Saturday, July 26, 2008

2008 Bill Barber Award Winner: Bud Granley

World Airshow News is very pleased to announce that Bud Granley has been selected as the 2008 recipient of the Bill Barber Award for Showmanship.

Bud has been involved in one way or another with airplanes since he was only nine years old. He was outside playing with his brothers one day when they noticed a Tiger Moth biplane landing on their uncle’s farm. They were soon surprised to find out it was their father who was flying that plane. He had secretly earned his pilots license and would go on to make a career of flying. All three boys would also become flyers.

Bud joined the Royal Canadian Air Force in 1956 after earning his wings with a Royal Canadian Air Cadet scholarship. He flew the F-86 Sabre and later was a T-6 Harvard instructor in Red Deer, Alberta. There he began his airshow career as the solo demonstration pilot in the Harvard.

Today, Bud lives in Bellevue, Washington after retiring in 1997 from a successful career as a Captain for United Airlines. He has six children and three of them served in the Canadian Armed Forces. Two flew with the Snowbird aerobatic team, and are now airline pilots – Ross with United, and Chris with Air Canada. Deb flies the 737 for Alaska Airlines. Bob chose the Navy, and is now a Captain with Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines. He also flies the planes to airshows when not sailing.

Bud is best known for flying the Harvard, Fouga Magister, and Yak-55 in airshows, but he also flies warbirds like the P-51, Skyraider, or Wildcat. He flies a formation act with his son Ross, with Bud in the Yak-55 and Ross in his Yak-18T. Bud is also a regular at the Reno Air Races, flying a T-6 named Lickety Split.

Bud was awarded the ICAS Art Scholl Showmanship Award in 2005.

The Bill Barber Award for Showmanship was founded by World Airshow News in 1986 to recognize those who do more than their share to promote the airshow industry. An election committee made up of past award recipients reviews nominations made by committee members and the industry at large. Nominees are not advised that they were nominated, nor is anyone told who nominated whom.

The award, named in honor of legendary performer Bill Barber, will be presented to Bud at a location and time to be announced.

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