George H. Baker
test pilot school, after which he flew everything from the
Lockheed P- 80 Shooting Star to the Northrop N9M flying
wing. He most famously worked with Chuck Yeager on
the X- 1 project, serving as backup pilot, and was flying
chase when Yeager broke the sound barrier.
Hoover went to work for North American Aviation in
1950, where he tested and demonstrated the company’s
civil and military aircraft. When the company merged
with Rockwell International in 1968, he began
demonstrating its Shrike Commander twin-engine
business aircraft, and production demands increased
from one a month to eight.
In 1964, Hoover served as the first official starter
at the Reno National Championship Air Races, a role
that he continued for three decades. He also served
two terms as president of the Society of Experimental
Test Pilots and is the namesake for the Hoover Bill that
passed in 2000, which gives an FAA certificate holder
the right to immediately appeal an emergency certificate
revocation to the National Transportation Safety Board.
Most recently, in 2003, Hoover co-founded Jet Fleet
International, which sells products and services to jet
owners at discounted prices.
George H. Baker
– Warbirds of America Inductee
George H. Baker was born in Hawthorne, New Jersey,
in 1930. He first soloed during his junior year of high
school. In the past 63 years he has flown more than
100 different types of aircraft and earned an airline
transport pilot certificate, accumulating more than
20,000 hours of flying.
Since 1977, Baker has been operating a warbird
restoration facility in Florida. For the Valiant Air
Command he’s traveled to Japan to rescue nine Fujis, the
United Kingdom for two T-33s, the Dominican Republic
for three T-28s, Corpus Christi for five T-28s, St. Croix
for a B- 25, Iraq for two Sea Fury MK-11s, and Canada for
a P- 51. He has also rescued two T-6s, a Douglas C-118,
and a Corsair for the Collings Foundation.
Active on the air show circuit for 33 years, Baker has
an unlimited aerobatic waiver, has performed at EAA
AirVenture Oshkosh, and has served as a warbird air show
pilot many times. He also has an Unlimited category
air racing record. Baker is currently the chief pilot for
NASCAR and the Daytona International Speedway.
Lance A. Neibauer
– EAA Homebuilders Inductee
Lance A. Neibauer is the founder of Lancair International
Inc. and the designer of its line of aircraft. He began his
career as a graphic designer, after receiving his degree from
Michigan State University in 1971. Neibauer gravitated
toward aviation in the late 1970s when composite
structures began to appear. He already had a strong family
background in aviation through Meyers Aircraft, where
his uncle had collaborated with the company to build the
Meyers 200, and put his design skills to work on planes.