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Airport manager inducted in Aviation Hall of Fame

For nearly half a century, Bill Amorde has managed and oversaw the growth and change of Superior's municipal airport.

Superior Mayor Jim Paine recognized the longtime airport manager Tuesday for yet another aviation accomplishment — induction in the Wisconsin Aviation Hall of Fame on Oct. 21.

Paine gave a commendation to Amorde, who founded Twin Ports Flying Service in Superior, a family business, in September 1966. Three years later, Amorde was contracted to manage the airport as well.

According to the Hall of Fame, Amorde, a native of Superior raised on a dairy farm, got his start in aviation Aug. 5, 1962, when he took a $10 introductory flight in a Cessna 140. Six months later, he earned his private pilot certificate, and he went on to earn his flight instructor certificate Dec. 15, 1965. Two days later, he gave his first lesson.

Since then, he's trained more than 3,000 pilots, Paine said.

Today, Amorde holds the certificates and ratings for airline transport pilot, commercial, rotorcraft-helicopter and gyroplane, glider, lighter-than-air free balloon and instrument rating. He holds a gold seal flight instructor certificate. He also holds a mechanic certificate with airframe and powerplant ratings as well as inspection authorization. He became a designated pilot examiner for the FAA in July 1976. He has given nearly 4,000 flight tests.

"Amorde is a tireless aviation community builder, airport promoter, and aviation advocate," according to the Hall of Fame, which noted Amorde supports aviation education through tours of the airport; classroom instruction for Air Force and Marine ROTC and programs at the University of Wisconsin-Superior and the University of Minnesota Duluth; and has offered ground and flight training for Lake Superior College.

"The City of Superior is very lucky to have you managing our beautiful airport," Paine said. "So thank you Bill for all your hard work and commitment for all these years."

Paine said in learning about Amorde's achievement, the one thing he kept hearing was this is a big deal.

"I would give an acceptance speech, but I didn't know this was going to happen," Amorde told the Council Tuesday night. "So all I can say is 'thank you very much.'"