On November 1, the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale (the World Air Sports Federation) held its 2022 FAI Awards Ceremony online as a video broadcast. The event recognized those “who have made impressive achievements in air sports or served the progress of aviation through decades of leadership.” People and teams involved in a variety of airports received awards this year. The honorees hailed from many nations and included two American parachutists.
During the ceremony, the FAI presented Marylou Laughlin, D-12418, with its Bronze Medal. The FAI Secretary General may nominate one person a year for this award, which was established in 1962. It honors those who have served the FAI in an administrative role, by sitting on committees or commissions or by organizing FAI sporting events. Laughlin received the prestigious award for “her unsurpassed and selfless contribution to the sport of skydiving and FAI as a leader, competitor, judge and U.S. representative within the international skydiving community.”
The FAI awards its Leonardo da Vinci Parachuting Diploma, established in 1970, to champions of the sport or those who have provided outstanding service at competition events. This year, the FAI chose competitor, coach and champion skydiver Brian Pangburn, D-18122, as the recipient for “pushing forward the sport of canopy formation skydiving.” The Deutsche Aero Club nominated Pangburn in recognition of his passing along his technical skills at world record camps and helping a new generation of canopy formation skydivers to push their own and their teams’ limits.
The FAI awards are an integral part of the organization’s mission and are a highlight of their annual calendar. A full list of the 2022 award winners and a video of the awards ceremony is available at fai.org/news/2022-fai-awards-winners-announced.