Business View Magazine - October 2018

108 109 also offer some maintenance on the field. Another group using the Airport is the local chapter of the EAA (Experimental Aircraft Association), which has various events throughout the year including multiple Young Eagles rallies. This is a program that allows children between the ages of 8 and 17 to have free introductory flights to try and get them interested and engaged in aviation. “There are two parts to what I like to push out there,” Gould states. “One is that we are extremely business- friendly. And on the other side, we are extremely community-friendly as well.We have a couple of different programs that I have put into place since I have been here, which try to promote aviation. There used to be a time when South Carolina was considered a black hole when it came to aviation, and nothing could be further from the truth.We have had an economic impact study done on a state level, and they have looked at all the different state airports.What it showed for our airport is that over a ten-year span, the economic activity went from $6.9 million in annu- al economic activity to now being $40.5 million annually.” “So my job,” he continues, “has been to foster the mindset that we will do everything in our power to ensure that your business can be suc- cessful while utilizing this Airport and making sure that your needs are met to the fullest extent possible, while at the same time, being cognizant ROCK HILL-YORK COUNTY AIRPORT and respectful of our local community to make sure that we have as little impact on their quality of life as is possible.” As an example of Rock Hill/York County Air- port’s commitment to community involvement and cooperation, it put in a voluntary noise abate- ment policy that has been very well received by the pilots and the local populace. There is also a conference room in the terminal building that Gould makes available to community groups, free of charge. He explains, “We probably have around a dozen different Home Owners Associations in this area, for example, and they utilize our facili- ties here and therefore get to see firsthand what is going on, on any given day. I also give different presentations to these folks to keep them in the loop as to what is going on so that there are no surprises for them. I want them to know that we are doing the best that we can to ensure that noise impacts are as minimal as possible for them, making sure that pilots are flying safely, and ensuring the most efficient way to have as little impact as possible on people who might be enjoying their regular day out in their yard or whatever.” “It is like night and day from when I first got here to now in terms of the perspective of what the Airport is,” concludes Gould. “And a lot of people are really starting to understand and to see the importance that the Airport brings and what a gem it is having this resource here for our community.” PREFERRED VENDOR n Skytech, inc. Skytech is a General Aviation sales, service, management, & charter organization representing the Piper and Pilatus PC12 and PC24 product lines, as well as quality pre-owned aircraft. With full-service FBO’s in Westminster, Maryland and Rock Hill, South Carolina, Skytech is ideally positioned to serve the Mid-Atlantic aviation community.