Jack J. Pelton

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Jack J. Pelton
Jack J. Pelton EAA CEO at AERO Friedrichshafen 2018.jpg
Born John Pelton
Nationality American
Occupation Aviation Chief Executive Officer
Spouse(s) Rose Pelton

Jack J. Pelton is the Chairman of the Board and CEO of the Experimental Aircraft Association and the former CEO of Cessna Aircraft Company. Before becoming the CEO of Cessna, Pelton was Cessna's Senior Vice President of Engineering. Before joining Textron in 2000, Pelton was Senior Vice President of Engineering and Programs at Fairchild Dornier. Prior to this, he worked at McDonnell Douglas for over two decades.[1]

Soon after Jack Pelton was named CEO of Cessna, it was revealed in 2004 that his resume included references to education received from Hamilton University, which 60 Minutes news program discovered was a diploma mill. Neither his undergraduate or graduate degrees in Aerospace Engineering were earned from an accredited school.[2] Temporarily embarrassed by the revelation, Textron released a statement proclaiming that Pelton was chosen for his 30-year-long career in leadership and not for his faked diplomas.

Pelton testified in favor of a property tax increase to build an aviation training facility that would benefit Cessna at an August 9, 2006 Sedgwick County Commission meeting.[3] At a December 12, 2006 meeting of the Wichita City Council, Cessna applied for industrial revenue bonds that include an exemption from paying property tax on property purchased with IRB proceeds.[4]

In March 2008, Kansas Governor Kathleen Sebelius appointed Pelton to lead the Kansas Energy and Environmental Policy Advisory Group.[5]

Textron announced that Jack Pelton retired from Cessna on May 2, 2011, "effective immediately". The aviation news media noted Pelton's hasty retirement. AvWeb Editor-In-Chief Russ Niles questioned "who retires 'effective immediately' at age 52 on a Monday morning when the boss is in town?" and speculated that it was related to a possible demand from Textron for cuts to Cessna after a first-quarter 2011 loss of US $38 million.[6][7][8]

On October 22, 2012, Pelton became Chairman of the Board of the Experimental Aircraft Association.[9]

By the end of 2012 Pelton was also managing director of Aviation Alliance, a partnership of ten individuals and companies that intends to sell remanufacturered turboprop-powered Cessna 421s under the name Aviation Alliance Excalibur.[10]

On November 9, 2015, Pelton was named CEO of the Experimental Aircraft Association. The CEO position at EAA had been vacant since November 2012.[11]


  1. ^ "About Textron: Leadership: Biography". Textron. 2008-01-24. Retrieved 2008-01-24. 
  2. ^ Diplomas for Sale 60 Minutes
  3. ^ "Sedgwick County Commission minutes, August 9, 2006" (PDF). 
  4. ^ "Wichita City Council minutes, December 12, 2006" (PDF). 
  5. ^ "Sebelius prevents and reduces pollutants with veto, executive order". Kansas Governor's Office Press Release. 2008-03-21. Archived from the original on 2008-06-04. Retrieved 2008-06-27. 
  6. ^ Textron Announces Jack Pelton Retires from Cessna
  7. ^ Grady, Mary (May 2011). "Pelton Retires From Cessna". AvWeb. Retrieved 3 May 2011. 
  8. ^ Niles, Russ (May 2011). "Pelton's Long-Term View Cut Short". AvWeb. Retrieved 9 May 2011. 
  9. ^ AVweb Staff (22 October 2012). "Hightower Out at EAA". AVweb. Retrieved 22 October 2012. 
  10. ^ Niles, Russ (23 January 2013). "Pelton Leads 'Remanufacturing' Business". AVweb. Retrieved 24 January 2013. 
  11. ^ EAA Staff (9 November 2015). "EAA Board of Directors Names Chairman Jack Pelton as CEO of Organization". EAA. Retrieved 16 November 2015.