Tuesday Luncheon Speaker - Shelly Simi, President and CEO National Association of State Aviation Officials (NASAO)

Shelly Simi

President and CEO


With over 25 years of extensive experience as an aviation and aerospace executive, Shelly Simi has been instrumental in promoting and enhancing major corporate and association initiatives throughout the industry. Working with key stakeholders including government representatives, association leaders, corporate executives, and industry partners, she has marketed emerging technologies that are impacting the way we think about transportation and mobility through visibility/brand awareness, increasing customer investment/company growth, and enhancing membership participation.

Before joining NASAO, Simi served as Director, Corporate Communications & Public Affairs for Aurora Flight Sciences Corp., a Boeing Company. Simi leads the industry outreach strategies, working with corporate partners and stakeholders, to create integrated communications programs and thought-leadership messaging to showcase the autonomy technology that is revolutionizing the transportation arena.

Prior to Aurora, Simi led the industry relations and public affairs in Corporate Communications, for Jeppesen, A Boeing Company, the world’s leading aviation charting and training company and for Boeing Air Traffic Management. Simi was responsible for outreach efforts with industry stakeholders and direct customer and media relations to elevate Boeing’s Digital Aviation capabilities in modernizing the nation’s air traffic management system. Prior to Jeppesen, Simi was PR counsel and media relations director at Adam Aircraft, manufacturer of the all composite centerline twin piston A500 and the A700 AdamJet, a new clean-sheet design VLJ (very light jet). Before joining Adam Aircraft, she ran her own company, Simi Communications & Event Planning located outside Annapolis, Maryland, which focused on media relations, communications and meeting planning activities for aviation and transportation.

For over 15 years, Simi was part of the General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) in Washington, DC. As Vice President of Communications, Simi was the industry spokesperson and educator at GAMA, working daily with both the news media and the aviation community in promoting general aviation and the manufacturers of general aviation aircraft, engines, avionics and related equipment. Before joining GAMA, Simi worked as a Flight Operations/Fuel Coordinator for Federal Express (FedEx) Corporation in Memphis, Tennessee.

Simi is a Founding Board Member of Women in Aviation, International. She has served as a contributing editor for Aviation for Women magazine and serves on the WAI Conference Planning Committee and Pioneer Hall of Fame Selection Committee. She was also President of the Aero Club of Washington and is a past Board of Trustee member of the University Aviation Association. Simi is a co-founder and past chairman of the National Coalition for Aviation (and Space) Education and a founding member of the Aviation Communications Coalition of Washington.

Simi was inducted as a pioneer into the Women in Aviation Pioneer Hall of Fame in 2015. She was presented the 1999 University Aviation Association Estridge Award in recognition of her dedicated service to aerospace education. In 1997, the National Coalition for Aviation Education honored Simi with the Mervin K. Strickler, Jr. Aviation Education Leadership Award for her commitment and outstanding contributions to aviation education.

She attended George Washington University's Public Relations Certificate Program in Washington, DC and holds a Bachelor of Commercial Aviation degree with a minor in Flight Operations from Delta State University in Cleveland, Mississippi.