Aerospace, Aviation Take Statehouse Spotlight
January 27, 2015
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  • Indianapolis, Ind. — Indiana’s aviation and aerospace industries will be on display at the Indiana Statehouse this week. As the State of Indiana continues to announce significant economic development deals in the aerospace sector, members of the Indiana Aerospace and Defense Council and the Aviation Association of Indiana will fill the Statehouse rotunda on Wednesday morning to highlight the industry’s impact on Indiana’s economy.

    “This ‘Day at the Statehouse’ event brings together a diverse collection of companies and universities to raise awareness within the General Assembly, as well as the general public, that Indiana’s aerospace sector is thriving and poised for future growth,” said Ryan Metzing, director of the Indiana Aerospace and Defense Council, a Conexus Indiana initiative. “After a successful 2014 for aerospace investment in our state, this event should help continue that momentum and get 2015 off to a great start.”

    “Indiana has a rich aviation history and provides significant economic impact,” said Bart Giesler, executive director of the Aviation Association of Indiana. “Our businesses benefit from strong ties with nationally leading university partners, who deliver strong educational aerospace programs. We hope this event will help us showcase this vibrant and growing industry sector and give us yet another platform to show the important role aerospace plays in our economy.”

    Last year, Indiana saw significant aerospace announcements from BAE Systems, GE Aviation, Alcoa and the University of Notre Dame, all of which announced either major expansions or new facilities. Indiana Governor Mike Pence and Secretary of Commerce Victor Smith also led a delegation of State and industry leaders on an economic development mission to the Farnborough International Airshow in July 2014.

    “As stewards of the former Navy Ordinance Plant where Indiana produced the Norden bombsite and helped win World War II, Raytheon employees in Indianapolis strive daily to continue innovating for our nation, our customers and most importantly, to serve and protect those in our Armed Forces,” said Rudy Lewis, vice president, Platform Sustainment & Modernization and site executive for the Indianapolis Facility. “Raytheon’s presence of more than 1,500 employees and 275 suppliers from across Indiana ensures we deliver the best products in every aspect of our business. Indiana provides the workforce, commitment and innovation that are helping drive our company and our industry forward in the name of national security.”

    On Wednesday, the following companies will showcase their contributions to Indiana’s economy: AAR Corporation, Alcoa, C&A Tool Engineering, Element Materials, Exelis, Garrity Tool Company, Haynes International, J&L Dimensional Services, Kessington Machine Products, Major Tool & Machine, Marion Manufacturing, MSP Aviation, Praxair Surface Technologies, Raytheon, Riverside Manufacturing, Rolls-Royce, Tech Castings, and XADS.

    “Rolls-Royce is honored to be part of this important aerospace and defense showcase at the Statehouse. Many people would be surprised to know the positive economic and fiscal impacts that our industry has on our state, either through direct jobs or spending with Indiana suppliers. For every person that works for an aerospace company, almost 2 more people – 1.72 Hoosiers to be exact – are employed from the economic activity,” said Joel Reuter, vice president of communications, Rolls-Royce North America. “We’re pleased to have an opportunity to speak to our lawmakers and the general public about it.”

    About Conexus Indiana

    Conexus Indiana is the state’s advanced manufacturing and logistics initiative, dedicated to making Indiana a global leader. Conexus is focused on strategic priorities like workforce development, creating new industry partnerships and promoting Indiana’s advantages in manufacturing and logistics. Learn more at

About the Aviation

    Association of Indiana

    The Aviation Association of Indiana (AAI) represents public use airports across the State of Indiana before the Indiana General Assembly and other state and local units of government. AAI also serves to educate the policy makers and the public about the economic impacts and benefits of general aviation to the communities they serve.