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Sometimes "Bringing the Industry Together" means taking a moment to pay tribute to our own.
In the category of recognition for outstanding contribution to the industry two trail blazing icons come to mind - Carl Agar and Alf Stringer. Back in the spring of 1947 they were both more or less freshly demobilized from the RCAF. Carl had been an instructor pilot, and Alf an engineer. Hearing that a helicopter had recently been certified for commercial service, they went over to the States to buy what would be the first helicopter ever registered in Canada - a Bell 47B-3. Four years later their company was already the largest commercial helicopter operator in the world.
Okanagan Helicopters having eventually been integrated into Canadian Helicopters Corporation, the company Alf and Carl founded continues to lay claim to the title of "the world's largest.". In any case, they forged on from their initial successes to spend the rest of their lives as, among other things, mentors to several leading helicopter operators.
To honour these distinguished pioneers, the HAC Board has devised a unique tribute. They will not simply receive an HAC award for their unprecedented accomplishments, their names will be associated with an HAC Award to be presented by the HAC Board to one of our new generation of leaders in the helicopter industry. The HAC Board of Directors will therefore, from time to time, bestow the Carl Agar/Alf Stringer Award, upon persons having made an outstanding contribution to the Canadian Helicopter Industry.
To propose someone for the Carl Agar/Alf Stringer Award please contact HAC staff or Directors.
2016 - Donald (Don) Stubbs, Bill Yearwood
2015 - Jim Davies, Terry Jones
2014 - Grant Louden, Jan Rustad
2013 - John Ward, Keith "KO" Ostertag, Greg Wyght
2012 - Al Eustis (Robert)
2011 - Neil J. Armstrong
2010 - Jan Elbe
2006 - Pierre Looten
2004 - David Whyte
2003 - Bob Cameron
2002 - Gordon Askin
2001 - Al Soutar