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Tom Missel
Director of Media Relations and Marketing
P.O. Box 2509
Office of Communications 
St. Bonaventure University 
St. Bonaventure, NY 14778

Phone: (716) 375-2303
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Steve Mest
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More News

Longtime aerospace executive to talk about century of aviation in WNY

Mar 18, 2014 |

A century of aviation and aerospace in Western New York will be the topic of a March 28 talk at St. Bonaventure University’s Walsh Science Center.

Hugh Neeson, a longtime executive in the aerospace industry, will present “Aviation Hugh Neesonand Aerospace in Western New York: 1914-2014” at 4:30 p.m. in the Walsh Auditorium. The talk is free and open to the public.

Neeson is on the board of directors and executive committee of the Niagara Aerospace Museum, where he also serves as the director of development.

Now retired, Neeson spent 44 years in the aerospace industry with Bell Aircraft, Chrysler Missile Systems, Bell Aerospace-Textron and Lockheed Martin.

In the latter part of his career, he served as vice president of electronic and inertial systems with Bell Aerospace-Textron and culminated his career as director of Niagara Operations with Lockheed Martin. 

“Mr. Neeson’s talk will acquaint students and the public with the rich history of the aeronautical industry in Western New York going back to the earliest days of manned flight and continuing into the space age,” said Dr. Jerry Kiefer, chair of the Physics Department.

“Students will learn that the aerospace industry continues to provide opportunities to students in the STEM fields for scientific and technical careers in the region today.” 

Neeson has a bachelor’s degree in physics from Canisius College and an MBA from the University at Buffalo. He is the brother of Dr. John Neeson, professor emeritus in the Department of Physics.

Buffalo once had more than 20 aircraft companies in the early part of the 20th century before the consolidation of 12 companies created Curtiss-Wright Corp., the largest aircraft manufacturer in the United States by the end of World War II.

During the war, Curtiss-Wright and Bell Aircraft Corp. produced approximately 30,000 airplanes for the U.S. Armed Forces, according to Hugh Neeson.


About the University: The nation’s first Franciscan university, St. Bonaventure University cultivates graduates who are confident and creative communicators, collaborative leaders and team members, and innovative problem solvers who are respectful of themselves, others, and the diverse world around them. We are establishing pathways to internships, graduate schools and careers in the context of our renowned liberal arts tradition. Our students are becoming extraordinary.     

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