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Chris Booysen - Special Acknowledgement
Aero Club of South Africa - Honorary Diploma
Chris answered his calling to aviation by completing his Private Pilots License in 1990. This was followed by a Night Rating in 1996 and an Instrument Rating in 1999. Since early in his flying career he has been involved in sport flying and has notably achieved 3rd place in the 1996 President's Trophy Air Race.
It is in the representation arena that Chris' capacity to make sacrifices in the interests of aviation shone brightly in what at times is a dark environment.
Chris set the tome of things to come when in 1990 he was elected onto the Algoa Flying Club committee where he served for 15 years. During this period his work on projects such as the implementation of the requirements of the Air Services Act won him widespread recognition
In 1996 he took on the additional responsibility of treasurer of the South African Power Flying Association committee, a post he occupied with distinction until his appointment as Chairman in 2004. During his tenure on the SAPFA committee Chris has become known as one of General Aviation's most redoubtable promoters. His efforts to curb the infringements of our right to fly are well illustrated by his contributions to the Part 61 consultations, ATNS and SAWS fees, averting compulsory fitment of autopilots for night flying, challenging the 12 year overhaul requirement and contributions to the NTCA discussion paper. In addition he also acts as editor of the "Joystick" magazine and is in fact its most prolific contributor. Of further note are his efforts to establish a milieu that will encourage the advancing of Aero Club and FAI objectives for record setting in South Africa.
His propensity for hard work and willingness to take up the cause on behalf of others quickly catapulted Chris into various leadership positions, particularly that of Chairman of the Algoa Flying Club and manager of the Protea team at the 2004 and 2006 World Rally and Precision Flying Championships. While tirelessly working on the daily requirements associated with his responsibilities, Chris has always remained focussed on the long term health of aviation. With this in mind he was instrumental in setting up the Aviation Watch South Africa information network to counter apathy of which General Aviation so often stands accused.
Chris' unremitting selfless sacrifice since 1990, and specifically in the last three years, has made him a true champion of "Preservation of Free Flight" and wholly deserving of the Aero Club "Honorary Diploma"