Online Staff Report
A delegation representing Rockford composed of U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Illinois, Winnebago County Board Chairman Scott Christiansen (R), City of Rockford Mayor Larry Morrissey (I) and representatives from the Chicago Rockford International Airport (RFD) presented Norwegian Air CEO Bjørn Kjos with the inaugural “Rockford Award” Friday morning, Nov. 21, in Sen. Durbin’s Washington, D.C., office.
A collaborative recognition between Winnebago County, the City of Rockford and the airport, the award is given to an organization or individual for outstanding contribution to the North American aerospace industry. Aerospace and aviation have been the DNA of much of the Rockford region’s success, serving as its foundation for many years.
Norwegian Air utilizes a majority of Boeing aircraft, of which its parts are a significant contributor to the creation and sustainability of jobs in the Rockford region. Each aircraft Norwegian Air purchases support Rockford’s specialized workforce and stimulates Rockford’s regional economy.
“We are excited to present Bjørn Kjos and Norwegian Air with the inaugural Rockford Award,” said Mike Dunn, RFD executive director. “Rockford has benefited greatly from the resurgence of aerospace manufacturing and continues to employ targeted outreach to secure strategic partners that will further the region’s economy, including Norwegian Air.”
Rockford boasts the sixth-highest concentration of aerospace production employment in the nation and is home to a critical mass of tier-one aerospace suppliers including Boeing, Woodward, UTC Aerospace Systems and GE Aviation.
Posted Nov. 21, 2014