Paula Derks announces retirement transition; search for next AEA president and CEO underway

During her annual State of the Association address at the 61st annual AEA International Convention & Trade Show in Las Vegas on March 26, Paula Derks announced her intention to retire as president of the Aircraft Electronics Association effective May 2019.

Soon after Derks’ retirement announcement, AEA Chairman David Loso, along with AEA Vice Chairman Garry Joyce, formed a search committee to consider qualified candidates. The search committee, which includes former chairmen of the AEA board, has developed a job description for the position of president and chief executive officer.

The process is now actively underway to identify candidates to lead the association, and the search committee expects to recommend a slate of finalists to the board of directors during the fall board meeting in Kansas City, Missouri, which is set for early October 2018.

After the board exercises its due diligence and interviews the finalists, a decision will be made to appoint the association’s next president and CEO by the end of this calendar year. The successful candidate will formally be introduced to the membership during next year’s convention in Palm Springs, California, which will take place March 25-28, 2019.

Individuals may express their interest in being considered for this senior leadership position at This online form will help gather initial contact information from qualified candidates and give the search committee the resources to follow up as deemed appropriate.

“Without a doubt, the AEA has never been stronger than it is today, both financially and via a broad range of benefits and services provided to our member companies,” Loso said. “Our association’s clearly-defined vision and mission will continue to serve a worldwide, self-sustaining organization committed to enhancing the profitability of our members, and I look forward to working collaboratively with the search committee and board members to find the right person to lead a talented staff already in place at our international headquarters in Lee’s Summit, Missouri.”