Aviators selected for VTR board

Published 3:19 am Friday, December 24, 2010

Two local aviators have emerged as top choices of Warren County supervisors to fill positions on the Vicksburg Tallulah Regional Airport advisory board.

Gary Estes, the owner of Estes Aviation, a buyer and seller of used aircraft, is the county board pick to succeed Dan Fordice as the county’s exclusive appointee to the five-member management panel. Fordice will leave the board effective Dec. 31.

Supervisors said Estes was the top choice among three people nominated to fill Fordice’s seat.

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A brief bio shared among supervisors during the Thursday meeting mentioned him as a lessee of hangar space owned by Fordice at the Mound facility.

J. Michael Nassour, was a consensus choice of board members to fill the vacant seat that is alternately appointed by Warren County and Madison Parish every three years. Nassour, owner of Nassour Computers Inc. and a certified flight instructor, operates a flight school and contracts for small craft aerial work, according to information provided by supervisors. He has maintained office space at VTR since 2006. Terms on both seats run through 2013.

A third resume was sent by Warren County resident Richard Dunaway, whose bio sent to supervisors listed nine years in the Air Force and 27 years at Entergy and Grand Gulf Nuclear Station.

Vicksburg, Warren County, Madison Parish and Tallulah own the Mound airport jointly, with each appointing a representative to the advisory board to oversee its daily operations.

Replacements require majority votes of the four owners’ boards. Representatives include Fordice, Benny Terrell (Vicksburg), Craig Cox (Madison Parish), T.J. Williams (Tallulah) and Anthony Bridgewater (alternating).

In the recent past, the owners had funded daily operations at a $30,000 clip, which remained the same this year with an additional $96,000 to match grants for capital projects.

Projections of total income for VTR were downgraded by 30 percent to $360,695.84 in the 2010-11 operating budget.