Awards & Publicity


The Groen Brothers Aviation Company periodically gives out an award called the Pioneers of Vertical Flight Award.  Previously the award has been given to such luminaries as Stanly Hiller inventor of the Hiller helicopter and Johnny Miller a now 99 year old pilot who beat Amelia Earhart in a race to be the first person to fly coast to coast in a gyroplane.  So it was with total astonishment that I greeted the news that I was to be the next recipient of this prestigious award. 



Farthest Flown to Convention Award                      Pioneers of Vertical Flight Award

Among the highlights of our trip was attending several gyroplane fly-ins including the Popular Rotorcraft Association's international convention in Mentone, Indiana.  Each year there is an award given out to the pilot flying the longest distance to the convention.  Most years it is awarded to Greg Gremminger who each year flys in from St. Louis approximately 300 miles away.  In 2005 I received the award for having flown over 6,000 miles since my departure from Phoenix. 


       Television interview in St. George, Utah       At the presentation of the award for
               at the conclusion of the trip.                 the Pioneers of Vertical Flight.
                                                                        We are standing next to a SparrowHawk
                                                                                   gyroplane similar to the one I flew.  The map
                                                                                        shows our route through all 48 states.    


Copy of press release that appeared on MSNBC, Yahoo, and dozens of other websites. 




SALT LAKE CITY – October 6, 2005 – Groen Brothers Aviation, Inc. (GBA) (OTC: BB GNBA) announced today that Mr. Rob Dubin is a recipient of their “Pioneers of Vertical Flight” award.  The presentation will be made at an upcoming awards ceremony during the EAA (Experimental Aircraft Association) Copperstate Fly-In, held at the Casa Grande Municipal Airport near Phoenix, AZ.  The award is presented in recognition of Rob’s accomplishment of being the first person to fly a gyroplane in consecutive flights through all 48 of the continental United States. Rob’s seven month long journey began on February 25th in Phoenix, AZ.  He completed his ambitious voyage, flying a circuitous route around the country that brought him earlier this week to St. George, Utah.


Flying SparrowHawk and SparrowHawk prototype gyroplanes designed by GBA’s American Autogyro, Rob enjoyed seeing the United States from a bird’s eye view.  Rob flew over 10,000 miles at an average speed of 55 mph and stopped at more than 140 airports along the way.  He provided ground bound friends and supporters the opportunity to follow along with flight updates and pictures from the cockpit on his website at  Rob wasn’t alone in his “GyroAmerica” endeavor.  His wife Dee accompanied him on the ground, driving a motorhome with SUV in tow, meeting Rob in the evenings at small airports along their route.   Their journey was purposefully easy going and slow, traveling only every third or fourth day with off days spent exploring local areas.  


“The gyroplane is the ideal choice for a journey like this,” said Dubin.  “It’s unique design gives it the ability to fly low and slow if desired, and do so safely. The SparrowHawk was perfect for enjoying an aerial view of the beauty this country affords.”


  “Groen Brothers Aviation salutes Rob Dubin for his courage, adventuresome spirit, and this remarkable accomplishment,” said David Groen, President and CEO.  “We’ve followed his progress throughout his flight and are very pleased and proud to honor him with this award.”



About Groen Brothers Aviation, Inc.

Groen Brothers Aviation, Inc. has developed the first commercially viable modern gyroplane, the “Hawk 4.”  The gyroplane is a hybrid aircraft with the low operating cost of an airplane and the off-runway operating capability of a helicopter.  Through its wholly-owned subsidiary, Groen Brothers Aviation USA, Inc., the Company has also developed and is currently selling a smaller kit gyroplane, the “SparrowHawk,” to meet the growing demands of the home-built gyroplane kit market, and to provide a safe, economical airborne patrol vehicle for law enforcement and other government applications.  The Company continues to develop a nationwide dealership network for the sale of these products. 


The Company is also offering its proprietary technology to develop large compound rotorcraft capable of vertical take-off with ultra-heavy payloads and substantial range.  Applications for this technology include land and sea-based heavy-lift military freighters, an aerial fire-fighting vehicle and a runway-independent commercial airliner.  Further information about the Company, its products, and individual members of “GBA Team Hawk” is available on the Company's web site at:



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October 6, 2005 - EAA member Rob Dubin completed his trip to the lower 48 United States in a gyroplane when he landed in St. George, Utah, Thursday. Rob set out from Mesa, Arizona, February 28 with his wife, Dee, following on the ground in their motor home.

During their trip, Rob flew his SparrowHawk over 10,000 miles at an average speed of 55 mph and the couple stopped at more than 140 airports along the way. Their travels made them the first to fly a gyroplane on an uninterrupted voyage to each state in the Continental U.S.

“I would love to do it again,” said Rob. “My wife wouldn’t hear of it, but I would love to do it again.”

Rob will be presented with the Groen Brothers Aviation Pioneers of Vertical Flight award at the Copperstate Regional EAA Fly-In, at the Casa Grande Municipal Airport near Phoenix, Arizona on October 8.

“Groen Brothers Aviation salutes Rob Dubin for his courage, adventuresome spirit, and this remarkable accomplishment,” said David Groen, President and CEO. “We’ve followed his progress throughout his flight and are very pleased and proud to honor him with this award.”

The SparrowHawk is a two-place gyro designed by Groen Brothers Aviation’s American Autogyro subsidiary and is powered by a 2.2 liter Subaru engine. The aircraft’s ability to fly low and slow gave Rob a view of the country unlike any other.

“Flying over (Nebraska and Iowa) was just fascinating, it was just beautiful,” he said. “That kind of flying was very relaxing because the weather was generally good.”

For more information on Rob and Dee’s U.S. travels, to see photos, a map of their route and read Rob’s travel log visit


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FROM AOPA- The Airplane Owners and Pilots Association 


Pilot Briefing

GA news in review

October 2005

Pilot flies across continental United States in gyroplane

Click for larger image

Gyroplane pilot Rob Dubin recently completed a 10,000-mile, 215-hour journey across the contiguous 48 states. Dubin left Phoenix, Arizona, on February 25 on a trip that took him along the beaches of Florida to Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, through the Rocky Mountains, to Mount Shasta in California, and ended in St. George, Utah, on October 5. Dubin said he stopped at 140 airports along the way and flew at an average of 48 knots between 100 and 700 feet agl to "really take time to explore America." Dubin's wife also traveled across the country, but she made the trek along the ground in a motor home. The two met each night at airports along his route. Read about Dubin's adventure in his online flight logs.

(October 21, 2005)


Copyright Rob Dubin 2005 • Contact Rob at alpinefilm (at) gmail (dot) com