Muskegon County Hires Airport Management Firm for Muskegon County Airport

Muskegon County Board of Commissioners has approved the hiring of F3 Airport to manage Muskegon County Airport starting in March 2021. The airport is used mostly for general aviation but is also served by United Express regional jets to Chicago-O’Hare operated through Skywest.

Muskegon County Airport had about 20,000 enplanements in 2019, but the impact of Covid-19 on the airline and travel industry in 2020 saw a reduction to approximately 6,000 enplanements in 2020. Milwaukee-based F3 Airport focuses on improving the financial and operational performance of publicly owned airports.

“Muskegon County recognizes the critical role that the Muskegon County Airport plays in the local economy as well as providing area residents a convenient travel option. We want to ensure that this asset remains viable well into the future and hiring a professional manager will help us achieve this goal.” says Mark Eisenbarth, County Administrator. “It is important to understand that the airport will continue to be owned by the County and be under County control. F3 Airport will manage the day-to-day operations and report to the County.”

John Matheson, President of F3 Airport, explained that hiring airport managers is more common now due to the changing environment and increased compliance requirements. “Managing an airport has become much more complex and specialized, so airport owners have found that hiring a professional firm can maximize revenue, improve operations and do a better job of marketing,” Matheson says. “Airports play a vital role supporting the economy of a community. At the same time, it is expensive to operate an airport so creating a strategy that will ensure the long-term financial success of the airport is our focus.”

F3 Airport has recruited an experienced Airport Director, Joel Burgess, to oversee the Muskegon County Airport (MKG) with ties to the local community. Joel has over 25 years’ experience in airport operations and management, most recently at Savannah Hilton Head International Airport, but he is also a native to West Michigan and looks forward to coming back to the area. “West Michigan is my home, and I am excited at the opportunity to be a champion for the Muskegon County Airport in the community and region”, said Burgess.

F3 Airport is part of a larger Real Estate Management Firm, Founders 3 Real Estate Services, based in Milwaukee Wisconsin. The firm also manages marinas all over the US and South America, mainly for cities, counties, and port districts under the F3 Marina brand, including Hartshorn Marina in Muskegon.

About F3 Airport:
F3 Airport is a leader in professional management and consulting services across the U.S. and internationally. Our services include all aspects of development and property management. We work within a public entity framework to meet your goals through a single point of accountability. We provide detailed financial and operational reporting, and execute professional, aggressive marketing programs custom-designed for each airport to establish a brand identity and keep demand high, maximizing revenue.

F3 Airport parent company, Founders 3 Real Estate Services, is the largest independent full-service real estate firm based in Wisconsin. Throughout the past 25+ years, F3 has grown from 8 employees to over 250 employees, and manage properties from Door County, Wisconsin to Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and internationally.

About Muskegon County Airport:
Muskegon County Airport (MKG) is a county-owned, public-use airport in Muskegon County, Michigan. MKG is the aviation gateway to the West Michigan Lakeshore. United Airlines provides daily service through Chicago O’Hare to destinations worldwide. Frequent casino charters operate to Atlantic City, NJ.