GILFORD — It’s the little things that make the big differences.
That sums up why the New Hampshire Pilots Association decided to name Laconia Municipal Airport Manager Marv Everson as its Airport Manager of the Year.
Several years ago the association suggested to Everson’s predecessor that a gate be installed in the security fence on the airport’s southern perimeter so pilots on a stopover could easily walk to the Kitchen Cravings restaurant for a bite to eat.
David DeVries, president of the New Hampshire Pilots Association, made that initial request, but heard nothing back, he said. But some years later, after Everson had assumed the position, he asked again. Not long afterward, Everson was back in touch with DeVries and set things in motion so the gate could be installed.
“He helped us to get this done,” said DeVries, who was on hand to present the award to Everson at the beginning of Thursday’s Laconia Airport Authority meeting held at the airport’s terminal.
For DeVries, the effort to get the gate installed which provides a helpful service to pilots is a case in point of how Everson approaches all aspects of his job.
“I’ve never come across an airport manager who enjoyed his job so much,” said DeVries, of Windham, explaining why the organization which represents about half of the 1,000 general aviation pilots in the state decided to select Everson as the first recipient of the award.
Another pilot, Ken Costa, of Meredith, agreed.
“Anytime there is a concern he tries to get something done,” he said. “He listens. He picks up the ball and runs with it.”
Everson has managed the Laconia Airport for the past five years.
During that time there has been a renovation of the airport’s terminal building to make it more welcoming to pilots and passengers who fly in and out on corporate planes. More recently he oversaw a $3 million taxiway project, largely funded by the FAA, which included drainage improvements and a 5,904-square-yard expansion of an aircraft parking apron, adding 17 new aircraft parking positions.
Thursday’s award presentation took Everson by surprise.
“I was blown out of the water,” he said on Friday. “I wanted to accommodate them,” he said of the Pilots Association’s request. “Their thank-you was sufficient.”
Everson started working at the airport in 2014 as the facilities manager. Prior to that his work experience has been in property management. He became airport manager a year later.
In addition to the terminal and taxiway projects, there have been upgrades to the airport’s lighting and navigational aids, Everson said. Removal of trees which are beginning to encroach on the ends of the runways is scheduled to begin over the winter and will probably take two years to complete, he added.
In addition, the maintenance of the airport’s approximately 32 acres of paved surface — runways, taxiways, and tarmac — never stops, Everson pointed out.
“It’s truly a jewel in our state,” DeVries said of the Laconia Airport. “It’s beautifully maintained. It shows off our state.”