The Ohio Air & Space Hall of Fame and Learning Center (OAS), established in 2019 and headquartered in Columbus, Ohio, today announced the receipt of a $25,000 grant from the charitable foundation of Margi Marsh Bauer, based in Paso Robles, California.   The grant will help fund operations as the OAS conducts Phase One of a multi-million-dollar capital campaign to renovate the original 1929 Port Columbus Air Terminal into interactive exhibit space and a state-of-the-art STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math) learning center.

Ms. Bauer was born in Dayton, Ohio, where her father served as a civilian engineer at Wright Field during WWII.   After the family moved in 1955 to Eastmoor, not far from Port Columbus, Ms. Bauer fondly recalls her family often driving to the airport to watch air traffic for entertainment.  As a student at Eastmoor High School, she was amazed and proud when Jerrie Mock, from nearby Bexley, Ohio became the first woman to fly solo around the world in 1964.

Having since lived on the East Coast, in England, and now in California, Ms. Bauer stopped by the air terminal during a 2018 visit to Columbus and was delighted to learn that a group was working toward saving the historic Art Deco structure.  After following news about the establishment of the non-profit OAS and its long-term lease of the terminal and learning more of the plan to renovate it into a civic showpiece, Ms. Bauer reached out to OAS Executive Director, Ron Kaplan, to say she wanted to help the effort through her charitable foundation.

“When I saw that fantastic building and control tower again I couldn’t help but think about all the remarkable history it represents, both for me personally and for our aviation heritage.   So, once I found out all that the Ohio Air & Space Hall of Fame has planned for its renovation and public use, I just knew I had to get involved,” said Ms. Bauer, who currently serves on the board of directors at the Estrella Warbirds Museum in Paso Robles, California.

Executive Director Kaplan lauded Ms. Bauer’s enthusiasm and generosity.  “Ms. Bauer is among many current and former Ohio residents we’ve heard from who each have a unique understanding of how important it is to preserve this iconic piece of America’s aviation past,” he explained.  “Given her own experience, she also recognizes the value the Ohio Air & Space Hall of Fame Learning Center will provide by showing young people they can shape the amazing possibilities of the future.  We can’t thank Ms. Bauer enough for her vote of support.”

Ms. Bauer’s grant, along with gifts from the Hillsdale Fund, the Wright Brothers Foundation, and others, will be applied toward matching a $550,000 State of Ohio grant designated for the terminal’s renovation.   According to Kaplan, the OAS anticipates work on renovating the terminal and tower to commence in early 2022 while Phase Two of the campaign raises additional funds for completion, operations, STEAM education programs, and public outreach.

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About The Ohio Air & Space Hall of Fame and Learning Center:

The Ohio Air & Space Hall of Fame and Learning Center (OAS) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to permanently preserving the inspiring legacies of this state’s outstanding pioneers of flight, prominently heralding their achievements both as a point of pride and to foster continued innovation and a skilled workforce.   The OAS will additionally educate the public about the rich history of Ohio’s aviation and aerospace industries, and its airports, including that of the OAS’s future home in the soon-to-be-renovated original Port Columbus Air Terminal, located at John Glenn International Airport (CMH) in Columbus, Ohio.