11th annual al conklin & bill de decker scholarship announced
December 10, 2018
Conklin & de Decker, a JSSI company, in association with the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA), has announced the recipient of the annual Al Conklin and Bill de Decker Business Aviation Management Scholarship is Najla C. E. Dorsey of Columbus, Ohio.
Each year, NBAA Charities and Conklin & de Decker award $5,000 to a carefully selected undergraduate student who is enrolled in an aviation management program at a University Aviation Association member school. Dorsey is a senior at The Ohio State University (OSU) in Columbus, Ohio, where she is majoring in air transportation with a professional pilot specialization.
Dorsey expects to graduate in 2019 but her dream of becoming a pilot began several years ago when she was a ramp agent for an airline in Philadelphia. Her path to make that dream a reality started when she enrolled as a professional pilot major at OSU and researched the many career options that aviation has to offer, including business aviation. Dorsey has served as an aerospace education officer for the Civil Air Patrol since 2011. She is the current president of the Organization of Black Aerospace Professionals, OSU Chapter, and a member of the College of Arts & Sciences Dean’s Student Advisory Board. She has also volunteered for the Tuskegee Airmen, Inc. Ohio Memorial Chapter, Women in Aviation, and the Buckeye Tigers A.C.E. Academy.
“It is always an honor to award our annual scholarship and we are especially excited to recognize Najla in 2018. She is very deserving and I am confident she will represent our industry well,” stated Bill de Decker, co-founder of Conklin & de Decker. “On behalf of the Conklin & de Decker and JSSI family, we congratulate Najla and wish her all the best as she pursues her career in the business aviation industry.”
“I am exceptionally thankful for the Conklin & de Decker Scholarship. I look forward to using it toward my commercial rating and being one step closer to embarking on my career as a business aviation pilot,” added Dorsey.
The scholarship was initially created to honor the memory of Al Conklin, a U.S. Air Force veteran and business aviation leader for more than 60 years. Conklin’s career took him to business aviation where he sold aircraft for several companies and, in partnership with Bill de Decker, created the first Aircraft Cost Evaluator program and founded Conklin & de Decker. In 2015, the annual scholarship was renamed to also recognize Bill de Decker and his contributions to business aviation, for which he was honored with NBAA’s John P. “Jack” Doswell Award in 2014.