NTSB Member Robert Sumwalt to speak at SC Aerospace Conference

The second annual South Carolina Aerospace Conference and Expo announces that National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) member Robert Sumwalt will be one of the keynote speakers for the conference, which will be held on Aug. 26-27, 2015.

Sumwalt, a native South Carolinian and inductee in the South Carolina Aviation Hall of Fame, will speak at a general session on Aug. 26 from 2:45 p.m. until 3:15 p.m. The focus of Sumwalt’s talk will be on the emerging technologies that the NTSB is following and monitoring for safer flight.

Robert Sumwalt

We are honored to welcome Robert Sumwalt as one of our keynote speakers at the second annual South Carolina Aerospace Conference and Expo,” said Steve Townes, Chairman of SC Aerospace and President of Ranger Aerospace.  “Mr. Sumwalt will bring over 30 years of flight experience and almost 10 years of NTSB board member experience to our conference and we are eager to learn more about his expertise.

Sumwalt was appointed as the 37th Member of the National Transportation Safety Board in August 2006, whereupon President George W. Bush designated him as Vice Chairman of the Board for a two-year term. In November 2011, President Barack Obama reappointed him to an additional five-year term.

Since joining the Board, Sumwalt has been an advocate for improving safety in all modes of transportation, including teen driver safety, impaired driving, distractions in transportation and several rail safety initiatives.

Before joining the NTSB, Sumwalt was a pilot for 32 years, including 24 years with Piedmont Airlines and US Airways. He accumulated over 14,000 flight hours. During his tenure at US Airways, he worked on special assignment to the flight safety department. Following his airline career, Sumwalt managed the corporate aviation department for SCANA.

Sumwalt earned an undergraduate degree from the University of South Carolina and a Master of Aeronautical Science (with Distinction) from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, with concentrations in aviation/aerospace safety systems and human factors aviation systems.

The South Carolina Aerospace Conference and Expo are designed to bring together leaders from the aviation industry, government and the investment community. The event highlights South Carolina’s emergence as a top destination for aerospace manufacturing and research and will feature:

  • Tours of The McNAIR Center for Aerospace Innovation and Research, the Richland One Challenger Learning Center and the USC Conditioned Based Maintenance Center;
  • General sessions on K-12 education initiatives, advanced materials for aerostructures, big data and aerospace and unmanned aerial systems;
  • Technology breakout sessions and workforce/industry breakout sessions

The conference is organized by the South Carolina Council on Competitiveness, the McNair Center for Aerospace Innovation and Research at the University of South Carolina, the South Carolina Department of Commerce, the South Carolina Aeronautics Commission and the South Carolina Aviation Association.  The Boeing Company is the title sponsor.

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