WRIGHT BROTHERS                                         FAA/FS-I-8700-2 (Rev. 1)



February 19, 2008



Flight Standards Service

General Aviation and Commercial Division


The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) recognizes the efforts of pilots who have followed and continue to follow the precaution and awareness of safe flight operations. Most of all, the FAA recognizes pilots who have contributed and maintained safe flight operations for 50 or more consecutive years of piloting aircraft.

Therefore, the FAA has a program to recognize those pilots who have 50 or more consecutive years of safe flight operations: the Wright Brothers Master Pilot Award Program. Originally issued on August 11, 2003, we have revised this information guide by updating the award’s eligibility requirements, as indicated within.

This information guide:

·        Describes the award

·        Describes the eligibility requirements to qualify for the award

·        Explains how to submit an application

·        Explains the selection process of candidates for the award

John S. Duncan

Manager, General Aviation

and Commercial Division


1.   PURPOSE. The Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) Wright Brothers Master Pilot Award Program (MPA) recognizes pilots who have conducted 50 or more consecutive years of safe flight operations. This information guide:

·        Describes the award,

·        Describes the eligibility requirements,

·        Explains how to submit an application, and

·        Explains the selection process of candidates for the award.

2.   BACKGROUND. Similar pilot awards (such as the Golden Eagle Award) have been presented by various FAA Flight Standards District Offices (FSDO). These awards have been issued to recognize local pilots who have exhibited professionalism, skill, and aviation expertise for at least 50 years as active pilots. The Wright Brothers MPA consolidates these local awards into one national program.

3.   DESCRIPTION. The award will be in the form of an FAA award certificate and lapel pin. A smaller version of the pin will be awarded to the spouse, if appropriate. In addition, a Role of Honor with the recipient’s name, city, and state will be published at http://FAASafety.gov.


A.     To be eligible for the Wright Brothers MPA, candidates must:

1)      Have 50 years of U.S. piloting experience. The effective start date for the award is the date of the applicant’s first solo flight or military equivalent. A current flight review or medical certificate is not required at the time of nomination.
2)      Have held a U.S. Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) or FAA pilot certificate with:

·        50 or more years of civil flying experience, or

·        50 or more years of civil and military flying experience, of which up to 20 years may be U.S. military experience.

3)      Have been a U.S. citizen, or permanent resident, during the 50 years of US piloting experience; however, consideration for exceptions may be given on a case-by-case basis.

B.     Revocation of any airman certificate will disqualify a nominee for this award.

C.     Prior accident history will be reviewed and considered on a case-by-case basis.

D.    Prior enforcement actions (excluding revocation) are not necessarily disqualifying, but will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.

E.     The award may be presented to a nominee up to 2 years posthumously if the nominee has acquired 50 years of U.S. piloting experience prior to passing away.

5.   SUBMISSION. To be eligible for the Wright Brothers MPA, the applicant, or anyone on behalf of the applicant, must submit the following information to their local FSDO or FAA Safety Team (FAASTeam) program manager (FPM)

·        Three letters of recommendation from holders of FAA pilot certificates who can attest to the applicant’s 50 years or more of U.S. piloting experience.

·        Photocopies or proper documentation describing the kind of certificate(s) held by the applicant, including, if available, the original issue date(s) of the certificate(s).

·        A detailed description, resume, or summary of the applicant’s flying history.

·        A completed Wright Brothers MPA Application Form. (The Wright Brothers MPA Application Form can be obtained from http://FAASafety.gov, or as attached to this document as Appendix A.)

6.   PROCESS. An FPM will notify the FSDO manager(s) that a Wright Brothers MPA application has been received, and will inquire about the applicant’s eligibility. Applications received by an FSDO will be forwarded to the appropriate FPM. The regional FAASTeam Manager will be the final authority for approval of the applicant. Additional information, or an interview by the FPM, may be necessary to verify a nominee’s qualifications. The regional FAASTeam will order the nationally approved MPA standard certificate, plaque, and pin from the National Resource Center (NRC), or as directed by the NRC. When possible, the award should be presented at an FAA or industry event.



1) Nominee’s Full Name


2) Address


3) Telephone No.(s)


4) Grade of pilot certificate and ratings


5) Pilot certificate No.(s)                                                                                                              

6) Date of issue of current pilot certificate                                                                              

7) Date of original solo/student pilot certificate (if civil trained)


8) Date of original solo or designation as a military pilot


9) Aircraft soloed in                                                                                                                      

10) Place (and training organization if applicable) where initially soloed:


11) Beginning and ending dates (month and year) for the 50-year pilot experience period to be considered for this award:


12) U.S. citizen for the entire 50-year period? Yes ____ No ____ If no, explain on back.

13) Has the nominee ever been assessed a civil penalty for a pilot or flight violation of 14 CFR? Yes _______ No _______ If yes, provide details on the back of this application.

14) Has the nominee ever had an aviation accident? Yes _______ No_______ If yes, provide details on the back of this application.

15) To help establish a period of 50 years of continuous pilot experience, please attach an aviation resume or a summary of the nominee’s flying activity covering the award period.

16) Three letters of recommendation from certificated pilots. Attached? Yes ____ No _____

Please submit the nomination package to your local FAA Flight Standards District Office or

FAA Safety Team program manager