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Posted on: April 2, 2018

Scholes International Airport Recognized as 2018 GA Reliever Airport of the Year by TxDOT


Galveston, TX – April 2, 2018 – As the industry takes notice of the improvements being made both to infrastructure and the management of Galveston’s airport; Scholes International Airport and Airport Director Mike Shahan were recognized by TxDOT at this year’s Aviation Conference as the 2018 General Aviation Reliever Airport of the Year. The recognition comes as a result of the improvements made to the airport surface and infrastructure and the overall development and promotion of the airport.


A testament to Director Mike Shahan’s open communication style of leadership, Scholes International Airport has seen a flurry of improvements over the past few years with no impact on air traffic operations. As part of his proactive approach toward open communications, the airport now convenes regular construction meetings to help aid in coordination across all involved entities. Safety is also placed at the forefront during any project discussion by involving air traffic personnel, local airside businesses, and the airport staff in safety management system assessments, and discussing and mitigating any potential safety risks consistent with FAA requirements.


“The airport manager has done an exceptional job managing the airport and its facilities. He has been instrumental in the professional development of his airport, and his efforts have proven to be successful in ensuring significant growth and increased user activity,” said Keren Williams McLendon, President/CEO of Robinson Aviation Inc. “The airport has shown a steady activity growth trend over the last five years which can be directly attributed to the infrastructure improvements that have been accomplished on the airport.”


The Airport was also recognized for its vital role in providing support for Texas National Guard airlifts and disaster relief in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey. Air traffic control, airport staff, Island Transit, the Galveston Fire Department, and volunteers worked together, extending hours of operation, to help assist with the evacuation of those rescued from flood waters in Dickinson.


“Mike is a tremendous resource and has brought a level of professionalism to our airport that will allow it to serve both business and private aviation needs for our community,” said Deputy City Manager Dan Buckley. “We are fortunate to have someone with his dedication to the Island, as well as the industry on our team.”


When accepting the award for this state-wide recognition at Thursday evenings ceremony, Mike credited the organizations success to a supportive City Council and Management, as well as the hard work and dedication of his team.


“It takes the support of many people to have a successful airport.  We are fortunate that we have the support of our Mayor and City Council, the City management team, the other departments in the City and the Airport Advisory Committee,” said Mike. “The day to day running and maintenance of the airport is done by the fairly small airport staff and they do a great job.  They work hard to make the airport better today than it was yesterday.  Each person continues to learn and improve taking responsibility in what they do each day, and it shows.  It’s an honor to win this award, which I hope, demonstrates to our staff that others recognize their hard work.”


The airport was recognized for the following projects:

  • The construction of a new South Hangar access taxiway that is built to accommodate up to ten, 60’ x 60’ hangars.  One new hangar has been built since the completion of the taxiway.
  • The completion of the roof replacement on the airport terminal.
  • Completing the engineering for several Capital Improvement Projects - including 4.2 miles of perimeter fencing, rehabilitation of all five airport taxiways, rehabilitation of the north hangar aprons and rehabilitation of a runway.  
  • The enactment of an annual driver training program for all airport and fixed base operator employees, which has helped decrease the number of runway incursions.
  • The introduction of annual training for all airport maintenance staff in inspections and communication with the Air Traffic Control tower and performing airfield safety inspections.
  • Currently, the airport is also obtaining permits to build an eight-unit T-hanger with two 60’ x 60’ box hangers as well as working on the bid specifications to rehabilitate the air traffic control tower. 


Please join in congratulating Galveston Scholes International Airport as the 2018 General Aviation Reliever Airport of the Year.


About Scholes International Airport:


Scholes International Airport (KGLS) is located 45 miles southeast of Houston, Texas via Interstate Highway 45 and is considered a general aviation reliever airport. Scholes began service at Galveston Municipal Airport in 1931. In 1942 the airport was expanded and re-designated for use by the U.S. Army for World War II. In 1945, the federal government deactivated the airport and turned it over to the City of Galveston. Scholes International Airport has continued to serve Galveston Island as a valuable asset in meeting the needs of businesses, private pilots and aviation enthusiasts for 87 years. Scholes has prime land ready for development. The overall airspace environment is ideal for pilot training activities and businesses desiring to avoid delays in the busy Houston Metro area. GLS provides excellent growth opportunities for both aeronautical and industrial development. For more information, please visit


About Director Mike Shahan:


Mike Shahan was hired on as Airport Director in July 2015. Mike comes to Scholes International Airport from North Texas Regional Airport in Grayson County where he was employed as the Airport Director for 16 years. Mike graduated from Cameron University with an Associate’s degree in Education and graduated from Oklahoma State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Aviation Science and a Master’s Degree in Applied and Natural Science with a focus on Airport Management. Mike holds an advanced ground instructor rating as well as a Commercial Pilots certificate in both single and multi-engine airplane with instrument ratings.

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