Press Release

Mack Rutherford, Youngest Person to Fly Solo Around the World, to Headline EBACE2023 Career Day

Brussels, Belgium, 26 April 2023 – Mack Rutherford, the youngest person to fly solo around the world at age 17, will inspire students and future business aviation professionals during a meet-and-greet and live question-and-answer session on 25 May during the 2023 European Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (EBACE2023) Careers in Business Aviation Day.

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EBACE2023 takes place 23-25 May in Geneva, Switzerland, at the Palexpo center and adjoining Geneva International Airport. It is co-hosted by the European Business Aviation Association (EBAA) and the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA).

Rutherford will share his compelling story of completing a five-month, 52-country, 30,000-mile journey around the globe – starting in Sofia, Bulgaria in March 2022 and ending there last August. He began the trip at age 16, turning 17 during the flight. Flying an ultralight Shark aircraft, Rutherford also became the youngest person to fly solo around the world in a microlight.

Born into a family of aviators, Rutherford earned his microlight pilots license at age 15 and three months, which at the time made him the youngest pilot in the world. In addition to flying around the world, he also has conducted two trans-Atlantic crossings.

“Since I was 3, all I wanted was to be a pilot,” said Rutherford. “With my around-the-world flight, I want to show that young people can pursue their dreams and achieve amazing things. It might not be easy or smooth sailing, but with grit and perseverance, chances of success are on your side.”

Rutherford’s flight followed his sister Zara Rutherford’s 2021 journey, when she became the youngest woman ever to fly solo around the world, completing the circumnavigation at age 19. Zara Rutherford was a keynote speaker at EBACE2022, where she shared her story of her around-the-world solo flight in a Shark ultralight, and the lessons the journey taught her about inspired leadership in any walk of life. Read more about Zara Rutherford.

“Mack’s achievement is an inspiration to young people everywhere who have a desire to learn how to fly, as well as pursue careers in business aviation,” said NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen. “He serves as an example of how becoming a pilot builds not only confidence, but also the kind of strong character that can offer an individual advantages that last a lifetime.”

“Through his remarkable achievement, Mack Rutherford embodies the spirit of determination, perseverance and fearlessness that defines the next generation of business aviation professionals,” said EBAA Chairman Juergen Wiese. “His journey will inspire and empower young people to pursue their passions and make a difference in the world. We are thrilled to have him during the EBACE2023 Careers in Business Aviation Day.”

In addition to hearing from Mack Rutherford, students attending EBACE Career Day will have the opportunity to take part in dynamic breakout sessions with industry professionals to learn about career opportunities, as well as take part in a guided tour to see firsthand the latest aircraft and products the industry has to offer.

EBACE2023 Careers in Business Aviation Day is open to high school and university students and teachers across Europe. Learn more about the EBACE Career Day.

EBACE2023 will showcase the very latest in business aviation throughout the European continent, including dozens of leading-edge business aircraft and a variety of exciting near-future transportation technologies promoting greater environmental sustainability throughout the industry. The event will bring together business leaders, government officials, manufacturers, flight department personnel and others involved in every aspect of business aviation.

Learn more about EBACE2023.

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