The Milestone Aviation team


The seven former NetJet employees are planning to create the world's largest helicopter lessor. Milestone Aviation Group’s launch management team consists of Richard Santulli, William Kelly, Michael Wargotz, John Burns, Matthew Harris, Daniel Rosenthal and Robert Dranitzke.

Richard Santulli, chairman of the board of directors

Rich Santulli is most famous as the inventor of fractional aircraft ownership and the founder of NetJets. Before NetJets, where he was chairman and CEO, he build RTS Helicopter into the world’s largest helicopter lessor. At its peak it owned almost 200 helicopters. RTS focused on offshore oil and gas leases in the Gulf of Mexico.

He started his career at Goldman Sachs eventually heading its leasing business.

“If you were to pick someone to join you in a foxhole, you couldn’t do better than Rich. No matter what the obstacles, he just doesn’t stop,” said Warren Buffet in his 2007 letter to shareholders of Berkshire Hathaway.

William Kelly, chief executive officer

William (Bill) Kelly became chief executive officer of NetJets Europe after spending six years at the company in a variety of roles including chief operating officer and chief financial officer.

He started his career at KPMG in 1989 specialising in insurance. In 1994 he joined Procter & Gamble, working in senior finance roles. He also worked at a mobile internet subsidiary of Deutsche Telekom before joining NetJets.

Kelly is based in Dublin.

Robert Dranitzke, managing director

Based in Dublin Dranitzke is responsible for sales and business development. Before joining Milestone he was as NetJets Europe’s chief operating officer.

He joined NetJets Europe as a business development manager and was director of marketing, communications and corporate social responsibility before becoming COO.

Daniel Rosenthal, president

Based in Milestone Aviation Group LLC’s Columbus office Rosenthal is also responsible for sales and business development.

He was executive vice president in the office of the chairman at NetJets responsible for oversight of and accountability for multiple departments, including planning and logistics, owner and employee services, shared IT, and government relations and corporate responsibility.

He led negotiations for bargaining agreements with pilots and mechanics; spearheaded a major owner sales and retention initiative; negotiated a large economic development incentive package; and established a closer working relationship between NetJets US and NetJets Europe.

Rosenthal was as an attorney at Williams and Connolly in Washington, DC.

Matthew Harris, chief operating officer

Milestone says Harris is responsible for Milestone Aviation Group LLC’s sales and business development out of the United States office.

He was executive vice president for owner and employee services at NetJets. He also managed flight dispatch, trip planning, meteorology, scheduling and crew communications departments.

Harris is also a private pilot.

Michael Wargotz, chief financial officer

Wargotz was chief financial advisor for NetJets and adviser to Richard Santulli.

He began his career in Price Waterhouse, moving to American Express and then HFS Incorporated, and its successor, Cendant Corporation.

Wargotz was chief executive officer a Cendant operating division generating more than $500 million in revenue and $70 million in operating income.

John Burns, general counsel and corporate secretary.

The former general counsel at NetJets Burns has 30 years’ business aviation experience and has been involved in hundreds of aircraft deals.

At NetJets, Burns managed all legal and regulatory affairs for all of the NetJets businesses including NetJets Europe and NetJets Middle East.