Gov. Kelly travels south to honor 2022 Exporter of the Year

Gov. Kelly visits Textron Aviation on April 11, 2023, to visit the Exporter of the Year for 2022.
Gov. Kelly visits Textron Aviation on April 11, 2023, to visit the Exporter of the Year for 2022.(Office of the Kansas Governor)
Published: Apr. 12, 2023 at 1:14 PM CDT
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WICHITA, Kan. (WIBW) - Governor Kelly traveled south to honor the 2022 Exporter of the Year - Textron Aviation.

Kansas Governor Luara Kelly says that on Tuesday, April 11, she visited Textron Aviation in Wichita to honor the company as it was named the 2022 Governor’s Exporter of the Year. Textron Aviation manufactures well-known brand aircraft like Beechcraft and Cessna and exports its products and services to more than 170 countries.

“As Exporter of the Year, Textron Aviation is showing the world what separates Kansas from the pack – and why more and more businesses are finding a home here in Kansas,” Gov. Kelly said. “Its impressive global reach was a major contributor to our state’s record-setting $14 billion in exports last year. Congratulations to Textron Aviation on this outstanding recognition.”

Kelly noted that Exporter of the Year is the top export business award in the Sunflower State and is presented annually. It was given to Textron in October during the Kansas Department of Commerce’s To The Stars: Kansas Business Awards banquet in Topeka.

“The international market is important to Textron Aviation and the state of Kansas. It brings outside revenue into our state and highlights our products, services, and capabilities on the international stage,” Textron Aviation President and CEO Ron Draper said. “We are honored to receive the 2022 Governor’s Exporter of the Year Award and look forward to working with other Kansas companies seeking similar success.”

The Governor indicated that Textron’s export business supports its global workforce. In addition, the about 10,500-strong team in Kansa supports thousands of Main Street jobs in the Wichita market. Studies show that for each aviation job, the local community benefits seven times over.

“Textron Aviation’s international success serves as yet another reminder that Wichita is the Air Capital of the World,” Lieutenant Governor and Secretary of Commerce David Toland said. “Textron Aviation deserves this prestigious honor for its substantial contributions to Kansas’ record-breaking economy – and exemplifies our state’s solid reputation as a place where innovation thrives.”

Kelly said Textron was one of three finalists for the award, joined by DataLocker and Industrial Accessories Company - both located in Johnson Co. The Exporter of the Year award process for 2023 is currently underway. To nominate a business click HERE.