VFS SFBAC 2020 Awards Call

2020 awards call and nomination form (PDF)

The Vertical Flight Society has a tradition of honoring the vertical flight industry’s most outstanding achievements. The local San Francisco Bay Area Chapter fulfills this function by providing awards for Outstanding Technical Paper, Rotorcraft and Powered-Lift Research, Technical Support, and Contribution to the VFS Local Chapter.

Each of you has an important and distinct role to play in identifying those of your colleagues deserving of special recognition. If there is someone, or a group of persons, you feel is making an outstanding contribution to the world of vertical flight, please select from the award categories listed below and make your nomination(s).

Nominations must be submitted using the information on the form attached to this letter. Nominations should be e-mailed (no postal service due to closure of facilities) to the Awards Committee no later than close of business on Friday, July 3, 2020. E-mail submissions can be sent to Christopher Silva, VFS SFBAC Awards Chair, at the email address in the PDF linked above. If you have any questions, please contact Chris at that email address. The awards presentation will be scheduled at a future date.


Velkoff Award for Outstanding Technical Paper

Awarded to an individual(s) for the best technical paper, written or published within the last 12 months, documenting a significant contribution to the field of vertical flight.

Schroers Award for Outstanding Rotorcraft Research

Awarded to an individual or group for a significant contribution to rotorcraft technology.

Franklin Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Powered-Lift Field

Awarded to an individual or group for a significant contribution to powered-lift technology (other than helicopters.)

Award for Outstanding Contribution to the AHS Local Chapter

Awarded to an individual who has shown dedication and enthusiasm toward furthering the goals and interests of the local AHS chapter.

Award for Outstanding Technical Support

Awarded to an individual or group for exceptional technical support of vertical flight operations, research, or experimentation (such as technicians, operators, crew chiefs, pilots, inspectors, etc.).

Lifetime Achievement Fellow

Awarded to an individual for sustained, outstanding contributions to the advancement of rotorcraft through a life-long dedication and outstanding technical and management leadership.

Winners Announced for 2019 SFBAC Awards

The Board of the San Francisco Bay Area Chapter of the Vertical Flight Society is pleased to announce the recipients of the 2019 Chapter Awards. Recipients of the awards are selected annually, from nominations submitted by SFBAC VFS members, by a special advisory board chaired by the past chapter president. These awards are an opportunity to recognize the outstanding work and significant accomplishments achieved by rotorcraft researchers in the San Francisco Bay Area. Winners will be honored at an Awards Banquet to be held on June 6, 2019 in Mountain View, CA. The winners are as follows:

Velkoff Award for Outstanding Technical Paper – Witold Koning, Wayne Johnson, and Håvard Grip, for their paper titled “Improved Mars Helicopter Aerodynamic Rotor Model for Comprehensive Analysis,” presented at the 44th European Rotorcraft Forum, Delft, the Netherlands, 18-31 September, 2018.

Schroers Award for Outstanding Rotorcraft Research – Brian Fujizawa, for his significant efforts keeping flight research front and center in Army Aviation S&T in returning the UH-60A flight research aircraft to not just flight status, but flight research status, all while on extended travel to Virginia.

Franklin Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Powered-Lift Field – The 699/Tiltrotor Test Rig Test Team, for safely and successfully conducting the full envelope evaluation of the first civil tiltrotor system that will enter commercial usage by 2020. This test was also the first use of the Tiltrotor Test Rig and served as a checkout and operational verification test of the completely new $30M national test capability for future generation tiltrotor aircraft.

Award for Outstanding Contribution to the VFS Local Chapter – Robert Ormiston and Irving Statler, for their incredible efforts in creating and editing the NASA Special Publication, “Figures of Merit – Remembrances of Those Who Built an Army-NASA Collaboration and a New Age of Rotary-Wing Technology, 1965 – 1985.” The first-person narratives of these memoirs are voices of the first few decades of SFBAC members, many of whom cite the activities of the AHS and the opportunities for learning, networking, and career enhancement and recognition the AHS provided.

Award for Outstanding Technical Support – Christopher Hartley, who for nearly 10 years supported the Tiltrotor Test Rig Development project and led the Air Force AEDC participation in the development of the TTR. He oversaw a multitude of integration, acceptance, and checkout activities from model prep, to tunnel installation and checkout. He then led the test team in executing the longest wind tunnel entry in the history of the 40- by 80-Foot Wind Tunnel with the successful completion of the 699/TTR wind tunnel test.

Lifetime Achievement Award – Wally Acree is recognized for his 40+ year career serving the nation as a NASA rotorcraft researcher. Wally’s contributions began with the XV-15 Tiltrotor Research Aircraft flight demonstration and Advanced Technology Blades Programs. He then was involved with a multitude of technology programs, including the MDHC Canard Rotor Wing, JVX OSRF, JMR tiltrotor, the Langley Research Center TDT WRATS model, and the TDT TRAST model. Finally, for the past decade, Wally has led the engineering development and checkout of the Tiltrotor Test Rig as TTR Technical Director. Thanks largely to Wally’s efforts, the TTR will enable future experimental research on the fundamental aeromechanics of tiltrotor systems and on the designs of advanced tiltrotors for decades to come.