10.25.19

Daines Honors Montanan of the Week: Bill Stebbins

U.S. SENATE – U.S. Senator Steve Daines recognized pilot Bill Stebbins of Dawson County for his tremendous impact on the state of Montana.

Through his “Montanan of the Week” initiative, Daines each week will highlight a Montanan by submitting a statement of recognition in the official Congressional Record, the document that reflects the official proceedings of Congress.

Daines welcomes anyone to nominate fellow Montanans for Daines’ “Montanan of the Week” program by calling Daines’ office at 202-224-2651 or by filling out the contact form on Daines’ website: HERE.

The following is a statement submitted to the Congressional Record: 

Mr. DAINES. Mr. President, this week I have the honor of recognizing pilot Bill Stebbins of Dawson County for his tremendous impact on Montana and over sixty years of experience as a pilot.  

Bill was honored by his colleagues and the Federal Aviation Administration with the distinguished Wright Brothers Master Pilot Award in August of 2019. This high honor is reserved for few pilots who have had a pilot’s license in good standing for 50 or more years.

Bill has been flying since 1955, putting him at over 60 years of flight with an outstanding 13,000 hours spent in the air.

After earning a mechanical engineering degree, Bill joined the Army where he trained in fixed wing aircraft at Gary Air Force Base in San Marcos, Texas. He later advanced to fixed wing and helicopter training at Fort Rucker in Alabama.

Upon leaving military service, Bill worked for Montana-Dakota Utilities and then Williston Basin Interstate Pipeline, where he flew thousands of miles of pipeline in a variety of fixed wing and rotary aircrafts to help inspect and maintain the pipeline’s protection.

Over the years, Bill has also committed himself to helping those in need, including participating in countless search and rescue operations.

Most notably, in the 1980s Bill airlifted food and supplies into Makoshika State Park to support a youth group stranded at the Lion’s camp by heavy rains and washed out roads.

Bill has spent 50 years based at the Dawson Community Airport, where he has served as the assistant airport manager since 2015. He has had a tremendous impact on the operation of the Dawson County Airport.

It is my honor to recognize Bill for his extraordinary accomplishments. Bill’s experience as a pilot and his selfless service to his community and country is exemplary of the Montana spirit.

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