Louisville Int’l Airport to be renamed for Muhammad Ali

Boxing legend and Louisville native Muhammad Ali now has an airport named in his honor.

On Wednesday, January 16, 2019, the Board of the Louisville Regional Airport Authority in Kentucky voted to change the name of the Louisville International Airport to Louisville Muhammad Ali International Airport.

The airport’s three letter international identifier – SDF – will remain the same, in part because another airport, Alice International Airport, in Texas, already has the identifier “ALI.”

Muhammad Ali at Heathrow Airport (date unknown)

Citing research showing that Muhammad Ali has much greater name recognition than Louisville, Ky., Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer said the airport renaming is just one piece of a much broader effort to share and celebrate Ali’s Louisville ties.

As the city of Ali’s birth and the place that throughout his life he proclaimed as “the greatest city in the world,” the Mayor said, “It is our obligation and opportunity to showcase the many stories and complexities that made up the man known as ‘The Greatest of All Time.’”

Muhammad Ali was born on January 17, 1942 and died on June 3, 2016. The Muhammad Ali Center, on Louisville’s Museum Row, explores his life.

*Hat tip to Isaac Alexander, for alerting me to this airport news.

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