AEA Educational Foundation announces scholarship winners

22 individuals receive scholarship for 2023-24 academic year

LEE'S SUMMIT, MISSOURI, June 28, 2023 – The Aircraft Electronics Association's Educational Foundation announced the names of the individuals who were awarded scholarships for the 2023-24 academic year. The individual recipients are as follows:

  • Bill Barnes Memorial Scholarship: Tyler Plane of Somerville, Massachusetts
  • Chuck Freeland Memorial Scholarship: Matthew Ruggiano of Coral Springs, Florida
  • Chuck Peacock Memorial Scholarship: Lei Huot of St. Augustine, Florida
  • David Arver Memorial Scholarship: Cindy Le of Stafford, Texas
  • Dutch and Ginger Arver Memorial Scholarship: Cedar Sobek of Litchfield, Connecticut
  • Field Aviation Scholarship: Alea Mclaren of Vancouver, British Columbia
  • Garmin Scholarship: Kaiden Forest of Brush Prairie, Washington
  • Garmin - Jerry Smith Memorial Scholarship: Isabella Hoerchler of St. Libory, Illinois
  • Gene Baker Memorial Scholarship: Jade Newkirk of Arvada, Colorado
  • Gogo Business Aviation Scholarship: Sarah Michalak of Cary, Illinois
  • Johnny Davis Memorial Scholarship: Joseph Sherwood of Newark Valley, New York
  • Kent McIntyre Memorial Scholarship: Oliver Watson of St. George, Utah
  • Kevin Miesbach Memorial Scholarship: Lauren Peck of South Williamsport, Pennsylvania
  • Lee Tarbox Memorial Scholarship sponsored by Pacific Southwest Instruments: Kyle Stengel of Watertown, South Dakota
  • Marshall Temple Memorial Scholarship: John Kendall of Iron, Minnesota
  • Mid-Continent Instruments and Avionics Scholarship: Micah Chin of Germantown, Maryland
  • Monte Mitchell Scholarship: Daniel Grainger of Bridgewater, Virginia
  • Pat Napolitano Memorial Scholarship: Kayla Hesano of Carbondale, Illinois
  • Sporty's Foundation Scholarship: Isaias Duran Ramirez of Lakeland, Florida
  • Susan T. Friedle Scholarship: Zachary Minchew of Carterville, Illinois
  • The Stone Foundation Scholarship: Joel Mink of Florence, Kentucky
  • Universal Avionics Scholarship: Austin Reenders of Oostburg, Wisconsin

New scholarships awarded this year include the Kevin Miesbach Memorial Scholarship and the Susan T. Friedle Scholarship. Formerly known as the Duncan Aviation Scholarship, the company renamed the scholarship in honor of Miesbach, a longtime employee at Duncan Aviation who received the AEA Member of the Year Award in 2020 and served the aviation industry for 40 years.

Also awarded for the first time is the Susan T. Friedle Scholarship, which is named in honor of the co-founder of CE Avionics. Friedle formed lifelong relationships with customers and vendors and enjoyed being a pilot, earning IFR and multiengine ratings. Friedle's flying experience and avionics knowledge allowed her to fully debrief pilots and troubleshoot discrepancies while running the business side of the operation.

The AEA Educational Foundation annually awards scholarships to students pursuing a career in avionics or aircraft maintenance, as well as students from AEA member companies. The Foundation was created in 1990 to enhance, promote and secure the future of aviation maintenance by furthering the education of students, technicians, members of the AEA and others as determined by aviation industry needs.

Since its inception, the AEA has awarded more than $1.5 million in scholarships. Individuals interested in one or more of these scholarships for the 2024-25 academic year may download an application after Oct. 1, 2023, at


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Founded in 1957, the Aircraft Electronics Association represents nearly 1,300 member companies in more than 40 countries, including approved maintenance organizations specializing in maintenance, repair and installation of aircraft electronics systems in general aviation aircraft. The AEA membership also includes manufacturers of aircraft electronics equipment, instrument repair facilities, instrument manufacturers, airframe manufacturers, test equipment manufacturers, major distributors, engineers and educational institutions.