Distinguished Alumni Awards

Bradley Drake Mottier

Bradley Drake Mottier
To Bradley Drake Mottier, for outstanding entrepreneurial leadership in the development, manufacturing, and marketing of innovations in the aircraft industry.

Vice President and General Manager, Business and General Aviation, GE Aviation, Cincinnati, OH

  • BS, 1979, General Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
  • MS, 1981, General Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
  • MBA, 1989, University of Chicago

In 1980, while a graduate student at Illinois, Bradley Drake Mottier was hired as an independent consultant by Slick Electro, a small aviation company in Rockford, Illinois to work on engineering projects. After completing graduate school, Mottier joined Slick, which later changed its name to Unison Industries, as a senior development engineer. Between 1980 and 2002, Mottier moved up through the ranks, holding various leadership positions in engineering, manufacturing operations, marketing, and sales, and helping Unison grow to become the world leader in high-energy ignition and permanent magnet alternator systems for airborne, marine, space, and industrial applications. During those years, Mottier was awarded U.S. patents for technologies that enabled numerous aviation world records, and he received industry and NASA recognition for his work. Today, virtually every aircraft in the free world flies with a Unison product on board.

When GE acquired Unison in 2002, Mottier stayed on as president to lead and integrate the business into GE Aviation. In 2005, Mottier took a new role to become a GE corporate officer and vice president and general manager of GE Aviation Services. In 2008, he left Aviation Services to form a new division to focus GE technologies and infrastructure in the business and general aviation market. Today, the new Business and General Aviaiton division is leading the development of innovative products and services for noncommercial, non-military aviation operations and has already secured commercial programs that will generate over $1 billion of annual revenues by 2020.

Mottier has a distinguished record of service to the fields of science and engineering. He currently serves as vice president of the Sontag Foundation and director of the General Aviation Manufacturers Association where he leads the Technical Policy Committee. He is a member of the President’s Council for the University of Illinois and the University’s Innovation Leadership Advisory Board. He is a former member of the Department of General Engineering Alumni Advisory Board and received its Distinguished Alumnus Award in 2003.

Current as of 2011.