DAYTON, Ohio – The National Aviation Hall of Fame (NAHF) will present its 2022 Spirit of Flight award to Wings of Hope, a global humanitarian organization that changes lives through the power of aviation.
Twice nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize, Wings of Hope relies on volunteer pilots to carry out its mission, which includes education outreach and medical transport. Founded 60 years ago, Wings of Hope began its work by sending aircraft to Kenya to deliver medical care and supplies. Since then, it has continued to grow and assist people worldwide regardless of political standing, economic status, or religious affiliation.
“The secret ingredient for Wings of Hope is our incredible group of dedicated volunteers,” said Wings of Hope President and CEO Bret Heinrich. “From purchasing to pilots, our volunteers make profound contributions to our mission. I am humbled to accept the Spirit of Flight Award on behalf of our amazing volunteers, staff, board, and most importantly, those we serve.”
The Spirit of Flight Award recognizes organizations that serve a special need of the nation and set high standards for excellence in the utilization of aerospace assets, NAHF officials explained.
“There is no higher calling than to save lives,” said NAHF President and CEO Amy Spowart. “To combine that with aviation is extraordinary. The Board of Trustees of the NAHF overwhelmingly and enthusiastically selected Wings of Hope from a list of worthy candidates. What set Wings of Hope apart from the other nominations is not only that they fulfill the criteria of the award, but also exceed it by sharing education grounded in their mission.”
Wings of Hope was nominated by NAHF enshrinee Patty Wagstaff.
“I am proud to magnify the message of Wings of Hope,” she said. “They serve without prejudice and offer lifesaving medical attention around the world. I also support their efforts to inspire the next generation of pilots, especially girls and young women, through their SOAR into STEM educational programming.”
Wings of Hope will receive the award Sept. 23, 2022, as part of the National Aviation Hall of Fame’s 58th Enshrinement events.