“"Many years ago, our company founder, Al Conklin, sold a new twin-engine business aircraft to a very successful entrepreneur. He had established a bit of a rapport with the individual and, after the sale, asked him straight out, 'How can you justify the cost of this airplane?' His reply? 'What is the cost of a divorce?'"–David Wyndham, president, Conklin & de Decker”
Up Front: August 2011
Transformation is one of the most extraordinary themes of the human experience. We strive for it, experience it, witness it–sometimes even dread it. But one thing we can be sure of is that constant change and evolution surround us.
No one knows more about the power of transformation than our cover subject Bobbi Brown. As you will read in editor Jeff Burger's excellent interview, Brown has turned a childhood hobby into a multibillion-dollar industry that has affected women all over the world. I was fortunate enough to be able to participate in this interview and must say that sitting down with Brown was one of the highlights of my career.
One reason for that is my own past experience. In college, I was in a serious accident that left disfiguring scars on my legs that made me feel painfully self-conscious. My mom took me to the Bobbi Brown counter at Henri Bendel in New York City, where I learned the transformative power of makeup as a compassionate artist showed me how to cover up the scars, all the while explaining how beauty comes from self-confidence and from within. Though that was many years ago, it is clear that Ms. Brown has not strayed from her original philosophy that makeup should be used to enhance the person you are, not turn you into someone different.
In these pages, you'll also find Matt Thurber's fascinating look into how business aviation facilitates the transportation of hearts and other organs from donor to recipient. This article (see page 28) had a profound impact on me, and I suspect it will affect you, too. It offers a reminder of the frailty of human life–and a look at the miracle workers who help to prolong it and transform other lives. Private aviation may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think about saving lives, but the truth is that it's absolutely essential when someone is waiting for a life-giving transplant.
Matt also writes in this issue about the luminaries who have transformed the business aviation field (see page 46). Although our industry continues to get knocked around in the press, let's all remember that general aviation is a transformative, innovative business that provides millions of jobs worldwide and increases efficiency for companies of all sizes.