The National General Aviation Awards Committee has named this year’s regional General Aviation Awards winners, who are also finalists for the national awards.
The mission of the General Aviation Awards program is to recognize individual aviation professionals on the local, regional, and national levels for their contributions to aviation, education, and flight safety. The program is a cooperative effort between more than 17 general aviation industry sponsors and the FAA. National judging has now begun and national winners will be announced by March 1.
This year’s regional winners are:
REGIONAL CERTIFICATED FLIGHT INSTRUCTORS (CFIs) OF THE YEAR
Cleophas Hodge of Saint Thomas, US Virgin Islands, represents the Southern Region.He is the owner, chief flight instructor, check airman, and pilot examiner at Ace Flight Center. He also serves as a FAASTeam Lead Representative for the FAA’s safety program and is a Coast Guard Auxiliary volunteer pilot.
Theodore Matthews of Aurora, Colo., represents the Northwest Mountain Region.He is a Master CFI and a Master Ground Instructor at Aspen Flying Club, providing flight and ground training at Denver’s Centennial Airport (APA). Specializing in primary, advanced, and simulator training, he also serves as a FAASTeam representative in the FAA’s Denver FSDO area.
Jonathan Moss from Arkadelphia, Ark., represents the Southwest Region.He is the chief flight instructor and a faculty member at Henderson State University performing stage checks and teaching aviation courses. He serves as a FAASTeam Representative in the FAA’s Little Rock FSDO area.
Janice Newman of Rye, N.H., is the Eastern Region winner. She owns and manages Premier Aviation, a technically advanced aircraft flight school at Portsmouth International (PSM). She also serves as a FAASTeam representative and flew mercy flights after the Haitian earthquake in a Pilatus PC-12.
Judy Ann Phelps of Santa Paula, Calif., is the Western-Pacific Regional winner. She is a Master CFI-Aerobatic who teaches spin and tailwheel endorsements and emergency maneuver training. She also instructs private, commercial and instrument students at CP Aviation at (SZP) Santa Paula Airport. She is a member of the FAASTeam with the Van Nuys FSDO and volunteers with the Ninety Nines and IAC, the International Aerobatic Club.
Mike Wagers from Louisville, Ky., represents the Central Region.He is the chief flight instructor and Department Chair for the Academy at Shawnee, an aviation magnet school that is the only FAA recognized Part 141 flight program at the high school level. He also participates in the FAAST program and the Civil Air Patrol youth programs.
Therese Whiting of Ann Arbor, Mich., was selected by the Great Lakes Region. She is the chief flight instructor at Solo Aviation, Inc, a Part 141 flight school at Ann Arbor Municipal Airport (ARB), and is active in Women in Aviation and Girls with Wings. Therese raised over $4,000 for Angel Flight charity in the Air Race Classic 2010.
REGIONAL AVIONICS TECHNICIANS OF THE YEAR
Andy Braun of Hilltown, Pa., represents the Philadelphia FSDO and the Eastern Region. He is the Senior Avionics Technician on the Flightline at Agusta Westland at the Northeast Philadelphia Airport. He utilizes his background as an airframe and powerplant technician, a fixed wing pilot and his recent rotor wing certification to ground test, to flight test and to troubleshoot.
Russ Callender is from Houlton, Wis., and is the Great Lakes Region and Minneapolis FSDO avionics technician of the year. He owns R C. Avionics, located on the Anoka County Airport in Blaine, Minn. He holds a private pilot certificate, a repairman certificate and has been servicing aircraft for more than 30 years. He specializes in computer drafting and redesign of aircraft panels.
Nora Odom lives and works in Panama City, Fla., and represents the Southern Region as well as the Alabama/Northwest Florida FSDO. Sue has been employed by Coastal Helicopters for more than 15 years. She holds FAA certificates for repairman and private pilot. Sue works on both helicopters and fixed wing aircraft updating, retrofitting, and installing new equipment.
Del Willeford Jr hails from Phoenix and was recognized by the Southwestern Region and the Scottsdale FSDO. He is an FAA certificated repairman as well as a private pilot. He is the avionics manager for Landmark Aviation, an FBO at the Scottsdale Airport.
REGIONAL AVIATION MAINTENANCE TECHNICIANS OF THE YEAR
Steve Barbieri of Summerville, S.C., is the Southern Region and Columbia FSDO AMT of the year. He holds airframe and powerplant certificates with inspection authorization and is a private pilot. He works for Pelican Aviation, an FBO at the Summerville/Dorchester County Airport. He has served on the Advisory Board for Trident Technical College and as a Technical Advisor for homebuilt aircraft builders.
Rhonda Cooper of Wilmington, Del., was recognized by the Eastern Region and Philadelphia FSDO. She works as an Instructional Course Developer and Trainer for Sikorsky Global Helicopters in Coatesville, Pa. She holds an FAA airframe and powerplant certificate and a Master of Arts in Education, Curriculum, and Instruction. She has earned diamond, ruby and silver AMT awards and serves as a lead representative for the FAASTeam.
Russell Gaines of Benton, Ark., is the Southwest Region and Little Rock FSDO award winner. He works for the Arkansas Children’s Hospital Angel One Transport operation in Little Rock. He holds a certificate with airframe and powerplant endorsements with inspection authorization as well as a private pilot certificate. He works full time at the hospital to maintain two Sikorsky S76C+ helicopters and part time at Metro Aviation.
Art Gee lives and works in Victorville, Calif. He represents the Western Pacific Region and the Riverside FSDO. He holds FAA airframe and power plant and flight engineer certificates. His many years as an AMT contribute to his skills as a trainer and youth recruiter. Art works for the Victor Valley Aviation Education Consortium, which is a collaborative effort of college, city, county, and industry leaders to make training opportunities available.
Joe Morales from Lakewood, Colo., represents the Denver FSDO and Northwest Mountain Region. He is the quality control manager and repair station chief inspector for Doss Aviation at the United States Air Force Academy. Doss Aviation maintains more than 50 aircraft in support of various USAFA student flight training activities. He is a certificated airframe and powerplant mechanic with inspection authorization and a certificated flight instructor. He is a FAASTeam representative and a captain in the Civil Air Patrol.
Bob Schallip Jr from Barbeau, Mich., is the Great Lakes Region and the Detroit FSDO. He holds an airframe and power plant certificate with inspection authorization as well as a private pilot certificate from the FAA. He works for Soo Air, Inc at the Sault Ste Marie Municipal Airport/Sanderson Field (ANJ). He has earned the silver and gold AMT awards and serves as a FAASTeam Representative.
Chip Woods of Moscow, Tenn., was selected by the Central Region and Memphis FSDO. He is an airframe and powerplant mechanic with inspection authorization as well as a private pilot. He has been employed by FedEx Express in Memphis as a technical writer /auditor for more than 15 years. He owns Dutchman Aero Services at the Hawks Nest Airport (4TN3) which specializes in maintenance, service, and modification of vintage and warbird aircraft. The holder of a bronze AMT award, he also serves as a FAASTeam Representative.
REGIONAL FAASTeam REPRESENTATIVES OF THE YEAR
Jerry Harris of Wilmington, Del., is the Eastern Region Representative of the Year. He is a private instrument rated pilot and works with the Philadelphia FSDO as a FAASTeam Lead Representative. He not only assists with safety programs, he also devotes many hours to developing training materials for both the FAASTeam and the new WINGS program. He was an Aviation Safety Counselor with the previous FAA safety program and had earned Phase 15 of the old WINGS program.
Mark Hartz of Almyra, Ark., represents the Southwestern Region. He works with the Little Rock FSDO and the Arkansas Agricultural Aviation Association to promote safe aviation practices. He is a commercial pilot and holds an airframe and powerplant certificate. He was an Aviation Safety Counselor (ASC) before joining the new FAASTeam safety program. He counsels agricultural pilots about safety and works with those who have experienced aircraft accidents or incidents.
Scott Johnson of Eagan, Minn., represents the Great Lakes Region. He works with the Minneapolis FSDO. He is the owner and chief instructor for Stick-n-Rudder Training and requires all of his students and instructors to participate in the WINGS Pilot Proficiency Program. He not only presents safety seminars and CFI/DPE modules for the FAASTeam but also recruits new representatives. He is very active in the Minnesota Wing of the Civil Air Patrol.
Bill Schroeder of Carson City, Nev., was selected by the Western Pacific Region. He is a flight and ground instructor whose specialty is flying safely in the mountains. He instructs for the Reno FSDO FAASTeam and the Nevada Wing of the Civil Air Patrol. He is a 6-time Master CFI and also holds Master level WINGS. He serves as a FAASTeam Lead representative and is a facilitator for the CFI/DPE workshops hosted by the FAASTeam program.
John Scott of Denver is the Northwest Mountain Region winner. He is a flight and ground instructor as well as a designated pilot examiner (DPE) and a FAASTeam lead representative in the Denver FSDO area. He is responsible for the quarterly CFI/DPE seminars for the Denver FSDO and participates in a wide range of safety programs throughout the area. Recently he received the authority to conduct flight checks for initial CFIs.
Vicki Sherman of Deland, Fla., was selected by the Orlando/Northern Florida FSDO and the Southern Region. She is a flight, ground, and simulator instructor who sponsors and teaches many FAAST/WINGS seminars. Since 1992, she has been a crewmember of the FAA Production Studios as a speaker, a hostess, and an interviewer. A 3-time Master CFI, she volunteers with the Ninety Nines, the Florida Association of Flight Instructors, and the National Aviation Safety Foundation.
Jim Trusty of Old Hickory, Tenn., is the Nashville FSDO and Central Region winner. He is a flight and ground instructor and works for Howell Enterprises in Smyrna. He is a long time volunteer with the FAA’s safety program. He teaches several safety seminars every year, conducts WINGS weekends, and writes aviation safety articles.
Support and sponsorship for the General Aviation Awards program is provided by Women in Aviation International (WAI), The Society of Aviation and Flight Educators (SAFE), the Professional Aviation Maintenance Association (PAMA), the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA), the National Association of State Aviation Officials (NASAO), the National Air Transportation Association (NATA), the General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA), the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), the Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA), the Aircraft Maintenance Technology Society (AMT Society), the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA), the Aeronautical Repair Station Association (ARSA), and Aircraft Electronics Association (AEA).
Additional support is being provided by Advocates for Aviation Safety Foundation (AASF), Aeronautical Proficiency Training LLC (AVTrain), Master Instructors LLC, National Aviation Safety Foundation (NASF), and Rich Stowell Consulting.
For more information: GeneralAviationAwards.org