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Helicopter Association International (HAI) has announced that Thomas “TJ” Hall, airbase lead mechanic for Air Methods, is the 2019 winner of HAI’s Salute to Excellence Rolls-Royce Excellence in Helicopter Maintenance Award.
With this award, HAI recognizes an individual for longstanding excellence in helicopter maintenance, maintenance instruction or supervision, or a single significant contribution to helicopter maintenance. The award will be presented at HAI’s Salute to Excellence Awards luncheon at HAI Heli-Expo 2019 in Atlanta.
Hall started his career as a young enlisted helicopter mechanic and crew chief in the Marine Corps during the Vietnam War, and March 2019 will usher in his 50th year in Helicopter Maintenance.
After spending 12 years in the Marines and with multiple overseas deployments, Hall entered the civilian world of helicopter maintenance, obtaining his Airframe and Powerplant (A&P) license and going to work for Burnside-Ott as a contractor at Naval Air Station Whiting Field. From there, Hall was hired by ERA Helicopters working in Louisiana in the petroleum industry until he transitioned to the Helicopter Air Ambulance industry with Air Methods in 1992. Nearly 30 years later, Hall remains working with Air Methods to this present day.
Over his career, Hall served as Air Method’s lead mechanic at three different bases. He entered the management side of the business serving as the Program Aviation Manager (a job normally held by a pilot) for MedCenter Air in Charlotte, North Carolina, and was then promoted to the Southeastern Regional Area Maintenance Manager.
After nearly a decade in the world of maintenance management, Hall decided to go back to “the line” and worked as a traveling relief mechanic before coming back to Charlotte his current home, and is once again working as a base lead mechanic.
Hall’s insight both as a mechanic and a leader have had a tremendously positive effect on Air Methods program. He is always willing to work, and he most recently volunteered to be the “deployed” mechanic for the FEMA recovery during Hurricane Florence.
The award will be presented at the Salute to Excellence Awards luncheon during HAI Heli-Expo 2019. HAI Heli-Expo, the world’s largest helicopter trade show and exhibition, will be held at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta, Georgia, March 4 to 7, with the Exhibit Hall open March 5 to 7.