People in Aviation: January 2003

 - January 10, 2008, 5:35 AM

Richard Ramsden joined Minneapolis-based Wells Fargo Equipment Finance as a
v-p specializing in corporate aircraft loans and leases. Ramsden came to the company from Bombardier Capital, where he was manager of aircraft finance.

David Joyce was promoted to vice president of the commercial engines operation at General Electric Aircraft Engines and was tapped as an officer of General Electric. He was previously general manager of small commercial engine operations, a position that is now held by Charles “Chip” Blankenship.

Stephen Estill joined Sikorsky Aircraft as vice president of worldwide sales. He was previously v-p of sales and marketing for Bell Helicopter.

Teterboro, N.J.-based Million Air Charter appointed Charlie Geiger as v-p of flight operations.

Pilatus Business Aircraft promoted Piotr “Pete” Wolak to v-p of customer service. The new position brings logistics, customer support and program functions under one organization to facilitate customer service. He was previously v-p of customer service programs.

Jacksonville, Fla.-based Unison Industries appointed Michael Sanders as v-p of engineering with responsibilities for all design engineering, test, certification and configuration management activities for the company.

Midcoast Aviation hired J.P. Michenon as first vice president for operations support. Michenon joined the company from Jet Power and Light, where he was president. Also at Midcoast, Chris Carter was promoted to senior director of engineering; Morris Smith was promoted to senior director of technical service; and Danny Farnham was promoted to first senior director of modifications.

Michael Prieto has resigned from his position as president of the Air Methods products division to join Simplex as president and CEO. Arthur “Art” Torwirt assumed the leadership of the products division as vice president. Torwirt joined Air Methods in 1988 and held positions in engineering, program management and marketing.

Messier-Dowty named Laurent Schneider-Maunoury as v-p of operations. He replaced Guy Giard, who recently retired.

Peggie Giles is the new director of U.S. FBO sales for Jet Aviation. She was promoted from manager of customer service at the company’s Bedford, Mass. facility.

Denver-based Mountain Aviation announced the promotion of Rich Bjelkevig to president/director of operations and Gary Emmerson to vice president. Also, Wallace Nestingen was named secretary/treasurer and director of maintenance.

Gregory Feith was named chairman of Aviation Technology Group’s flight safety and design integration board. Feith was a senior air safety investigator with the NTSB for 20 years.

NationAir Insurance named Pat Stimers as national director of property and casualty operations.

Benet Wilson
was named senior manager of corporate communications for Rolls-Royce North America, with responsibilities for directing all communication activities for the company’s civil aerospace business. She joined the company from Mesa Air Group, where she was director of corporate communications.

Kevin Colson joined St. Louis-based Thunder Air Charter as director of operations. He joined the company from Southern Aviation and Marine in Florida, where he was responsible for all flight operations.

FlightSafety International announced several personnel changes at its learning centers. Ken Baggett was named manager of the company’s Toledo, Ohio learning center. Baggett had been the center’s assistant manager for the past five years. Chip White was promoted to assistant manager of the St. Louis learning centers. He was previously an instructor pilot for the ERJ-145 and DC-9 in St. Louis. Jack Ellis was named manager of the Orlando International Airport learning center. Kyle Davis was promoted to assistant manager of the Toledo learning center. He was previously a regional marketing representative. Patrick Dulac was promoted to assistant manager of FlightSafety’s Paris Le Bourget learning center. Dulac was the center’s director of pilot training.

Art Dube retired as chief pilot from Bristol-Myers Squibb. He had been with the company for 25 years and served as chief pilot for the past 15. Dube is now performing aviation consulting work.

West Star Aviation announced the implementation of a new organizational structure to provide airframe-specific sales expertise to customers throughout the aircraft maintenance process. In doing so, the company promoted three people to management roles. Bill Prescott is managing maintenance sales for Hawkers and Falcons. He has held the positions of QA inspector and maintenance sales coordinator for the company. Wayne O’Hara is managing Conquest, Caravan, King Air and other turboprop maintenance sales. He has worked for West Star for 27 years in several maintenance management capacities. Doug Thompson is now Citation sales manager. Thompson has been with West Star since 1989, initially managing the company’s military contract business and more recently focusing on Citation airframes.

Steven Weinert was named division maintenance manager for West Chester, Pa.-based Key- stone Helicopter with responsibilities for all maintenance, repair/refurbishment and overhaul activity for the 30 aeromedical helicopters managed by Keystone Flight Services Division. He joined the company from Flite Tech Consulting Group in Vancouver, Wash., where he was president. Also at Keystone, Jim Scanish was promoted to technical sales manager for engine-ering services, avionics upgrades/ modifications and special-mission packages. Scanish joined the company in 1981 as an avionics technician and has been the avionics manager since 1989.

Lisa Sasse, national accounts executive for Air Routing International, is heading the company’s new satellite office at Teterboro (N.J.) Airport. Sasse has been with Air Routing International since 1996.

Regina Malec was added to the Corporate Rotable and Supply team with responsibility
for customer service, warranty claims and managing consignment inventories.

Winston-Salem, N.C.-based Piedmont Hawthorne Aviation appointed Ken Sowa to corporate aircraft sales representative in the company’s new sales office at Oxford (Conn.) Airport. Sowa was previously the Northeast director of aircraft sales for Jack Prewitt and Associates.

Michael Grossman is the new chairman of the National Air Transportation Association’s air cargo subcommittee. Grossman is the founder and president of North Canton, Ohio-based Castle Aviation, an on-demand air-freight company.

Columbus, Ohio-based AirNet Systems appointed Bruce Parker, founder and president of IT Management Group, to its board of directors.

The following six people were elected to the Board of Governors of the Flight Safety Foundation: Robert Aaronson, executive v-p of the Americas for Lufthansa Consulting; Victor Aguado, director general of Eurocontrol; Dr. Harold Olusegun Demuren, managing director and CEO of AfriJet Airlines; Klaus Koplin, chief executive of the Joint Aviation Authorities; William Ross Mattes, executive director of Aviation Safety Foundation Australia; and Capt. Akrivos Tsolakis, chairman of the National Aviation Safety Board of the Hellenic Republic.

Brian Barents, Karen Holbrook and Donald Shepperd were appointed to the board of trustees at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. Barents was most recently president, CEO and managing partner of Galaxy Aerospace. Holbrook is president of Ohio State University. Shepperd is president of consulting firm The Shepperd Group.

Mercury Air Centers, a subsidiary of Mercury Air Group, appointed Kenn Ricci, chairman and CEO of Flight Options, and Dick Dodson, former president and CEO of BBA Aviation, to its advisory board of directors. Other board members include George Ball, v-p of logistics for NetJets; Dr. Philip Fagan, board chairman of Mercury Air Group; Joseph Czyzyk, president and CEO of Mercury Air Group; John Enticknap, executive v-p and COO of Mercury Air Centers; and Eric Beelar, v-p of MercFuel. 

Keystone Helicopter founder and chairman emeritus Peter Wright Sr. was presented with a lifetime achievement award by company employees and owners in recognition of his 50 years of rotorcraft industry leadership. 

The LeRoy W. Homer Jr. Foundation is accepting applications for its aviation scholarship program. Three scholarships will be awarded in the spring in Homer’s memory. Homer was the first officer on United Airlines Flight 93, which crashed in Shanksville, Pa., on September 11.

Jerome Fox Lederer received an honorary doctorate in aerospace safety from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. Lederer, 100, organized the Flight Safety Foundation in 1947.

Paul Poberezny, founder and chairman of the Experimental Aircraft Association, was awarded the Wright Brothers Memorial Trophy by the National Aeronautic Association. The award is presented annually to a living person for significant public service of enduring value to aviation in the U.S.

An Arkansas air traffic controller received $6,810 from the FAA for suggesting a way to make radar tracking at multiple airport areas around the country more efficient. Richard Alexander, a controller with Fort Smith Tower/Razorback Approach, serves aircraft for his base airport and for several other Arkansas and Oklahoma airports nearby that don’t have their own radar coverage. Alexander suggested that if the four-digit transponder code assigned to IFR flights on departure could not be read by the computer system, then the four-digit code should flash and the controller would see the flash and fix the problem. The FAA adopted his suggestion.

Final Flight

Michael Bailey, a principal in jet charter company LR Services at Lehigh Valley (Pa.) International Airport, died in November in a skydiving accident in central Florida. Bailey, 55, and another parachutist collided at about 100 ft while descending near the Lake Wales (Fla.) Airport.

Kevin's World

Citation V type ratings were awarded to Kevin Buettner, Kevin Donahue and Kevin Giefer after they completed training under the CAE SimuFlite scholarship program. Buettner is a flight instructor for the University of North Dakota, John D. Odegard School of Aerospace Sciences in Grand Forks, Mich. Donahue is a flight instructor and contract pilot in Phoenix. Giefer is a flight instructor for Kansas State University in Salina, Kan.

Flight Safety Foundation Honorees

Individuals who have contributed to aviation safety were honored by the Flight Safety Foundation in Dublin, Ireland. The organization’s president’s citation was awarded to Arnold Barnett, George Eastman professor of management science at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and Yi Taek Shim, president and CEO of Korean Air. Barnett was honored for outstanding service on behalf of safety for statistical analyses that have influenced government decisions to deploy radar systems to prevent runway collisions and so on. Shim was honored for outstanding achievement in safety leadership for spearheading a safety enhancement program after several accidents in the 1990s.

The Richard Teller Crane Founder’s Award was presented to Rockwell Collins for its contributions to improved operational safety by designing, producing and supporting avionics to enhance the situational awareness of pilots and to ensure safety of the airspace.

Scott Shappell
of the Civil Aerospace Medical Institute of the FAA, and Douglas Wiegmann, assistant professor of aviation human factors at the University of Illinois at Urbana, were honored with the Admiral Luis de Florez Flight Safety Award for joint development and application of the human factors analysis and classification system.
The Honeywell Bendix Trophy for Aviation Safety was presented to Gulfstream Aerospace for its Kollsman enhanced vision system certification team.

Capt. Akrivos Tsolakis, chairman of the Hellenic Republic National Aviation Safety Board, received the Aviation Week & Space Technology distinguished service award for his 50 years of innovation and advocacy, which have helped to improve aviation safety.

The Cecil Brownlow Publication Award was presented to Air Safety Week for its coverage of aviation safety.

Capt. Edmond Soliday
, a United Airlines retiree, received the Laura Taber Barbour Air Safety Award for encouraging airlines to adopt flight operational quality assurance programs and to share safety information.

The Flight Safety Foundation-Boeing Aviation Safety Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to James Reason, retired professor of psychology at the University of Manchester, England, for pioneering methods of proactive safety analysis.