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Celebrating the Learjet Legend

Members of Greteman Group joined the thousands who gathered at One Learjet Way on October 25 to celebrate the Year of Learjet finale. The day kicked off with a commemoration ceremony that included a Learjet 24 flyby by renowned pilot and aerial cinematographer Clay Lacy.

If Lacy’s name isn’t familiar to you, his work is. He’s shot scenes for everything from such Hollywood blockbusters as Top Gun and The Right Stuff to airline commercials. That coupled with his other flying experience – air race, alrline, experimental, military, private – has racked up 50,000 flight hours, earning him more time flying a jet than any person worldwide. Oh, and did we mention that he was born and raised in Wichita?

The first Learjet 35, now on permanent display at Bombardier Wichita, made a beautiful backdrop for a ceremony that included words by Mayor Carl Brewer, Bombardier Learjet VP and GM David Coleal and VP John Dieker. Employees who worked on the original Learjet 35 program were recognized onstage.

Eleven Bombardier aircraft made for a stop-you-in-your-tracks static display, while a mockup of the new, all-composite Learjet 85 midsize aircraft had everyone talking. The interior, designed by Wichita’s own Bill Goings and Laurie Cox, includes a sleek black and white cabin with a stunning raw silk headliner. This will be one gorgeous, high-performance jet.

A small evening reception for customers, state officials (including aviation-booster Gov. Kathleen Sibelius) and partners looked ahead to new opportunities while reflecting on all that’s happened since 1963 and that first history-making flight. When the Learjet 23 took to the skies over Wichita, it created a new category of flight. Business aviation. And a new breed of traveler. The jetset.

Sonia had great fun reconnecting with longtime friend Don Grommesh, who helped Bill Lear develop the original Learjet.

Two Stellar Brands

Two great examples of branding took place recently. First: LawKingdon’s much-anticipated open house celebrating its new brand and revamped offices. The other: a presentation at the WSU School of Art & Design by renowned air-to-air photographer (and father of our very own Ashley Bowen Cook) Paul Bowen. Here are a few highpoints about each.

LawKingdon – Inspire. Create. Achieve.

We’ve worked with this outstanding architectural firm for years, assisting with environmental graphics on everything from the Provo (Utah) Towne Center to the Keeper of the Plains Plaza at the rivers’ confluence in downtown Wichita. When LawKingdon decided it was time to develop a brand that more truly conveys their architectural philosophy – they turned to us. We’re glad they did.

LawKingdon gutted its offices and completely re-imagined them, creating an innovative, must-experience environment. What walls remain are covered in vibrant yellow, red, gray and black graphics showcasing the firm’s work and approach.

Dennis Smith has grown this employee-owned and managed firm from 27 team members in 1994, when he was named president, to approximately 100 today (six work at the Dallas branch office).

One of his first initiatives was to diversify the company, moving it into health care, hospitality, new retail markets and special projects.

Dennis says our 3D invitation has been a huge hit with customers, who’ve been displaying it on their desks and telling LawKingdon how much they love them (the cards and the firm).

To learn more about LawKingdon, visit their new website.

One look at Paul’s body of work tells you this man is a master. But what’s not so immediately apparent is an equally important component of Paul’s incredible success. Early in his career, he branded himself as as aviation expert, and even more specifically, an artist who knew how to capture an aircraft in flight. He says, as a freelance photographer, “I’m unemployed until the phone rings.” Constant innovation, a to-die-for Rolodex and a willingness to strap himself into the tailgunner position of a B-25 (practically hanging out of the plane at 10,000 feet) has kept Paul in demand for 30+ years. Paul blazed new trails, showing us mortals images previously the provenance of angels. His first in a long list of now-famous, otherworldly vortices photographs was of a graceful Learjet rising out of a cloud bank over California. Others have emulated the technique, but Paul will forever be linked with these groundbreaking images. “We’ve milked it for all it’s worth,” Paul laughs.

Wichita Eagle aviation reporter Molly McMillin asked Paul questions we secretly wanted to. Most scared moment? Once when, after half an hour of shooting out of the open back of his B-25, he looked down and saw the strap buckling him in had come undone. He “changed his pants” and went back to shooting, he said.

Today, Paul has published four books and his work has graced the covers of 950 magazines. He has been inducted into the prestigious Canon Explorers of Light program. You can see his work for yourself at his website.

GG brand director Ashley Bowen Cook shares much with her famous pop. Including the fact that they each got airsick the first time they flew. To this day, both are afraid of heights.

Dreaming of a Bright Christmas

We’ve started planning our holiday GG team activities. (Sorry, super secret for the moment, but we’ll be sure to share details later.) All this how-can-we-make-the-world-better thinking has got us, well, thinking.

If you’re stretching a bit more this holiday season and maybe looking for a new outlet for making a difference, we hope you’ll consider some of these worthy causes supported by our clients.

Give Kids the World (GKTW)

Every year Signature Flight Support helps make magical memories for children with life-threatening illnesses and their families. The GKTW 70-acre Orlando-based resort – design-built for children with special needs – has brightened the lives of more than 88,000 families from around the world.


FlightSafety International founder Al Ueltschi has long championed this wonderful organization and serves as chairman of the ORBIS International Board of Directors. As many as 28 million people worldwide have blindness that could have been prevented or treated (out of a total blind population of 37 million). ORBIS takes treatment to where it’s most needed – developing countries, where 90 percent of these cases reside.

Or that you’ll consider spreading the joy to some nonprofit clients we’ve had the privilege of working with.

Kansas Children’s Service League

KCSL has been helping Kansas children and their families since 1893 – working to keep children safe, families strong and communities engaged. Its Kids Now! program helps children in foster care by providing funds for everything from school supplies and graduation gowns to athletic shoes and music lessons.


This incredible organization provides choices and resources for people who are blind or low vision. And has for 77 years. It uniquely combines employment opportunities with rehabilitation services and public outreach. Your gift can provide training that enables a senior to stay in her home, adaptive aides for a student with impaired vision, education that helps prevents blindness and much more.