Thank you. Ladies and gentlemen, it’s an honor to introduce a person that I consider to be a true visionary in aviation, aerospace and a leader, a true leader, in Atlanticism, a man who has increased cooperation between our respective continents and our economies that have moved forward ever since.

Dr. Tom Enders’ dedication to the transatlantic ideal began on the coast opposite of us tonight. He was in California doing graduate at UCLA. Dr. Enders studied the intricacies of nuclear deterrence. At that time that wasn’t exactly a popular subject back home in Germany.

But then Tom Enders that I know has never bowed to public opinion. Instead Dr. Enders tends to shape public opinion. What has followed is a lifetime of personal accomplishments, forging groundbreaking alliances and partnerships that impacted the future of transatlantic relations and shaped what we now know as the global aerospace bridge. From 2005 to 2009 Dr. Enders served as the chairman of the Atlantic Bridge helping young leaders experience the value of transatlantic relationships and guiding them in that pursuit in politics and in industry.

Dr. Enders is a living example of that goal as reflected in a partnership that he and his friend, Ralph Crosby, struck in 2000 as Northrop Grumman, and EADS, now Airbus Group, started, as they explained to me today, some very fruitful industrial cooperation projects.

But they demonstrated something. They demonstrated the enormous mutual benefit of transatlantic military collaboration. From his impeccable military service, his extensive education, his leadership in global economic alliances, including the Transatlantic Business Council and the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, to not leading Airbus Group, leading them to a place of global prominence, his is a career (LAUGH) that astounds even the most accomplished. And when you look around the room that includes a lot of people here tonight.

However, I could not do justice to this introduction without reflecting on the affect Dr. Enders has had on me, my state and the entire United States Gulf Coast. His life has been shaped by the imperatives of the transatlantic alliance. And it is by that foundation that we will be not only shaped but transformed.

Let me say how proud and grateful Alabama is to have partnered with Dr. Enders in the Airbus Group to change our mutual and respective destinies. Their first commercial final assembly line and their largest investment in America and our ground-breaking entry into the global aerospace industry, ladies and gentlemen, today there can be no doubt that the boardrooms of Europe shape the main streets of America and vice versa.

For Dr. Enders this achievement is only one in a seemingly endless stream of success. Accomplishments that have made the Atlantic Ocean much, much smaller, our nations closer and the partnership between our continents more secure and more successful. Ladies and gentlemen, it is my pleasure to introduce a great global leader who personifies the transatlantic alliance, Dr. Enders, CEO, Airbus Group. (APPLAUSE AND MUSIC)