Mark Hartz of Almyra, Ark., Elected 2012 NAAA President

For Immediate Release
Contact: Jay Calleja
Phone: (202) 546-5722

News Release: Mark Hartz of Almyra, Ark., Leads NAAA’s 2012 Officer Team

WASHINGTON, D.C. – January 3, 2012 – The National Agricultural Aviation Association (NAAA) is pleased to announce that Mark Hartz of Almyra, Ark., has been elected President of NAAA for 2012. Hartz is the co-owner of Grand Prairie Dusters Inc., a two-airplane operation that has been in business for 23 years. Hartz and his business partner, Scott Goetz, operate off of a municipal airport and have the added responsibility of managing the airport. They are primarily a rice operation but also treat wheat, soybeans and corn. 

Picture of NAAA's new president in front of his ag plane2012 NAAA President Mark Hartz in front of his Thrush aircraft.Hartz’s term as president marks his third officer role at the national level. He served as NAAA’s treasurer in 2001 and vice president in 2011 during Rick Richter’s administration. NAAAA’s full Board of Directors consists of 42 State, Regional and Allied Industry Directors, the NAAA officer team, the WNAAA and NAAREF Presidents, the immediate Past Treasurer and five Past Presidents, as well as numerous committee appointees. Hartz said he finds it gratifying to see such a large group of people working together united for a common cause. “It’s an education to see exactly what NAAA does and how much time is involved. And some of my greatest friends on earth come from my association with the NAAA,” Hartz said.

In addition to his previous officer roles with NAAA, Hartz has served on the Arkansas Agricultural Aviation Association’s Board for many years, including filling all of its officer positions. He has been an aviation safety counselor for FAAST since 1999 and in 2011 won the prestigious Regional FAAST Team Award.

Serving alongside Hartz on NAAA’s 2012 officer team are Leif Isaacson of Terreton, Idaho, Vice President; Gaylon Stamps of Panhandle, Texas, Secretary; and Kyle Scott of Fort Morgan, Colo., Treasurer.

“I’m deeply humbled and honored to be asked to serve,” Hartz said of his duties over the next 12 months as NAAA’s highest elected officer. “It’s my intention to do the very best job that I can and I’m really looking forward to it.”

Leif Isaacson has been an ag pilot for 37 years and the owner and operator of Desert Air Ag since 1986. Desert Air uses four Turbine Air Tractors for ag work and a helicopter for county and sheriff work.

Isaacson is a longtime NAAA member and has been active on its Board of Directors for several years. He has been a PAASS presenter for the last five years and heavily involved in NAAREF, NAAA’s sister foundation. He served as NAAREF’s Vice President in 2011 and is continuing in that capacity in 2012, putting him in the unique position of filling the vice president’s post in NAAA and NAAREF simultaneously.

Gaylon Stamps is a second-generation ag pilot. He took over Stamps Spraying Service in 1975 when his father went into corporate aviation and has been an operator ever since. Stamps flies a Cessna at home, but for past four years he has been a “hired gun” flying for other operators. He taught his son-in-law how to be an ag pilot, and now Jason Davis does the majority of the aerial application work for Stamps Spraying Service as its chief pilot.

Stamps has long been active in NAAA and the Texas AAA (TAAA) and currently serves as the Texas Director on the NAAA Board. He chaired NAAA’s Communications Committee in 2010 and 2011 prior to being elected secretary. Stamps also is a member of the New Mexico and Oklahoma AAAs and serves as Secretary/Treasurer of the New Mexico AAA. Like Isaacson, Stamps is a PAASS presenter and has served on the NAAREF Board of Directors since 2006.

Stamps will have company as he serves as NAAA Secretary this year. His wife, Pat Stamps, was selected as WNAAA Vice President for 2012 and will serve alongside new WNAAA President Kathy Diehl.

Kyle Scott has been in the aerial application business for 22 years and flying since 1992. Scott Aviation services customers in Colorado, Wyoming and Nebraska and has a partnership in Iowa. Scott’s stable of aircraft include an Air Tractor 402A, a Garret Thrush and G10 Thrush, and a 620B Weatherly. In addition to serving as 2012 Treasurer, Scott has served as the Colorado Director on NAAA’s board.

The National Agricultural Aviation Association (NAAA) represents more than 1,700 members in 46 states. NAAA supports the interests of small business owners and pilots licensed as professional commercial aerial applicators that use aircraft to enhance food, fiber and bio-fuel production, protect forestry and control health-threatening pests.