NTRA named finalist to land MD Helicopters

By: Daniel Gotera Email
By: Daniel Gotera Email

GRAYSON COUNTY, Tex. -- Officials say Grayson County is a finalist to become the new home for aviation manufacturer MD Helicopters. Now the question becomes how do county leaders convince MD Helicopters that the North Texas Regional Airport is the place to set-up shop?

Grayson County Judge Drue Bynum likened the scenario Grayson County finds itself in to the Final Four currently going on in college basketball. The county is one of the finalists, but in order to reach the ultimate prize, much more work needs to be done.

"The North Texas Regional Airport has been selected as the final Texas location by MD Helicopters," Judge Bynum announced Wednesday to a commissioners court packed with city and county officials excited about the possible economic impact this business could have on the area.

"The men and women of Grayson County have established themselves as one of the premier manufacturing points in Texas," Tony Kaai of the Denison Development Alliance said.

County Judge Drue Bynum said MD Helicopter CEO Lynn Tilton informed him of the company's decision on Wednesday, but that announcement is the culmination of three months work by county officials trying to sell the area.

"[It’s a] combination of a dedicated workforce and existing several first class manufacturers sends a strong message to prospective companies that they will be taken care of for the long term," Judge Bynum says the company considers Grayson County a finalist for a variety of reasons. Among them are unrestricted airspace and a combination of a low crime rate and a readily available work force, all points local officials were quick to point out.

"The people of Grayson County can move to the front, so it’s very exciting and rewarding to be part of that team."

Many call the NTRA a diamond in the rough and by adding MD Helicopters and close to 1,500 jobs, that diamond can shine brighter than ever.

Included in the announcement were a slew of ‘thank you's’ for everyone involved including county commissioners, Black Knight Partners, and the mayors of smaller cities within the county, a sign that this move includes everyone-- not just Sherman and Denison.

"We have got to make a compelling argument to get MD Helicopters into Grayson County and all of them said, ‘Judge, what do we need to do?’" Bynum said.

Judge Bynum says a final decision on MD Helicopters new location is expected to come by the end of April.


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