Air Tractor’s Vice President of Finance, David Ickert, has recently retired following 31 years of employment. Upon returning to Olney in 1976, Ickert’s wife Marilynn began working at Air Tractor, with Ickert joining her in 1989.
“One of the first things David Ickert did was to take over managing the company’s finances. This freed our founder Leland Snow to focus on engineering groundbreaking airplanes like the AT-802,” says Air Tractor President Jim Hirsch.
“Being an engineer, Leland was a very precise person,” Ickert recalls. “He was certainly not one to do anything halfway, but it stretched his time to do all the engineering, all of the marketing, and then all of the accounting and the finance. I think he had just reached a point that he was ready to bring in some help.”
After Ickert began his employment it was obvious that he was an outstanding match for the company. Not only did he take on the accounting and finance responsibilities, but he also aided in strengthening Air Tractor’s financial status as well.
“David is always reading and keeping up with the markets, doing research, and figuring out what’s next, and how our airplanes fit into that,” Hirsch notes. “Ickert’s ability to organize the finance and accounting helped provide really helpful strategic insights for our very specialized company.”
“Customers know what they’re getting when they purchase an Air Tractor airplane. And in the area of the business that I’ve been involved with, I hope we’ve been able to create the same confidence with financial institutions, insurance companies, suppliers and others we work with. As an organization, I think people know what we say and what we do is gospel,” Ickert says and he added, “We’ve built a reputation. I am pleased that I have been able to play a part in an organization that is respected and well thought of.”
Ickert says during his retirement he plans on continuing and organizing his longtime hobbies that consist of books, coins and baseball memorabilia collections. But what takes top priority for him will be spending time and watching the activities of his seven grandkids.
“We can’t thank David enough for his hard work and dedication, the long hours,” Hirsch says. “He’s been passionate about our business. There’s nothing more one can ask of a team member.”
Air Tractor’s new Chief Financial Officer is Jeremy Prather, who joined the company in Sept.
He performs the services of financial and strategic advisor to the leadership team and to Jim Hirsch, Air Tractor President.