DAYTON, Ohio – The National Aviation Hall of Fame (NAHF) has awarded its 2015 Milton Caniff Spirit of Flight Award to the “Pioneers of Stealth” in recognition of its contributions to the early development of low observables — or stealth — technology.
The annual award, established in 1981 and later renamed in tribute to longtime Hall of Fame supporter, Dayton native and acclaimed artist Milton Caniff, is presented to group or organization in honor of exceptional contributions to the advancement of flight.
According to the NAHF’s official 2015 award citation, “’The Pioneers of Stealth’ is a cadre of government and contractor personnel who collectively pioneered the revolutionary discipline of ‘low observable’ aircraft design, development, test, production, operations and sustainment. Their work was instrumental to the successful development of the B-2, F-117, F-22, F-35 and other aircraft and systems relying on stealth technology, of which much remains classified today.”
The award was formally presented earlier this year by NAHF Board of Trustees Secretary Fran Duntz at the Pioneers of Stealth annual reunion held in Williamsburg, Virginia. Accepting on behalf the Pioneers of Stealth was retired Air Force Colonel Jack Twigg, who led the initial cadre of Air Force engineers and program managers that managed the first low observables projects – Have Blue, Tacit Blue and, later, the F-117. Co-founded in 1990 by Twigg and Lt. Gen. Dick Scofield, USAF (Ret), the Pioneers of Stealth has approximately 100 members.