Avionics News December 2013 - 13

In Memory: Robert A. (Bob) Kauffman
B Y

K E N

E L L I O T T ,

J E T C R A F T

C O R P O R A T I O N

RVSM from avionics OEMs, he was able to position the
On Monday, Nov. 4, 2013, the avionics community lost
company with lower-priced and well-developed upgrade
another key individual, as Robert A. "Bob" Kauffman,
programs.
80, of New Albany, Ohio, passed away peacefully.
Kauffman was born and raised in Columbus, Ohio.
Looking back, this was a distinct advantage, but
From the company's birth in 1958, he took Columbus,
a large monetary risk all the same. ElectroSonics
Ohio-based ElectroSonics, a division of
grew from strength to strength. One key
AiRadio Corp., from a startup business
byproduct of the many upgrade programs
to one of the world's top avionics service
undertaken was the development,
providers.
ownership and use of the supplemental
There are those who strive to be
type certificate, many of which were
leaders, and then there are the ones
obtained.
who are. Kauffman was one of those
One of Kauffman's strengths was
few. According to Bucky Oliver, another
mentoring, either directly or through his
aviation industry leader, "He taught
key employees. Some of these people who
respectfulness, the entrepreneurial spirit,
have themselves since contributed to the
Robert A. "Bob" Kauffman
professional and personal courtesy, and
avionics industry include Bill Reasinger,
mentoring," all traits that make our world a
Mark Haycock, Greg Sahr, Rick Ochs,
better place.
Rick Brainard, Ed Gaines, Joe Stanley, Kirk Kinkead,
His entrepreneurial spirit is best told in the story of
Paul Suarez, Tom Evans, Kyle Virgin, Darrin Wolf, Tim
the GNS 500A systems. It was through this risk taken
Winiesdorffer, Larry Sahr, Robert Tyler, Steve Davis,
that I met Kauffman. Prior to 1990, Kauffman acquired
Brian Jay, Gerry Ilhardt, Tony Molina and Marty Gilby.
a large number of the Global VLF/Omega systems from
The company initially conducted business out of a
a Saudi operator who had switched to INS. For months,
now demolished hangar at Port Columbus. Productive
regular advertisements appeared with a neat row of
years of growth were spent in shared facilities at PDQ
these bulky boxes on the ElectroSonics parts room
(later AirNet) and then Lane Aviation. In 1999, the
shelf, all for sale. Sell they did, and it helped transform
company was acquired by GE Engine Services and
the business. This became segue into a thriving
aligned with Garrett Aviation, which then had direct
corporate jet market, initially international.
access to all ElectroSonics STCs. Within a year,
VLF/Omega did not rely on immature airport
Kauffman left to spend more time with his successful
infrastructure in underdeveloped nations, and as jets
harness horse breeding, racing top-performing
migrated into Africa, brokers lined-up at ElectroSonics to
thoroughbreds.
add the lower-priced overhauled systems.
In recognition of his contribution to avionics,
Kauffman was awarded the Aircraft Electronics
In a visionary act of customer service, Kauffman set
Association's Lifetime Achievement Award in 2001, its
up National Airways Corp. in Johannesburg to cover
first recipient.
local on-site support of the GNS 500A with repair costs
As Murray Smith, owner and editor of ProPilot said
to be reimbursed by ElectroSonics. I happened to be
so well, "I admired Bob for his inventiveness, technical
a specialist on the VLF/Omega in South Africa at this
competence and ability to be a great manager of his
time. It was Kauffman who paid for me, my family and
people."
all our belongings to move to America in 1990, another
He will be greatly missed by Marianne and their
risk taken.
three daughters.
Focusing on innovative avionics solutions, he took
In closing and in memory of Kauffman, I ask all of us
significant additional risks. By the advance purchase of
new equipment, such as FMS, EFIS, TCAS, TAWS and
in the industry to reflect on the virtues he lived by. q

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Avionics News December 2013

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Avionics News December 2013

Point of Communication
AEA Now
The View From Washington
International News and Regulatory Updates
Beltway Briefing
Want to be Found ... and Legal?
Member Profile
Trig Avionics Ltd.
Avionics News Through the Years
EEDirect
A Conversation With...
Member Profile
Avotek Publishes New AET Study Guide
Civil UAV's
Business Basics
AEA Newsmakers at NBAA Convention
What's New
Marketplace Classifieds
Avionics News December 2013 - Intro
Avionics News December 2013 - Cover1
Avionics News December 2013 - Cover2
Avionics News December 2013 - 1
Avionics News December 2013 - 2
Avionics News December 2013 - 3
Avionics News December 2013 - Point of Communication
Avionics News December 2013 - 5
Avionics News December 2013 - AEA Now
Avionics News December 2013 - 7
Avionics News December 2013 - 8
Avionics News December 2013 - 9
Avionics News December 2013 - 10
Avionics News December 2013 - 11
Avionics News December 2013 - 12
Avionics News December 2013 - 13
Avionics News December 2013 - The View From Washington
Avionics News December 2013 - 15
Avionics News December 2013 - International News and Regulatory Updates
Avionics News December 2013 - 17
Avionics News December 2013 - 18
Avionics News December 2013 - Beltway Briefing
Avionics News December 2013 - Want to be Found ... and Legal?
Avionics News December 2013 - 21
Avionics News December 2013 - 22
Avionics News December 2013 - 23
Avionics News December 2013 - Member Profile
Avionics News December 2013 - 25
Avionics News December 2013 - 26
Avionics News December 2013 - 27
Avionics News December 2013 - Trig Avionics Ltd.
Avionics News December 2013 - 29
Avionics News December 2013 - 30
Avionics News December 2013 - 31
Avionics News December 2013 - 32
Avionics News December 2013 - 33
Avionics News December 2013 - Avionics News Through the Years
Avionics News December 2013 - 35
Avionics News December 2013 - EEDirect
Avionics News December 2013 - 37
Avionics News December 2013 - 38
Avionics News December 2013 - 39
Avionics News December 2013 - A Conversation With...
Avionics News December 2013 - 41
Avionics News December 2013 - Member Profile
Avionics News December 2013 - 43
Avionics News December 2013 - 44
Avionics News December 2013 - 45
Avionics News December 2013 - Avotek Publishes New AET Study Guide
Avionics News December 2013 - 47
Avionics News December 2013 - 48
Avionics News December 2013 - 49
Avionics News December 2013 - Civil UAV's
Avionics News December 2013 - 51
Avionics News December 2013 - 52
Avionics News December 2013 - 53
Avionics News December 2013 - Business Basics
Avionics News December 2013 - 55
Avionics News December 2013 - 56
Avionics News December 2013 - 57
Avionics News December 2013 - AEA Newsmakers at NBAA Convention
Avionics News December 2013 - 59
Avionics News December 2013 - 60
Avionics News December 2013 - 61
Avionics News December 2013 - 62
Avionics News December 2013 - 63
Avionics News December 2013 - 64
Avionics News December 2013 - 65
Avionics News December 2013 - What's New
Avionics News December 2013 - 67
Avionics News December 2013 - 68
Avionics News December 2013 - 69
Avionics News December 2013 - Marketplace Classifieds
Avionics News December 2013 - 71
Avionics News December 2013 - 72
Avionics News December 2013 - 73
Avionics News December 2013 - 74
Avionics News December 2013 - Cover3
Avionics News December 2013 - Cover4
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