Vintage is proud to honor Phil Coulson of Lawton, Michigan, as our 2016 inductee into the Sport Aviation Hall of Fame. Phil will be inducted at a dinner ceremony on November 10, 2016, in the Founders’ Wing of the EAA AirVenture Museum.
Phil has been immersed in aviation for all of his adult life. He enlisted in the U.S. Air Force during the Korean War and, on his return to Michigan, learned to fly in a prewar Piper J-5 Cruiser. Phil had discovered a passion for sport aviation, and began attending the early EAA conventions at Rockford starting in 1962.
As a long-time director of the Vintage Aircraft Association, Phil chaired the annual Vintage Parade of Flight during AirVenture Oshkosh and served as a long-term senior judge in the Antique category. Phil chose to take emeritus status with the VAA board in the fall of 2015 after nearly 30 years of active, involved, and dedicated service to both EAA and the VAA.
Phil began volunteering with EAA at Rockford, and then at Oshkosh, where he became an advisor in the Antique/Classic Division in 1985, followed by election to its board in 1987. During this period, Phil acquired a Waco UPF-7 open-cockpit biplane. The experience of owning the Waco, and the camaraderie with other owners that followed, led Phil and his friends to organize the American Waco Club (AWC) in 1993. Phil was named the founding president, a leadership position he continued until his retirement in 2013.
Phil also edited and published the Waco World News, the publication of the AWC. In addition to the UPF-7, Phil and his wife, Ruthie, have owned a G35 Bonanza, a Cessna 195, a Waco RNF, a Waco 10, and a rare Waco UBA.