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News Room

Utah Flies High With Aerospace Education and Leading Aerospace Companies

September 04 2014 - 9:24 am

News Release
For Immediate Release

September 9, 2014

Michael Sullivan, GOED Communications Director

Utah Flies High With Aerospace Education and Leading Aerospace Companies
National Aerospace Week recognizes the nation’s and states’ achievements in aviation

Salt Lake City, UTAH — Standing at the front of a strong heritage in aviation, Utah continues to thrive in the aerospace industry as one of the top states in aerospace employment. To honor Utah’s accomplishments in aviation and in recognition of the impact of the industry in America, Utah will join with the country in celebration of National Aerospace Week, held Sept. 14-20.

“Utah has a rich heritage in aerospace and defense, and that heritage continues today and will carry into the future,” said Governor Gary R. Herbert. “We benefit from a collaborative relationship between our aerospace and composite companies, local communities, defense contractors, academia and state government leaders. This relationship creates an environment in which our aerospace and defense industries can grow and be successful.”

As part of Utah’s observance of National Aerospace Week, Governor Gary R. Herbert will address Utah Aerospace and Defense executives at an Air Force Association, Industrial Associates luncheon on Sept. 15 in Layton where he will present the state’s economic development initiatives with an emphasis on aerospace and defense.

Utah is one of the top states in the nation in aerospace employment, currently with about 105 companies in the industry, employing about 20,000 people. Utah’s Aerospace and Defense economic cluster represents about 4.5 percent of all state wages, with an average wage in the industry at roughly 90 percent higher than Utah’s average annual wage.

“With companies such as Boeing, ATK and Northrup Grumman, and with major industry supply chain players like Exelis, Janicki and Rockwell Collins, along with installations such as Hill Air Force Base, Utah has the capabilities and facilities to support the most forward aerospace technologies,” said Marshall Wright, director of business development at the Governor’s Office of Economic Development.

Utah’s heritage in aerospace is strongly supplemented at the college and university level where Utah’s higher education programs are educating thousands of students annually in aerospace programs, guiding students to become the future of the aerospace workforce. These colleges and universities help hundreds of students graduate annually with the skill set to keep Utah at the top in the nation’s aerospace industry.

In 2010, the Aerospace Industries Association and both houses of the U.S. Congress sought to recognize the contribution of the aerospace and defense industry to the American economy and national security by establishing National Aerospace Week annually as the third week of September. For more information on National Aerospace Week, visit


Employees at ATK work on an F-35 wing skin. ATK is one company of about 105 aerospace industry companies currently in Utah.
These companies employ a workforce of about 20,000 people, making Utah one of the top states in aerospace and defense employment. 

About the Utah Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED)

The Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED) charter is based on Governor Gary Herbert’s commitment to economic development statewide. Utah’s economic development vision is that Utah will lead the nation as the best performing economy and be recognized as a premier global business destination. The mandate for this office is to provide rich business resources for the creation, growth and recruitment of companies to Utah and to increase tourism and film production in the state. GOED accomplishes this mission through the administration of programs that are based around targeted industries or “economic clusters” that demonstrate the best potential for development. GOED utilizes state resources and private sector contracts to fulfill its mission.  For more information please contact:  Michael Sullivan, 801-538-8811 or