A speech celebrating Don O’Bannon’s time as Board Chair of the Airport Minority Advisory Council

As board chair of the Airport Minority Advisory Council, Don O’Bannon continued a strong tradition of remarkable leaders. Throughout his professional career he has fought for a level playing field and strived to create greater opportunities for minority, small, and women-owned businesses in the aviation industry.

Don’s style of leadership emphasized inclusiveness and encouraged broad participation. His welcoming spirit inspired many to get involved and contribute to furthering AMAC’s [v/o- A-MAC’s] growing national influence.

During his time as National Chairman, AMAC has made tremendous strides. Under his selfless guidance, Don worked tirelessly to educate airport commissioners, directors and legislators on how diversity in airport employment and contracting enables entire communities to benefit. As a result, the membership base grew significantly. His commitment to building lasting relationships proved instrumental in organizing the testimony of AMAC members on Capitol Hill. It was his passion, ability and willingness to lead that brought the reality of discrimination against DBE [v/o- D.B.E.] suppliers directly to congress, and ultimately challenged them to pass minority inclusive directives and policy. Through his direction and with the support he rallied, AMAC witnessed the implementation of AMAC’s National DBE database. This dedication has helped to increase the exposure of AMAC members and thousands of DBEs with the goal of procuring a greater number of federally funded contracts.

Don’s thoughtful nature helped to not only gain national influence but played a significant role in the growth of AMAC’s membership. And this growth and influence just may be the greatest testament to his time as national chairman. Throughout his tenure as chair Don was accessible to everyone. He shared his knowledge and insight with anyone who came calling. What defines him as a leader and more importantly as a man, is his unwavering attention to other people and his devotion to helping them live better lives. Thank you Don for everything you’ve shared with us. We appreciate your leadership and wish you well.


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