Seaplane fans represent one of aviation’s most enthusiastic user groups and few brands can claim more reliable loyalty than 600 owners give SeaRey. The central Florida producer got numerous owners to come help them move when they relocated into expansive new quarters in Tavares, Florida, which has claimed the title of “America’s Seaplane City.” Even the building was financed by SeaRey owners for the benefit of the manufacturer. With that kind of backing a new leader of the enterprise begins on solid footing. *** From the beginning, Progressive Aerodyne (PA), developer and builder of the SeaRey line has been directed by the Richter family. New CEO and Chairman, Adam Yang, assumed control of PA on May 9th, 2011. Here’s what he had to say: “Kerry Richter, the founder of Progressive Aerodyne, remains as President and principal designer and will be focusing his energy on R&D, company strategy and customer relationships. Joining the team as General Manager is Joe Friend. A pilot, owner, and builder of a SeaRey with more than forty years of experience in engineering design, manufacturing and project management, Joe has worked with Bell Labs and IBM and is now is responsible for operations at PA as well as leading the effort towards the light sport aircraft certification of the SeaRey.” *** Founding partner Kerry has been supported by other longtime associates and Adam updated us about them as well. “Wayne Richter (Kerry’s father) is retiring,” Adam noted. “Paige Lynette is pursuing a fun career of flying a SeaRey in the South Pacific. We are very grateful for the efforts that Wayne and Paige have made over the years towards the growth of the company and wish them the very best.” *** Adam Yang brings strength to the team he now leads. He served as general manager for Rockwell Automation and has extensive manufacturing experience in precision machining, product development, quality control systems, and manufacturing management. Adam holds an MS degree in engineering from Rutgers University as well as a private pilot license with land and sea ratings. *** “I am joining the company at this pivotal moment of transformation, from a kit airplane manufacturer to a factory-built airplane company,” observed Yang. “I realize that we need to increase our efforts in several areas to achieve this goal. We are working to refine our quality systems, increase production capacity, expand R&D, increase our market presence, build an effective product distribution system and broaden our customer service.”
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