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Motz to retire as Hagerstown Regional Airport director

July 22, 2010|By HEATHER KEELS
  • Hagerstown Regional Airport Manager Carolyn Motz addresses Hagerstown-Washington County Chamber of Commerce during a breakfast meeting in this 2007 file photo. After about 15 years as director of Hagerstown Regional Airport, Motz has announced she will retire at the end of the year.
File photo,

After about 15 years as director of Hagerstown Regional Airport, Carolyn S. Motz has announced she plans to retire at the end of the year.

"I just felt it was really a good time for me," Motz said Thursday, explaining she has been eligible to retire for about a year and already had put it off longer than she planned.

The Washington County Commissioners agreed Tuesday that staff should prepare to seek a new director and said the vacancy presented an opportunity to consider restructuring the airport.

Commissioners President John F. Barr said some current airport employees were interested in the director position, but said it was possible the county would conduct a national search.

Motz, 60, has worked at the airport since 1991 and has been director since 1995. Before becoming director, she was security coordinator and operations manager.

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Barr said Motz was a "terrific manager" and had been an asset at the airport.

"Carolyn was the guiding anchor in securing $62 million of (Federal Aviation Administration) funds for airport expansions and runway extensions, lighting and control enhancements, putting Hagerstown Airport basically on the map," Barr said.

The runway extension project broke ground in 2004 and wrapped up in 2007.

Motz said she looks back on that project as "the exact thing to do at the exact right time" because of the amount of grant money the county was able to get and the doors it opened for the airport.

Motz helped bring several major employers to the airport and was instrumental in bringing passenger service back to the airport, Barr said.

Allegiant Air began its twice-weekly flights to Orlando from Hagerstown Regional Airport in 2008, but discontinued the service last week. Cape Air's federally subsidized commuter service from Hagerstown to Baltimore, introduced in 2009, still is operating.

Sierra Nevada Corp.'s aircraft maintenance and modification facility at the airport was ranked in the county's top 15 largest employers in the Hagerstown-Washington County Economic Development Commission's 2010 Business and Industry Directory, and the Pittsburgh Institute of Aeronautics has announced plans to open a school at the airport to train technicians for the growing number of jobs at Sierra Nevada and other airport-based companies.

Motz she is proud of the airport's advancement as an economic engine.

"I'm extremely pleased with the businesses that have decided to locate there since I've been there," she said. "It's really exciting for the region."

Motz said she was looking forward to traveling and having more time to devote to her family in her retirement.

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