlie Hillard, Art Scholl

1991: Leo Loudenslager, Mary Gaffaney

1993: Neil Williams, Clint McHenry

1998: Bill Barber, Rodney Jocelyn, Tex Rankin, Harold Neumann, Tom Poberezny

1999: Henry Haigh

2000: Gene Beggs

2001: Mike Heuer

2002: Bill Thomas, Bob Davis

2003: Don Taylor

2004: Betty Stewart, Dorothy Hester

2005: Patty Wagstaff

2006: Gene Soucy

2007: Debby Rihn-Harvey, Bill Kershner

2008: William B. “Bill” Finagin

2009: Robert A. “Bob” Hoover

2010: Jimmy Franklin

2011: Tony LeVier

2012: Giles Henderson

2013: William Joseph “Bill” Adams

2014: Sammy Mason

2015: Sean D. Tucker

2016: Robert Armstrong



1993: E.E. “Buck” Hilbert, George York

1995: Cole Palen, Kelly Viets, Joe Juptner

1997: Paul Poberezny, Ann Pellegreno, Jim Younkin, Harold Armstrong

1999: Gene Chase, Edward C. Wegner, Tom Flock

2000: Jack Cox

2001: Dr. Roy Wicker, Ted Koston

2002: John M. Miller

2003: Al Kelch, Nick Rezich

2004: Espie “Butch” Joyce

2005: Richard Knutson, Charlie Nelson

2006: Charles W. Harris

2007: Chet Peek

2008: Bill Pancake

2009: Stephen Pitcairn

2010: Morton Lester

2011: John W. Underwood

2012: Clyde Smith Jr.

2013: Susan Dusenberry

2014: Timothy Talen

2015: Dale “Gus” Gustafson

2016: Phil Coulson



1995: Paul Poberezny, Walt Ohlrich, John Baugh, Bill Harrison, Jerry Walbrun

1996: Dick Dieter, Charlie Nogle

1997: Sue Parish, Rudy Frasca, Jeff Ethell

1998: John Ellis, Randy Sohn

1999: William Dodds, Richard Ervin

2000: Dave Schlingman

2001: Lincoln Dexter, Edward Maloney

2002: Frank C. Sanders

2003: Chuck Doyle, Lloyd Parker Nolen

2004: Howard Pardue

2005: Kermit Weeks, Steve Hinton

2006: Jack Harrington, Daryl Lenz

2007: Wilson “Connie” Edwards

2008: Connie Bowlin

2009: George H. Baker

2010: Harold D. “Hal” Weekley

2011: David B. Lindsay Jr.

2012: Preston (Pete) Parish

2013: Lee Lauderback

2014: Jay Wisler

2015: Nelson Ezell

2016: Doug Champlin



1999: Homer Kolb, John Moody, Chuck Slusarczyk

2000: Boris Popov, Wayne Ison

2001: Mike Sacrey

2002: John Chotia, Tom Peghiny

2003: Mike Jacober

2004: Klaus Hill, Bert Howland

2005: Larry Mauro

2006: Bob Lovejoy, Volmer Jensen

2007: Mike Markowski

2008: Mike Loehle

2009: Roy Pinner

2010: John Ballantyne

2011: Jack McCornack

2012: Taras Kiceniuk Jr.

2013: Frank Beagle

2014: Lowell Farrand

2015: Leonard Milholland

2016: Tracy Knauss

About EAA – EAA embodies the spirit of aviation through the world’s most engaged community of aviation enthusiasts. EAA’s 200,000 members and 900 local chapters enjoy the fun and camaraderie of sharing their passion for flying, building and restoring recreational aircraft. For more information on EAA and its programs, call 800-JOIN-EAA (800-564-6322) or go to www.eaa.org. For continual news updates, connect with www.twitter.com/EAA.