The National Aviation Hall of Fame has named Ron Kaplan interim executive director effective Jan. 1, 2005. Lt. Col. Mike Jackson (USAF, ret.), former executive director, retired on Dec. 31, 2004, after serving over 12 years in that role.
Kaplan will serve as executive director while the NAHF board of trustees undertakes a search for a permanent successor to be announced later this year. He’s a candidate for the permanent position.
The NAHF was founded in 1962, and chartered by the U.S. Congress in 1964, as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to honoring America’s outstanding air and space pioneers. Its 14,000-square-foot Learning and Research Center is located adjacent to the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force, in Dayton, Ohio.
Since joining the organization as its development director in 1998, Kaplan served as deputy director and director of marketing, his current position.
Throughout his seven years of NAHF service, he has played an integral role in the inception of the hall’s merchandising, licensing and public relations programs; enhancements to its learning center and annual enshrinement ceremony; development of education initiatives and strategic partnerships; and directing ongoing sponsorship and fundraising efforts.
He will continue his marketing duties throughout his interim tenure as executive director, including the planning and production of the 43rd Annual Enshrinement Ceremony events to be held in Dayton this July 15-16.
Kaplan, 46, is a native of Columbus, Ohio. He attended Ohio University before spending 18 years in the graphic arts industry. Formerly an aviation journalist, contributing editor to Flight Journal Magazine and artist member of the American Society of Aviation Artists, he’s also an award-winning photographer and member of the USAF Art Program.
The father of four boys, Kaplan resides in Kettering, Ohio, with his wife, Jennifer, and family.