Principal, Directional Aviation Capital
Kenneth Ricci is a 35 year aviation industry veteran who today is a Principal of Directional Aviation Capital which owns various aviation enterprises including Flexjet, Flight Options, Sentient Jet, SkyJet, Nextant Aerospace, N1 Engines, and Constant Aviation.
Kenn began his aviation career as an Air Force ROTC cadet at the University of Notre Dame and started his first company, Corporate Wings, in 1980. His love of aviation had him founding, acquiring or financing a broad range of aviation companies and ideas over his career. He has assembled one of the largest private aviation flight companies which include Flexjet, Flight Options, Sentient Jet and SkyJet. Together these companies have over $1.5billion in Revenue and operate over 150 aircraft. He founded Nextant Aerospace, the innovator of Aircraft Remanufacturing. And, in 2005, Kenn led the restructuring of the Mercury Air Centers, a $200mil company operating aircraft support facilities at 24 different airports, and sold the Company to Macquarie Infrastructure Trust (MIC) in 2007 in a deal valued at $615mil.
Kenn was honored as an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of Year in 2000 and has been named one the most influential people in aviation by Aviation International News. In 2010 Kenn received the Harvard Business School’s Dively Entrepreneurship Award. And, in 2012 was the youngest recipient of the prestigious William Ong Award for extraordinary achievement and extended meritorious service to the general aviation industry. In 2015, Kenn received the Aviation Week Laureate Award, a benchmark of industry excellence, recognizing his innovation in aircraft remanufacturing through Nextant Aerospace.
In 2016, Kenn received the Cleveland-Marshall College of Law Distinguished Alumni Award honoring him as a global leader in the aviation industry. In that same year, Kenn then received the “Lifetime Aviation Entrepreneur Award” from the Living Legends of Aviation. The “Living Legends of Aviation” are admirable people of remarkable accomplishment in aviation including: Entrepreneurs, innovators, industry leaders, record breakers, astronauts and pilots.
He is an airline transport pilot with extensive International experience and was Governor William Clinton’s pilot when he ran for President in 1992.
Kenn graduated from the University of Notre Dame and the Cleveland Marshall School of Law where he was named as their distinguished alumni of the year in 2016.
Kenn serves on the Board of Trustees for, the University of Notre Dame, the Smithsonian and University Hospitals. He also serves on several Corporate Boards including of Stonebriar Commercial Finance and is an aviation advisor to the Guggenheim Aero Opportunity Fund.
In 2014, Kenn was honored by the Northeast Ohio Chapter of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation for championing research and treatment of the disease, which effects 30,000 children and adults in the United States.
Kenn’s management strategies have been featured in the Wall Street Journal and he is the Author of “Management by Trust”, a book featuring practical management techniques for building employee trust and success.
President & CEO, Embraer Executive Jets
Michael Amalfitano is the President and CEO of Embraer Executive Jets, leading the company’s global business with annual revenues of $1.7 billion and a fleet of more than 1,100 aircraft with over 800 customers worldwide. A long-standing industry veteran, Michael brings 35+ years of experience in executive leadership, global originations, aircraft valuation, asset management and lease/finance structural analysis for the business aviation industry.
Prior to joining Embraer, Michael served as Executive Vice President, Senior Managing Director of Business Aviation at Stonebriar Commercial Finance. He was also Managing Director and Executive Head of Global Corporate Aircraft Finance at Bank of America Merrill Lynch for more than 22 years, following a decade-long tenure in sales management at GE Capital.
In addition to serving on the Leadership Council, the Associate Member Advisory Council and the Joint Task Force Committee of the National Business Aviation Association, Michael is an active member of the Equipment Leasing and Finance Association, Helicopter Association International, European Business Aviation Association and National Aircraft Finance Association. He also holds the distinction as former two-term President of the National Aircraft Finance Association and is former Chairman of the Associate Members Advisory Council for the National Aircraft Resale Association.
Michael graduated with a B.A. in Economics and a Masters in Financial Management from Fairfield University in Fairfield, Connecticut. He has written numerous articles for aviation industry publications and is an active speaker and panelist at business aviation seminars and finance conferences throughout the industry.
Chief Operating Officer, Jetcraft
Peter Antonenko joined Jetcraft in 2006 and became Chief Operating Officer in 2014, currently overseeing the company’s operations and legal divisions. Prior to joining Jetcraft, Peter was a corporate lawyer at Fafinski Mark & Johnson, a commercial law firm specializing in aviation, where he participated in both litigation and transactional work, developing commercial and corporate aircraft purchase and lease agreements for lenders and buyers.
Peter received his Law degree with an emphasis on corporations, taxation and commercial transactions at the Creighton University School of Law, and holds an undergraduate degree in Communications from the University of North Dakota. He lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota with his wife and two daughters.
CEO, Charlie Bravo Aviation
Charlie Bravo Aviation Co-Founder and CEO René Banglesdorf provides company leadership and management from her work in a number of fields. She pulls marketing and entreprenuerial experience from the software, telecom, retail, publishing and aviation industries.
René serves as a spokesperson for business aviation and women in aviation in speaking and press appearances all over the world. She is an advisor to Phoenix Arising Aviation Academy, a group that teaches the love of STEM learning through aviation in her local community. She also serves on the board of International Aviation Women’s Association as the industry vice president for General Aviation, Business Aviation and Helicopters. René also is an active member of the Women Presidents Organization, the National Business Aircraft Association and the National Air Transportation Association President’s Council.
|Kirsten Bartok Touw
Managing Partner, AirFinance
Kirsten Bartok Touw is the founder and Managing Partner of AirFinance Leasing LLC, a firm that specializes in the financing of helicopters and business jets globally.
AirFinance's core business is as an originator and servicer of business jet and helicopter loans that are backed by the United States Export Import Bank. AirFinance also works with Canada's Export Development Bank and since 2012 has originated and approved more than $750M in general aviation financings.
In 2015, AirFinance won Corporate Jet Investors’ award for the Most Innovative Financier Europe Middle East and Africa for a G450 financing into Nigeria to a first time buyer. In 2014, the firm won the over award for the Most Innovative Financier globally with the US Export Import Bank for their creation of the Qualified Advisor Program and in 2013, AirFinance won Deal of the Year for developing and structuring Flight Options' Phenom 300 financing by BNDES, Brazil's ECA.
In 2010, Kirsten took a leave of absence to work with Hawker Beechcraft Corporation the manufacturer of business, special-mission and trainer aircraft. While at Hawker, Kirsten was the company’s Vice President, Strategy, Structured Finance & Corporate Development where she was responsible for sales financing, joint ventures, corporate development, strategy, and M&A.
As the Vice President of Structured Finance & Corporate Development, Kirsten was responsible for strategic alternative, corporate development, joint ventures, structured finance, customer aircraft financing, developing and maintaining relations with financing institutions, investment banking communities as it relates to mergers and acquisitions, global strategic partnerships as well as use of HBC's balance sheet to procure financing for customer aircraft for both the general aviation and government businesses. She was also integral in HBC's expansion in Asia, specifically China, including discussions with potential JV partners and strategic partnerships.
Before AirFinance, Kirsten was a co-founder, board member and CFO of XOJET, a US based next generation fleet operator sold to TPG Capital in the fall of 2007. As CFO, she oversaw financial and strategic initiatives including aircraft purchasing and financing for XOJET’s 50 plus aircraft. At XOJET, Kirsten structured and raised more than $3 billion of equity and debt financing which included the first export credit agency pre-delivery payments financing in the business jet space, the first commercial style business jet leasing transaction by a major investment bank, and the first sovereign government financed equity and debt facility.
Prior to joining XOJET, Kirsten spent the prior 12+ years in private equity, investment banking and capital markets predominately at Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan Partners.
Kirsten received a BA, cum laude, from the University of Pennsylvania where she was a Benjamin Franklin Scholar, and an MBA from Stanford University's Graduate School of Business.
CEO, Journey Aviation
Fabian Bello attended the University of Miami, Florida with a Bachelors in Business Administration in preparation for his management career.
Prior to aviation, Mr. Bello came from the logistics industry, working for a globally known worldwide logistics company with 2.7 billion USD in yearly turnover. Throughout his 10 year tenure, he served as Marketing Manager, Project Manager, IT System Implementation Manager, Director of Operations, Business Processes and Quality with his role spanning throughout the Americas Region, making him the youngest Director ever appointed at the time in a company of over 15,000 employees. Mr. Bello was also asked by the International Executive Board to simultaneously serve on the Global Business Process Management Team with the task of implementing processes that would streamline operations while reducing costs, increasing efficiency and ensuring overall quality output.
Since he joined the aviation industry, Mr. Bello has held various positions such as Executive Vice President, and President/CEO of an international division as well as President/CEO of other related aviation companies.
In addition to his extensive business knowledge, Mr. Bello has vast experience working with and uniting a plethora of Worldwide cultures, particularly Hispanic, European, Asian and of Arabic regions. He has an innate ability of bringing and keeping individuals working together in pursuit of a common goal. Getting things done effectively, efficiently and with the buy-in of all related parties is most certainly one of the strongest attributes to his management style.
President, Gama Aviation Group
Tom was appointed President and CEO of Gama Aviation LLC in 2013. Tom started his career in aviation in 1978 in the Commercial Customer Service department of Sikorsky aircraft. From 1982 to 1989 Tom was the Manager of Aircraft Maintenance for a CT based corporate flight department that operated a large group of corporate helicopters and fixed wing Jet aircraft. In 1989 Tom joined what is now Gama Aviation LLC, (formerly Flight Services Group and Gama Charters Inc, respectively) as the Director of Maintenance and has held a number of positions of increased responsibility in the organization up through Executive Vice President of Engineering and Technical Services. In 2012 Tom was appointed as President and in late 2013 as President and CEO of Gama Aviation LLC. Tom is a past member of the Board of Governors of the NBAA Certified Aviation Manager program as well as holding that designation himself. Tom is a long time member of The Wings Cub. Tom has a degree in Aircraft Maintenance Technology and holds Airframe and Powerplant licenses and a private pilot certificate.
President & CEO, Sentient Jet
As the President and CEO of Sentient Jet, Collins is responsible for a $225MM topline business that has seen aggressive growth over the last four years. Under his leadership the company has been able to go through both a digital and business model transformation. This includes re-positioning its brand, integrating a full suite of retail and wholesale technology applications, growing sales nearly $100MM, moving topline revenues 60%, and turning into an EBITDA positive entity. As of 2016 the company has also evolved its exclusive partnership program to include some of the world’s finest consumer brands and organizations.
Sentient is the innovator and inventor of the Jet Card model of flying and disrupted aviation by providing a unique new tool for flyers to access a private aircraft without having to purchase one. Like Uber, Airbnb, WeWork, and a number of other strong “asset-light” companies, Sentient Jet has become a global leader in private aviation by leveraging heavily screened and certified luxury excess capacity in the Private Jet industry. This has been achieved through a unique implementation of aircraft auditing, technology, and data management. What makes the company unique is that Sentient Jet pursued this model long before many of the other consumer asset-light models had been developed.
In 2015 and 2016 Collins spearheaded a significant Digital and Technology Transformation at Sentient Jet. This has included the creation of retail, consumer “touch points” online and through novel mobile applications as well as a brand new supply-side platform for driving further efficiencies in flight time procurement.
Collins has been featured in a number of media outlets as well as public speaking forums. Coverage and visibility includes CNN, CNBC, Forbes, Fox Business News, NBC, the Wall Street Journal and Worth Magazine. In addition, in 2016, Sentient Jet and Collins are featured in a case study for Harvard Business School entitled “Sentient Jet: The Uber of Private Jets”.
Sentient Jet has developed premiere exclusive partnerships with such leading, world class brands and events as Aspen/Snowmass, the Breeders’ Cup, Dean & Deluca, and YPO/WPO. In 2016 Sentient Jet became the first official private aviation partner ever for the Kentucky Derby and Churchill Downs.
With extensive additional experience in software and Internet-related technologies, Collins has helped lead, establish or improve upon a number of prominent, venture-backed technology enterprises.
Collins resides in Needham, Massachusetts with his wife and two children. He received his BA from Union College of Schenectady, NY and a Master’s Degree from the Sloan School of Management at MIT. He is a member of the Young Presidents’ Organization (YPO) and the Wall Street Journal CEO Council.
Profile coming soon.
Head, Corporate Aircraft Finance & Leasing, BMO Harris
Joe DiLallo manages BMO’s highly experienced specialty finance group that focuses exclusively on providing lease and loan financing of fixed-wing corporate/private jets for large corporations, middle market businesses, and ultra-high net worth individuals located throughout the United States and Canada.
Over his 27 year career in corporate aircraft finance and equipment leasing, Mr. DiLallo has built trusted relationships throughout the business aviation industry, including aircraft manufacturers, financiers, broker/dealers, attorneys, appraisers, charter/management companies, advisors, consultants, etc. Prior to joining BMO, Joe worked with several prominent firms, including JPMorgan Chase Bank and GetJets Aviation Consulting.
Mr. DiLallo is a frequent speaker and panelist at top industry conferences and is an active, longstanding member of the National Business Aviation Association and National Aircraft Finance Association. Joe resides in Cleveland, Ohio with his wife and their three children.
|Randolph De Long
Managing Partner, Aeronautical Systems
Randolph M. De Long, ASA, Managing Partner of Aeronautical Systems Inc., possesses broad aviation experience, including jet aircraft valuation consulting, technical inspections and appraisals.
Prior to launching Aeronautical Systems, Randy was Vice President of a large aviation consulting firm, primarily handling technical aircraft inspections, appraisals and future value forecasting. He managed aviation portfolios, performed appraisals, forecasted future values and provided consultation relative to aircraft selection studies, financial analyses, fleet evaluations, contract negotiations, physical aircraft inspections, redelivery services and remarketing strategies.
Other career highlights included serving as the Director of Fleet Planning and Aircraft Purchasing for a national airline, handling macro fleet and investment analyses, technical evaluations and pre-purchase inspections. Responsible for new aircraft delivery acceptances, surplus aircraft leasing and sales, he personally coordinated DC-9, DC-10, B-727, B-737 and B-757 purchases and leases.
Randy also managed introduction of new aircraft into the airline’s fleet and was the on-site technical representative during the manufacturing process. He has held various executive level positions with the Boeing Corporation, with responsibilities ranging from development of technical sales analyses through presentation of specifications and negotiations with customers.
A graduate of Washington State University (B.A. in Business Administration), Randy began his flying career in 1969 and currently is a licensed U.S. commercial pilot, airframe and powerplant mechanic and has completed numerous post-graduate courses within the aviation and appraisal disciplines. He is a lecturer and prolific author of aviation technical and appraisal reports and one of a few select senior aircraft appraisers designated by the American Society of Appraisers.
President, Denison Yacht Sales
Bob Denison literally grew up in the yachting industry in Fort Lauderdale, FL. Bob's grandfather, Frank Denison, and father, Kit Denison founded Broward Marine, and Denison Marine, respectively. Thanks to this great heritage, Bob has experienced nearly every level of the yachting experience, from working as a laborer at the yard to spending a weekend on a megayacht.
After graduating from the University of Miami with a degree in Business Management, Bob began working with two visionary entrepreneurs in the e-commerce and aerospace fields. These early work experiences helped shape Bob's knowledge of internet marketing and creative management strategies.
In 2002 Bob assumed all management roles of his father's brokerage company, Denison Yacht Sales. Since that time Bob has assisted in the steady growth of the company to dozens of offices in the U.S. and Caribbean and new boat representation, including Hatteras and Beneteau.
Founder & CEO, Wheels Up
Kenny Dichter is Founder and CEO of Wheels Up, the revolutionary membership-based private aviation company that minimizes the upfront investment needed to fly privately. the company provides members with unmatched accessibility and flexibility through its innovative business model and diverse fleet. Wheels Up offers the only scalable total private aviation solution in the marketplace, ranging from the King Air 350i to the Global 6000, through partnerships with industry leaders such as Beechcraft, Cessna, Heliflite, JetSuite, Jet Aviation and VistaJet.
Previously, Dichter founded Marquis Jet in 2001 and introduced the first ever fractional jet card program, which revitalized and democratized and private aviation industry. Led by Dichter, Marquis Jet generated over $4 billion in revenue, culminating in its sale to Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway’s NetJets in 2010. At that time, Dtchter was named Vice Chairman of NetJets.
An entrepreneur at heart, with a sociology major from the University of Wisconsin, Dichter is a self-proclaimed “man of the people”. Since his youth, he has been known for being a trend spotter and a trendsetter, and has always had an innate knack for branding, marketing, public relations and advertising. Dichter’s successes prove the he can apply these skills to a variety of industries. As always, Dichter has his eye on early-stage businesses where he sees potential for hype growth. He has an active role and has invested in Juice Press, a Manhattan-based, multi-location, grab-and-go organic, raw food and juice company; SportsYapper, a global communications platform for talking sports; CYC, which offers an exhilarating, beat-based, 45 minute ride that activates the whole body, the whole time; and Cirrus, a fitness company that customizes premium exercise equipment.
Founder, Aircraft Cost Calculator
After buying and selling corporate aircraft professionally for eight years, I founded Aircraft Cost Calculator, LLC (ACC) in August 2011 to address a specific industry need. At the time, there was no simple application on the market that could perform a complete aircraft ownership analysis inclusive of owner hours, charter hour contributions, loan and capital cost considerations, residual value, trip cost calculations, and a host of other factors. I created ACC to accomplish these tasks quickly, first as PC-based software and then as a cloud-based solution. Today, Aircraft Cost Calculator is a fully dynamic web app that can be accessed from any device and perform high-level budgeting analysis in a matter of minutes, not hours or days.
In March 2017, Sandhills Publishing (which owns Controller.com) bought an equity position in ACC. This has proven to be an ideal partnership, as Controller.com is recognized as the leader in aviation listings throughout the world. This partnership allows ACC to incorporate actual serial-number-specific cost data points from the Controller.com database and thereby provide ACC customers with the most comprehensive real-world aircraft data available.
I am a long-time pilot and have been involved in corporate aviation for my entire adult life. I earned my private pilot's license while attending Marquette University, where I earned a bachelor's degree in business marketing. I hold private, commercial, multi-engine, and instrument ratings from Flight Safety International. After spending five years as sales and acquisition director at General Aviation Services, LLC, I founded Fairway Aviation Group in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where I remain as president. Fairway Aviation Group specializes in the buying and selling of business aircraft for discriminating clients worldwide.
President, Executive Jet Management
Under Marc’s executive leadership, EJM focuses on improving and expanding its aircraft management operations and charter services while providing superior customer service to private aviation clients around the world.
Marc served EJM in a variety of roles since joining EJM in 2005 including director of subcontract services, vice president of charter services, and senior vice president of charter sales and marketing prior to being appointed President and CEO in January 2016. Under Marc’s leadership, EJM continues to grow signi cantly through purposeful dedication to the vision of being the safest, most customer-focused, and proactive company in private aviation. Marc’s rigorous focus on exceptional customer experience and “ nding a way to say yes” has been instrumental in growing EJM’s charter revenues, expanding the managed aircraft eet, and investing in EJM’s team and their capabilities.
Receiving a bachelor of science in aeronautical engineering from the U.S. Naval Academy, and as a graduate of the U.S. Navy Test Pilot School, Marc went on to serve 16 years in the U.S. Navy as a ghter pilot, test pilot, and in numerous leadership positions within various Navy units. His military career included combat deployments to the Persian Gulf on board the USS Carl Vinson and USS John F. Kennedy in support of military operations including Operations Southern Watch, Desert Fox, Iraqi Freedom, and Enduring Freedom. Marc has logged more than 2,000 ight hours in 22 types of airplanes and helicopters, 350+ carrier landings, and also holds commercial and multi-engine instrument ratings.
Managing Partner, Guardian Jet
As a veteran aviation sales executive, Don Dwyer is a frequent guest speaker for several business aviation organizations and publications. He is particularly regarded for applying his extensive expertise and thought leadership on a variety of topics, including aircraft finance, asset management, fleet planning and aircraft sales.
In 2010, after 22 years of serving as a global aviation sales executive for Hawker Beechcraft, Don left the corporate world to join his brother, Mike Dwyer, as managing partner of Guardian Jet. Since then, the Dwyer brothers have doubled the reputable firm’s penetration of the Fortune 100 from 15 percent to nearly 35 percent.
Today Guardian Jet is one of the top three aircraft brokerage and consulting firms in the world. At its core, the firm is an aircraft market research firm, and the Dwyer’s continue to invest in innovative cloud-based technology solutions to help their sophisticated corporate aviation and high-net-worth clients make more informed decisions as it relates to asset management and the buying and selling of aircraft.
Don began his career in aircraft sales at Mooney International and later joined Hawker Beechcraft as a regional sales director. While there, he advanced through the executive ranks to ultimately serve as Vice President, Global Sales. In that role, Don led Hawker Beechcraft’s resale organization, managing between $200 million and $400 million in resale inventory. With responsibility for a global team of direct sales VPs, managers and salespeople—and more that $2 billion in company revenue—Don also oversaw the company’s network of dealers located around the world.
In addition to his management experience, Don is a 4,500-hour commercial pilot and certified flight instructor. In 2017, he will retire as a 15-year board member of Challenge Aspen, a world-renowned organization devoted to recreational therapy for all types of disabled persons.
A member of the National Business Aviation Association and the National Aircraft Resale Association, Don is also an avid sailor and spends his downtime racing with his extended family on their sailboat, appropriately named the J/109 Guardian J.
Brand Marketing, Boeing Business Jets
Drew Gough is part of the marketing team at Boeing Business Jets (BBJ), a division of The Boeing Company dedicated to VIP and Head of State customers. Since its founding 21 years ago BBJ has sold over 250 airplanes for private, corporate and government applications.
Drew leads the development of BBJ marketing collateral across print, digital and in person experiences. He also tracks the pre-owned business jetliner market and the resulting analyses have been presented at industry events, tradeshows and financial institutions around the world.
Prior to joining Boeing Business Jets Drew worked in multiple functions of Boeing’s Satellite and Space Systems division including Contracts, Pricing, Material Management and New Business Capture. In addition, he is a graduate of Boeing’s two year leadership development program for high potential employees. Drew received a BA, summa cum laude, from Gonzaga University in Business Administration with a concentration in Marketing.
Shareholder, Vedder Price
Edward Gross has 30 years of experience representing bank-affiliated and large, independent equipment financing companies in all aspects of equipment finance transactions, including documenting, structuring, negotiating, syndicating and enforcing these transactions.
Edward is considered an industry leader in business aircraft and helicopter finance. These transactions vary in structure and include tax and non-tax lease, operating lease and secured loan financing of managed and /or chartered aircraft, fleet aircraft and helicopters operated in various service capacities and engine pools, aircraft operated under fractional and “pay card” arrangements and progress payment, completion and other multi-funding structures. Clients include market-leading aircraft and helicopter financing providers, investors or operating lessors, as well as large publicly or privately held businesses, governmental entities or high-net-worth individual users. Many of these transactions involve foreign registered aircraft.
Senior Vice President, AirSure Limited
Todd Guelich has been with AirSure Limited for 31 years having being initiated in the aviation insurance industry at USAIG. He worked for them as an underwriter in Dallas for his first five years out of college. A pilot since 1973 he received his education from the U.S. Naval Academy and University of Kentucky. He is also an active member of NBAA, IFBOA, HAI and NATA. He has served on the NATA’s Air Charter Committee since 1992 and participates in lobbying congress on general aviation regulatory issues.
Todd believes that to understand the efficient placement of insurance products, you have to observe the operators and directly participate in the decision process when addressing risk through safety initiatives, contractual or waiver deferrals. For those who know him, his on-site operator visitation schedule often reaches 100 days per year. His participation includes the policy direction for all facets of flight (from 121 to 135) and ground servicing facilities throughout North America and dozens of international locations. Experienced in the insurance placement of non-U.S. citizen trustors, trustees and beneficiaries, Todd frequently assists in the multiple interpretation issues evoked by the interacting contractual relationships required by the variable parties.
Todd is the father of three teenagers which may also help explain his travel schedule.
Vice President & General Manager, Jet Aviation
Don is the Vice President and General Manager of Jet Aviation Flight Services, the group's aircraft management and charter division for The Americas. Don has held various managerial positions within the organization serving as Gulfstream captain, chief pilot and most recently as Vice President of Flight Operations. After a career as a U.S. Navy pilot, Don flew more than 2,000 hours as a GII/GIII captain. He then served as interim deputy director of New World Jet Corporation before joining Jet Aviation as a GIV chief pilot. He has more than 7,100 hours of flight time. Don serves on the National Aviation Transportation Association (NATA) Air Charter Committee (2011-present).
Founding Partner, Robert Allen Law
Robert N. (“Bob”) Allen, Jr., is the senior partner of Robert Allen Law, which focuses a significant part of its practice on the yacht industry. With offices in Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Palm Beach, and New York City, its legal team represents buyers, sellers, manufacturers, dealers, brokerages, and banks, with respect to superyachts throughout the world.
He serves as principal outside legal advisor to the International Yacht Brokers Association (“IYBA,” formerly FYBA) and was the primary drafter of the IYBA Purchase and Sale and Listing Agreements, which have become the standard industry forms in the U.S. and are increasingly used in cross-border transactions. His firm also serves as principal legal advisor to two of the largest yacht manufacturing groups in the world, with respect to their operations in the U.S. and the Americas.
He is contributor to Compass, the IYBA’s periodical publication, and a regular speaker at the IYBA’s seminars on legal issues related to the purchase and sale of yachts.
Bob received his law degree from the University of Notre Dame and his bachelor’s degree in International Relations from New College. He is fluent in Spanish. He is married and has a 5-year old son.
Shareholder, Vedder Price
David M. Hernandez is a Shareholder at Vedder Price and a member of the firm's Global Transportation Finance team, whose performance led Vedder Price to be named Aviation 100 Law Firm of the Year 2015. In 2016, David was ranked Band 1 in Private Aircraft (Global-wide) in Chambers High Net Worth, which recognizes the world’s leading high net worth advisers.
David has considerable experience assisting clients with aircraft transactions, complex government investigations, aircraft, air carrier and part certifications, and enforcement matters (FAA and DOT violations, export controls, hazardous materials and drug/alcohol testing). He frequently advises clients on aircraft purchase/sale agreements, leases, fractional program documents, aircraft management agreements, aircraft use policies, cross-border transactions, personal use of company aircraft and regulatory (FAA, SEC and IRS) compliance. Mr. Hernandez represents a wide variety of clients, including public and private corporations, aerospace manufacturers and suppliers, airlines, defense contractors, airports, corporate flight departments, charter operators and high-net-worth individuals. Mr. Hernandez is also an active member of the National Business Aviation Association Tax Committee and Regulatory Issues Advisory Group.
Prior to joining Vedder Price, David was a prosecutor at the FAA as well as an honors attorney for the U.S. Department of Transportation. He also served in the Office of the Counsel to the President during the Clinton administration and was a Captain in the U.S. Air Force.
President, Duncan Aviation
As President and CEO, Aaron C. Hilkemann provides strategic leadership and direction to Duncan Aviation, Inc. to ensure future development and growth for the enterprise.
Aaron joined Duncan Aviation in 1996 as Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer. In 1997, he was appointed President. Prior to joining Duncan Aviation, Aaron was Vice President and Director of Financial Operations for FirsTier Financial, Inc. His background includes eight years of public accounting experience with KPMG Peat Marwick where he served as a Senior Audit Manager and concentrated in the areas of manufacturing, construction and banking industries.
Aaron is past Chairman and a current member of the Board of Directors of GAMA (General Aviation Manufacturers Association). He has also served as Past Chairman of the AMAC (Associate Member Advisory Council) of NBAA and the NBAA Board of Directors.
Aaron and his wife, Jennifer, have a blended family of seven children, two boys and five girls. Aaron is active in hiking, hunting, fishing, biking and most recently has become a bee keeper.
President, Par Avion Ltd
Janine Iannarelli is the founder and President of Par Avion Ltd., an international aircraft brokerage firm, established in Houston in 1997. Par Avion specializes in the exclusive representation and acquisition of business aircraft whose area of expertise lends itself to a variety of small, super midsize and large cabin jets. An industry veteran, Ms. Iannarelli has more than 30 years of business aviation experience and 400+ transactions to her credit having represented a diverse group of corporations and private individuals worldwide. Ms. Iannarelli has extensive experience in cross-border transactions, with nearly 90% of Par Avion’s business to date concentrated in this area of specialization.
Iannarelli is a member of the National Business Aviation Association; the European Business Aviation Association where she serves as the Chair of the Associate Member’s Sales & Acquisition committee; Women in Aviation, International, and the American Marketing Association. In 2014, Iannarelli was appointed to the Texas Aerospace and Aviation Advisory Committee by Governor Perry and was made presiding officer by Governor Abbott in 2016. In 2016 Iannarelli was one of three inductees into the Aviation Hall of Fame of New Jersey and named a “Women on the Move” by the Texas Executive Women organization. As a sought out mentor and inspirational advisor, Iannarelli is a frequent guest lecturer for youth groups and women’s organizations. She is a passionate advocate and supporter of those charities benefitting children and animals.
A native of Fair Lawn, New Jersey and a long-time resident of Houston, Iannarelli graduated from Montclair State University in 1983 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration.
Alireza graduated from Boston University School of Management with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and has also attended post-graduate workshops in Business Management at Harvard University. Following graduation, Alireza joined the Republic National Bank of New York in New York City as a Trader. He was rapidly promoted to Lead Trader for the foreign exchange desk reporting to the Head Trader until he left to join The M Group. While there, he continued working as a Foreign Exchange Trader, specializing in Structured Finance Currency Derivatives. In 1992, he founded Freestream Aircraft Limited, where he continues as Director. Freestream Aircraft Limited is a Multi Faceted Aviation Company.
President & CEO, Asset Insight
Anthony (“Tony”) Kioussis became President and CEO of Asset Insight, LLC in April 2016, when Asset Insight, Inc., a company he founded, merged with SAI Valuations, LLC. Asset Insight provides valuations, audits, analytics, and consulting services to the aviation industry, and has developed a proprietary Asset Grading System Process resulting in a uniform methodology for evaluating and grading an aircraft’s maintenance condition.
Prior to Asset Insight, he served as VP, Strategic Marketing with GE Capital’s Corporate Aircraft Finance group, joining GE after serving as VP – Aircraft Sales for Jet Aviation Business Jets, Inc.
Following a ten-year tenure with British Aerospace, Inc., where he became VP – Sales, for JSX Capital, the company’s aircraft remarketing subsidiary, Tony founded The K Group, Ltd., providing Marketing, Sales, and Financial Services consulting to companies headquartered in the Americas and Europe. He later joined Jet Support Services, Inc., as Sales Director – Airframe Programs, and developed “Tip-to-Tail”, JSSI’s Airframe Hourly Cost Maintenance Program.
Tony is a published author and active industry association member, serving as the current Board Secretary for the National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA), past Chairman of the Products and Services Member Council for the National Aircraft Resale Association (NARA), and as a Member of the Transportation Research Board’s (TRB) Business Aviation Subcommittee.
He holds a Bachelor of Science Degree from Florida Institute of Technology’s College of Aeronautics, has completed graduate studies at New York’s Pace University toward a MBA in Finance, and is a licensed pilot.
Business Development & Commercial Services, Pratt & Whitney Canada
Satheeshkumar (Kumar) Kumarasingam was named as Vice President, Business Development & Commercial Services in 2017.
In this role, Kumar will be responsible for P&WC’s next transformation in product and service strategy, leveraging the market knowledge and understanding of trends and factors that impact the market, leading the business-development teams that are focused on redefining the business model and expanding our offerings and growth in non-traditional markets and countries. In this combined role, he will continue to provide leadership and direction to the commercial team in order to drive excellence and profitability in Marketing and the front-line Customer Service organizations.
Previously as Vice President, Commercial Services, he was responsible for supporting operators world-wide to achieve the most cost-effective life-cycle ownership via a fully tailored suite of products and offerings while maximizing long-term supportability. He also led the strategic customer-satisfaction initiatives to simplify, standardize and enhance the customer experience.
Mr. Kumarasingam joined P&WC in 1995 as a mechanical design engineer following his graduation. He assumed positions of increasing responsibility in the Engineering, Quality, Operations, Marketing and Customer Service organizations.
Mr. Kumarasingam earned a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from McGill University in 1995.
Chief Operating Officer, Global Jet Capital
Dave has over 35 years of finance industry experience with GE, having held roles with responsibility in sales, risk management, business development and general management. Dave spent 22 of his years with GE dedicated to corporate aviation, with the last 15 years leading the company’s financing activity in the sector as president of GE Capital, Corporate Aircraft. He joined Global Jet Capital December 2015 as the Chief Operating Officer. As COO, he is responsible for all commercial customer facing activities including new business originations, underwriting, off lease aircraft redeployment, overall portfolio management and customer service. With a lengthy track record in the sector, Dave is highly respected as a leader in corporate aviation and has served on the NBAA Associate Member Advisory Council.
Partner, Lapayowker Jet Counsel
Lapayowker Jet Counsel, P.A. devotes its law practice to corporate aircraft transactions. We counsel corporate and individual clients, foreign and domestic, on issues relating to the acquisition, leasing, registration and financing of new and pre-owned jet aircraft (including fractional aircraft). We counsel on a wide variety of aviation matters, including implementing tax efficient structures, related FAA and DOT regulatory matters, regulatory evaluation of operations, aircraft management arrangements, personal use issues and compensation-related SEC issues in connection with the use of business aircraft by public companies. We have excellent working relationships with major aircraft manufacturers which facilitates our ability to get transactions accomplished efficiently.
Stewart is past-Chair of the National Business Aviation Association’s Tax and Regulatory Committee, past Chair of its Aircraft Transactions Working Group, past Vice-Chair of its Regulatory Working Group, and a member of the Aviation Law Committee of The Florida Bar.
Stewart has written articles and editorials, has been quoted in the press, cited to by a federal appellate court and has lectured on various topics in business aviation. He is devoted to helping aircraft owners and operators find solutions to challenges that they face on a daily basis. He hosts an internet radio show PlaneTalkRadio and has developed software applications including Speed-Offer® and Trip-Speed®.
The firm is committed to supporting a variety of charitable causes, including the Corporate Angel Network, Debbies Dream Foundation Curing Stomach Cancer, an organization devoted to curing a rare form of stomach cancer, and Stewart annually does stand-up comedy at the Improv at the Hard Rock in Hollywood, Florida as part of the Debbies Dream Foundation Night of Laughter. In April 2016, he was recognized as Humanitarian of the Year by the Board of Directors of Debbies Dream Foundation Curing Stomach Cancer.
Founder & CEO, EVOLUX SKYSHARE
Raymond B. Leavitt IV is an aviation enthusiast and technology entrepreneur who set out to revolutionize private regional air travel upon returning to Business School at Florida Atlantic University (FAU) from a 2005 Summer Internship with Standard Chartered Bank in Singapore. Ray became a student of the air charter industry while coordinating private flights for Blue Star Jets, and simultaneously spending time at FAU developing business plans for EvoLux Transportation’s per-seat on-demand helicopter reservation platform.
In 2006, Ray became a Technology Business Incubator tenant in the Research Park at FAU and founded EvoLux Transportation, LLC in March of 2007. Between 2007-2009 Ray worked alongside computer science and aerospace engineers from Georgia Tech, Boeing, Embry-Riddle, and FAU, assimilating data and understanding from multiple aerospace research projects to create the NextGeneration Non-Interfering Vertiport Operating System (NG-NIVOS). Through this research, Ray discovered that while the highly underutilized helicopter charter industry faced plenty of issues and challenges, this plan to digitize availability of regional fleets, partner with helicopter friendly destinations, and make helicopter charter easier to access was a feasible alternative mode of transport for travelers in congested regions and was an exciting and viable business opportunity in a very under-serviced niche. That’s when Ray shifted away from infrastructure research grant writing and began software development of EvoLux’s first consumer facing helicopter reservation prototype, which first went live in August of 2011. In parallel to incubating EvoLux, Ray consulted for the air-taxi startup DayJet Technologies and served as an Entrepreneur-in-Residence and Program Manager for the Enterprise Development Corporation of South Florida, assisting 15 technology business startups a year with business planning, product development, go-to-market strategies, and investor pitch coaching. Additionally, Ray helped in cultivating South Florida’s start-up ecosystem by hosting Startup Weekends, Technology Meet-ups, connecting University with Industry while serving on multiple industry advisory boards, as well as supporting the New World Angels with deal flow and due diligence efforts on new investment opportunities.
In 2013, Ray and his EvoLux team won Sikorsky Innovations' Global Entrepreneurial Challenge for their FAA Part-135 compliant approach to combining social networks, the shared economy, and self-aggregation principles to allow for per-seat on demand air charter. This temporarily moved the company from Boca Raton, FL to the Stamford Innovation Center in Connecticut where the team worked alongside Sikorsky Innovations for a few years. Since then, the EvoLux App has expanded to 10 major US regions nationwide, is the official helicopter reservation system for Vertiport Chicago, and is averaging 3 flight reservations a day with approximately 250 helicopters and 120 fixed wing aircraft in the US charter marketplace. Ray has since returned to reside in Ft. Lauderdale, FL, where he spends weekends with his 6 year old daughter and continues to work with his team to grow EvoLux Transportation.
Shareholder, Alley, Maass, Rogers & Lindsay
Robb Maass is a shareholder and president of Alley, Maass, Rogers & Lindsay, P.A., a full-service law firm with offices in Palm Beach, Florida. He holds an A.B. from Princeton University and a J.D. from Yale Law School. Robb heads the firm's Maritime Department, which specializes in yacht transactions. He and the other lawyers in his department represent a broad spectrum of the marine industry, including yacht owners, crew, manufacturers, dealers, brokers, and vendors. He was recently reappointed as a director of the Maritime Authority of the Cayman Islands, which includes the Cayman Islands Shipping Registry.
Executive Vice President and General Counsel, AIC Title Service
Bruce L. Marshall joined AIC Title Service as its Executive Vice President and General Counsel in February 2014, helping ensure that AIC’s clients and leadership are protected as they move through unprecedented FAA and industry changes. Bruce was recognized in the November 2013 issue of D CEO Magazine as one of Dallas-Fort Worth’s top corporate attorneys following his win as Outstanding General Counsel or Chief Legal Officer in the Small Legal Department category at the Association of Corporate Counsel and D CEO’s 2013 Corporate Counsel Awards. Individually a 2011 winner of the General Counsel Forum’s Magna Stella Award in the Small Legal Department category and finalist in the Major Litigation category, Bruce and his team also won Texas Lawyer’s 2013 Legal Department of the Year in the Diversity and Quality of Life category. With over 20 years’ experience in aviation legal matters, specializing in contracts, regulations, and litigation, he previously served as Senior Director and Division General Counsel of Bombardier’s Flexjet fractional aircraft ownership program where he strategically managed two cases challenging state and federal taxes that affected the entire fractional aircraft ownership industry and resulted in the refund of millions of dollars of paid taxes.
Prior to joining Flexjet, Bruce served as corporate counsel and business manager for a charter management company with both Part 135 on-demand air cargo and passenger operations, served as vice president and legal officer for a major financial institution in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and in private practice, he represented banks, construction companies, transportation companies, and employee benefits funds in commercial litigation matters. Bruce graduated from Purdue University and holds a Juris Doctorate degree from the Michigan State University College of Law. He serves as a frequent speaker or panelist at aviation industry events.
President, Hawkeye Aircraft
Mike McCracken is a native of Iowa and a graduate of the University of Iowa. He has been in aviation since 1976 and has flight instructed, flown night freight, charter, and corporate. He is now President of Hawkeye Aircraft Acquisitions, his own aviation acquisition and consulting company.
He was worked on the sell side as a regional director for two major aircraft manufacturers for 28 years providing a unique perspective on the appraisal, acquisition and consulting side of the business. Working with and observing everything from first time buyers to Fortune 50 flight departments has provided valuable insights into the best practices for flight departments and the aircraft evaluation and purchase process.
As a current 6500+ hour Airline Transport Pilot with three aircraft type ratings and aircraft owner his experience brings a practical versus theoretical approach to evaluating an aircraft. He has worked with all of the major aircraft manufacturers. Mike is an accredited American Society of Appraisers Senior Aircraft Appraiser.
HAA was created because we felt there should be an easier and more productive method to evaluate complex aviation solutions. We challenge convention by viewing the world differently and applying that mindset to our applications to identify the best solution for our clients.
Managing Partner, Shearwater Aero Capital
Chris Miller has over 25 years of experience in aviation and human capital. Prior to Shearwater, he oversaw Guggenheim Partners’ Business Aircraft Investment (BAI) Group. The BAI Group provided capital solutions to the business aviation industry, specifically asset based lending on medium to large sized business aircraft. In recent years, Mr. Miller’s aircraft transactions and financings have been focused in Europe, emerging Europe, Asia, the Middle East, and Africa.
Prior to Guggenheim, Chris ran the US Division of a UK based performance management consultancy that worked with management teams of both small and large organizations on the execution of their strategies. Notable projects include working with a private equity group to form a venture to fly cargo into geopolitically unstable regions of the world as well as working with large defense contractors to help fulfill urgent need requests from US military forces based in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Before entering the business world, Chris served in the United States Marine Corps, as an F/A-18 pilot, Aircraft Maintenance Officer and Aviation Safety Officer. He is a graduate of the U.S. Navy & Marine Corps School of Aviation Safety and currently holds a commercial pilot rating. He is an accredited “Senior Aircraft Appraiser” with the American Society of Appraisers (ASA) and serves on its Investment Committee. He is also the President of the National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA). Mr. Miller received a BA from Denison University and an MBA from Columbia University.
Co-founder & President, Partners in Aviation
Mark co-founded Partners in Aviation (PIA) in 2016 after spending 34 years successfully representing new Beechcraft products for the OEM in the Chicago area. Three-plus decades of selling business aircraft to companies and individuals, many of whom were dealing with cost-justification issues based on low utilization, was the genesis of the company
PIA, with the support of its best-in-industry strategic partners and advisors, has systematically addressed the pitfalls typical to DIY partnerships. The result is PIA Co-Ownership - a new and comprehensive solution for operators flying less than 200 hrs per year - that effectively cuts the net cost of ownership in half while providing aircraft access rivaling sole ownership.
Mark has positioned PIA to work in partnership with our industry’s OEMs, sales organizations, management companies and professional services firms, enabling clients to step up to their ideal new or late-model aircraft. PIA’s core service is matchmaking — locating, vetting and matching compatible in-region co-owners – and providing the structure that allows co-ownership to be successful.
Mark is an ATP and type-rated pilot with over 4.000 hours of flight time. He holds a bachelor’s degree in business/finance from the University of Illinois. During the past 20 years, he sold more new King Airs than anyone, worldwide.
Head of Finance, PNC Aviation Finance
Alex is the Head of PNC Aviation Finance, the leading financier of business aircraft in the United States. Prior to taking his role as Head of Aviation Finance, Alex was Chief Operating Officer of Corporate & Institutional Banking, with responsibility for Data Infrastructure and Data Quality, CRM and Sales Reporting, Analytics and Strategy, Business Communications, Environmental and Social Risk Management, and Client and Employee Experience. Alex joined PNC in July 2014 after spending 8 years at Goldman Sachs in Investment Banking and Firmwide Strategy. Alex graduated from Duke University in 2006 with an A.B. in Public Policy.
Director of Global Business Development, ViaSat
Profile coming soon.
Founder, Chairman & CEO, JetSmarter
Awarded Forbes 30 Under 30 in Consumer Technology and South Florida’s Top Working Professional by the Sun Sentinel, Sergey is always seeking out ways to innovate industries. He co-founded two IT projects prior to JetSmarter: an online chat system for website customer service and a distance-learning platform for Russian speaking educational institutions. He served as a board advisor to a private jet operator based in South Florida who at the time had the worlds largest on-demand Gulfstream charter fleet. Has traveled privately for business and leisure with friends and family prior to JetSmarter, and really hated the brick and mortar approach to booking charter. Frustrated with this experience, he began to notice mobile marketplaces were becoming popular, and decided this is the way private aircraft should be booked. And bingo the idea for JetSmarter was born…
So Sergey got his development team together from previous projects, invested his own capital and started planning the creation of an app for people to use to order flights with top rated private jet operators.
They built the first beta-version of the JetSmarter App in August 2012, which was used by a closed group of people. Once he realized they were on to something, he decided to turn this into a full-fledged business. After raising more money and collaborated with hundreds of vendors and partners, the JetSmarter App was officially born in March 2013, making Sergey the Founder and CEO of one of the world’s most innovative technologies to date.
Sergey’s vision along with his recruitment of an expert technology, management and advisory team, who are credited with executing successful projects for NASA, Nokia, Microsoft, Mercedes Benz, BMW and a combined experience of over 100 years in private air travel, gave birth to the groundbreaking app that JetSmarter is today.
Co-founder & Managing Partner, North Star Group
Co-founder and Managing Partner for Northstar Group, a boutique executive search firm based in Wilmington, NC, Craig is focused on recruiting senior level leadership, sales and operations executives for some of the most prominent companies in the aviation and aerospace industry. Clients include well known aircraft OEM’s, aircraft operators, leasing / financial organizations, and Maintenance / Repair / Overhaul (MRO) providers. Since 2009 he has personally concluded more than 200 executive level searches in a variety of disciplines.
Craig’s professional career started out with a passion for airplanes. After eight years’ experience as a decorated Naval Flight Officer – with more than 100 combat missions, 2,000 hours of flight time and 325 aircraft carrier landings – he sought challenges in business aviation where he spent more than seven years in sales with both Gulfstream Aircraft and Bombardier Business Aircraft.
During his tenure at Gulfstream, Craig helped drive sales efforts throughout the Middle East and Sub Saharan Africa regions and played significant roles in securing sales in Algeria, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates. From there he moved over to Gulfstream’s newly created “Government and Special Missions” division where he was instrumental helping the company establish sales campaigns for head-of-state and militarized aircraft throughout the world including programs in the U.K, Australia, Israel, Sweden, and Denmark. He also helped to secure Gulfstream’s largest sale ever to the US Government which included firm orders for 37 Gulfstream V’s under the VC-X competition.
President & CEO, Mente Group
Brian Proctor is a founder and President of Mente Group, LLC and has been serving private aviation clients for 10 years. Having been involved in over $3.5 billion in aircraft transactions and over $5 billion in aviation business planning, Brian’s experience is sought by corporations and individuals, worldwide.
After serving for six years in the US Army as an infantry Ranger and intelligence officer, Brian left the military to pursue a career in the private sector. After working at Transamerica Corporation, Mr. Proctor served as consultant, COO and President of CAAP and later Leading Edge.
Brian serves on several industry boards and is involved with the Frontiers of Flight Museum in Dallas. He holds a BA degree in International Studies in Politics and Diplomacy from the University of Richmond and an MBA from Southern Methodist University.
Analyst/Vice President, Citi Private Bank
Jon Raviv covers US Aerospace & Defense for Citigroup. He was recognized in 2016 and 2017 as a Rising Star by Institutional Investor magazine. Before joining Citi in 2010, Jon worked at The Cohen Group, a DC-based consultancy headed by former Secretary of Defense William Cohen where he helped corporate clients with domestic and international market entry strategies. Prior to that, he was at the investment banking division of Lehman Brothers/Barclays Capital where he worked on structured product origination. Jon holds an MA in Strategic Studies and Economics from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS), and a BA in International Relations from Johns Hopkins University.
Director of Marketing Analysis, Rolls-Royce North America
Dr Dean Roberts is an expert strategist and author on the civil aircraft and engine industry with thirty-five years of experience at Rolls-Royce. His specialty is the business aircraft market. His career spans roles within marketing, sales, marketing, corporate development and engineering departments.
Today, his expertise is used to support the strategy development of business aviation at Rolls-Royce. He provides analytics support, market studies and recommendations on the current market scene and also forecasts the twenty-year market. He also advises the CorporateCare® aftermarket sales team on industry trends and developments.
Prior to his current role in the US he worked in the Company HQ Corporate Development department in the UK. While there he was involved in strategic analyses, competitor analysis, and prepared presentations for the Board on strategic issues.
Dean had his book entitled Entering the Civil Aircraft Industry: Business realities at the Technological Frontier published in February 2017. He is a Visiting Lecturer at the University of Virginia where he presents a course on the global aerospace industry at the McIntire School of Commerce. Dean is an invited committee member of the Transport Research Board of The National Academies for General Aviation.
Founder & CEO, Aviation Portfolio
Profile coming soon.
Product Manager, Jet Support Services, Inc. (JSSI)
Charlie Rubinowicz is a Product Manager at Jet Support Services, Inc. headquartered in Chicago, IL. Charlie is responsible for managing JSSI’s Advisory Services and is the Director of the Asset Monitoring Platform. He is a recent graduate of University of Miami with a degree in Finance and Economics. His primary areas of focus within his discipline were math and financial modeling. He has 3 years of business aviation experience all with JSSI in the development and implementation of new areas of business. Some of his key areas of focus within JSSI’s development has been in Aircraft Acquisitions, Parts Sales, and Global Aircraft Inspections.
The Advisory Services department of JSSI utilizes the current Technical Advisor team of JSSI located worldwide to support clients for inspections, event management, and appraisals of aircraft. Within this department Charlie manages, writes and reviews all services requests.
Within JSSI Charlie creates and writes four times a year the JSSI Quarterly Flight Hour Index which looks at global business aviation travel and how it relates to economic data and happenings. This report has been produced since 2008 and is one of the most reliable sources of flight hour data trends and analysis.
He currently is in the process of getting his ASA designation. He currently hold his certificate in IS-BAO fundamentals.
CEO & Attorney at Law, OPMAS
Lasse Rungholm is an aviation lawyer (L) specializing in EU importation and all matters related to EU VAT, duty and aircraft. After graduating in 1993 Lasse focused on Transportation law and spent 6 months in Norway studying maritime law at the Nordic Institute of Maritime Law.
Establishing OPMAS in the early 90's Lasse has gained a lot of expertise in the area of EU importation, customs duty and Value Added Tax, the VAT. As a member of NBAA and EBAA Lasse has been a panelist at numerous different conferences and is a well-known speaker. Articles include review of court cases and new legislation some of which can be found on the OPMAS website.
Lasse maintains a relationship with DELACOUR, which is one of the largest law firms in Denmark. He still handles a few select aviation cases every year before the courts.
Lasse is also a professional pilot with both EASA and FAA ATPLs with multiengine land- and seaplane ratings. He is rated on Twin Otters on floats, the L-29, ATR42/72s and Citation II 550 series and flies them regularly.
Cyrus Sigari soloed at age 16, earned private pilot certification at age 17, commercial pilot and flight instructor certification at age 18, and airline transport pilot certification at age 23. He holds multiple single-pilot jet type ratings and are rated in the Boeing 747-400. Cyrus graduated from Purdue University where he studied Aeronautical Engineering. He has turned his passion of flight into a business that has helped hundreds of individuals and companies with the world of jet ownership.
Prior to co-founding jetAVIVA, Cyrus served as a principal engineer for Eclipse Aviation during the initial development of the Eclipse 500. After fulfilling his engineering commitments, Cyrus transitioned to sales and sold 50 Eclipse 500s in a one-year period. Outside of his direct efforts at jetAVIVA, Cyrus holds the position of Very Light Jet Editor for Plane & Pilot and Pilot Journal magazines, has been published in Twin & Turbine magazine, and authors Light Jet Pre-Owned market report for Aviation International News. Cyrus is a founding member of the Citation Jet Pilots Owners group and Eclipse 500 Owners Club. He is trilingual in English, Spanish, and Farsi.
Managing Director, Aviation/Marine Finance, Republic Bank
Jim joined First Republic Bank in March 2006 in his current position as Managing Director of Aviation & Marine Finance. Since joining, Jim has built a team that has originated, closed, and funded over half a ($US) billion in aviation and marine secured transactions for First Republic Bank’s high net worth clients. Because of the focus on understanding the client’s business and alternative asset categories, Jim and his team customize the transactions that suit their clients’ specific needs.
Prior to joining First Republic Bank, he was a regional manager for Bank of America Equipment Finance and Leasing where he managed team of 14 professionals and support staff located throughout the Western United States. While at Bank of America, he worked on a variety of aviation finance transactions for its commercial airline and corporate clients. Jim is a pilot who began flying aircraft in high school. He graduated from Boston University where he earned his Bachelor of Science in Finance.
Staff Vice President, Rockwell Collins
David Stanley leads strategy and business development for Rockwell Collins ARINCDirect, a division focused on delivering premium flight services and cabin connectivity solutions to business and government operators.
With a passion for aviation and communications, David has extensive experience in cabin connectivity solutions. He has been part of its evolution from the first 64kbit/s satcom installations into the ever more complex onboard networks and cabin management systems that are now an integral part of our connected world.
David began his aviation career as an aircrewman in the US Navy before getting his start in communications with GTE Telecommunications. He later joined COMSAT, where he was first introduced to satellite connectivity and finally joining Rockwell Collins ARINCDirect a few years later. Having held numerous roles within ARINCDirect since joining in 2004, David has spent the last 8 years leading cabin connectivity services - today one of Rockwell Collins' fastest growing businesses.
Senior Business Banking Analyst and Industry Specialist, First Republic Bank
Her 25+ year career in financial analysis and credit quality includes positions as an Assistant Bank Examiner with the FDIC, Assistant Vice President at Silicon Valley Bank, and as a Financial Analyst and Budget Manager for Agilent Technologies and Southcorp Wines.
Shelley joined First Republic Bank in 2004 where she cofounded the Bank’s Wine Lending vertical and segued into the Aviation & Marine lending team in 2007 when one of her art and hedge fund-focused clients purchased an aircraft. She co-authored the loan policy for wine, aircraft, and marine lending and oversees the underwriting and ongoing portfolio management for the Bank’s Aviation & Marine team, which has grown to nearly $700Million in closed commitments and has not yet incurred any losses since inception.
Shelley is a member of the International Aviation Women’s Association and over 20 organizations that are dedicated to historic preservation, patriotic endeavors, and meeting the needs of her community in the Napa Valley. She has contributed by serving on numerous boards and obtaining grants. She graduated from the University of Oregon with a focus on Finance, International Business, Economics, and Scandinavian Studies.
Paul Touw is an entrepreneur spanning 25 years in both technology and aviation startups. Mr. Touw is currently CEO & Chairman of Stellar Labs, Inc., which seeks to become the first complete open marketplace for private aviation.
Mr. Touw began his career as an engineer in the aerospace industry, and would later found or join six startups in Silicon Valley, three of which he served as CEO and three having public exists. He founded Ariba in 1996, the first B2B e-commerce marketplace serving Fortune 500 companies. He then founded XOJET in 2005, which today is the largest floating fleet charter operator in the U.S.
His most recent venture, Stellar Labs, capitalizes on both his backgrounds in marketplace technology and aviation charter. Mr. Touw is married with three children and lives in Saint Helena, California. He is also a private pilot.
Adam is CEO and co-founder of private jet booking platform, PrivateFly. He began his career as a pilot – first for 10 years with the British Royal Air Force, then moving into private aviation with NetJets – before launching PrivateFly in 2008.
PrivateFly is a fast-growing, global marketplace for private jet charter. Via its European head office in St Albans, UK and US office in Fort Lauderdale, it offers an expert 24-hour Flight Team, combined with significantly enhanced efficiency via technology. This gives transparent, better and faster pricing for the customer; and an improved marketing channel for aircraft operators.
PrivateFly was one of the first companies to receive the industry's best practice accreditation, Argus Certified Broker status, in May 2016 and Adam and his team continue to strive for greater efficiencies and innovations at every stage of the private charter booking process.
Adam is a high-profile and passionate spokesperson for the business aviation industry, a council member of industry body BACA and the chair of the EBAA (European Business Aviation Association) broker sub-committee. He remains an active pilot, flying the Citation XLS+.
|Ford von Weise
Director Global Head, Aircraft Finance, Citi Private Bank
Ford von Weise is currently a Director and Global Head of the Aircraft Finance Group at Citi Private Bank. The group provides private aircraft financing solutions to individual ultra high net worth clients and their companies throughout the world. Ford's responsibilities and roles while at Citi have included loan origination, product program management, reporting and workouts. The group focuses on transactions typically in the range of $10 to $50 million.
Ford has over fourteen years of business aviation experience most recently serving as Vice President of Business Aviation Finance for Merrill Lynch Capital. Prior to Merrill Lynch, he worked for GMAC Commercial Finance in the same capacity. His expertise covers a wide range of corporate and personal aircraft both domestically and internationally. Prior to joining GMAC, Mr. von Weise was Vice President of Capital Transactions at Lend Lease Real Estate investments, where he was responsible for the recapitalization and workout of large multi-family properties throughout the U.S.
Mr. von Weise is a member of the Board of Directors of the National Aircraft Finance Association and was appointed by the Boards of Selectmen from the Massachusetts towns of Concord, Lincoln, Bedford and Lexington as a commission member of the Hanscom Field Advisory Commission. He is also a past board member of the Massachusetts Business Aviation Association and a local volunteer representative for the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association. He is also an instrument rated pilot, aircraft owner, and a pilot for the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary. Mr. von Weise has also appeared on the Discovery Channel as an aviation expert in the Celebrity Crash Files, J.F.K., Jr, documentary series. He is also currently a member of the Board of Advisors for Brown Aviation Lease.
Ford holds an undergraduate degree, cum laude, in Environmental Studies and History from the University of Vermont.
Senior Vice President, Stonebriar Commercial Finance
Don Walsh is currently Senior Vice President of Originations for Stonebriar Commercial Finance, Business Aviation, the company’s global business aviation financing platform.
Don joined Stonebriar from Guggenheim Partners, where he was most recently a Managing Director and oversaw new transaction origination activity for Guggenheim’s Business Aircraft Investments group. He brings over 25 years of experience in the business aviation finance industry, previously originating transactions at US Bank Equipment Finance, Key Equipment Finance and Boeing Capital Corporation. He joined Boeing Capital following the merger between The Boeing Company and McDonnell Douglas Corporation. He previously worked at McDonnell Douglas Finance Corporation as an Asset Manager, responsible for the company’s portfolio of business aircraft operating leases. Prior to joining McDonnell Douglas Finance, he worked at Equitable Life Leasing Corporation as a lease manager. Don received a BS from University of the Pacific and an MBA from Pepperdine University.
With over two decades of experience in creating highly innovative air carriers in ways that have improved air travel for millions, Alex Wilcox now serves as CEO of JetSuite – a private jet airline which launched operations in 2009. In co-founding JetSuite in 2008, Alex brought new technology and unprecedented value to an industry in dire need of it. JetSuite is a launch customer for the Embraer Phenom 100, an airplane twice as efficient and more comfortable than other jets performing its missions. Also a founder of JetBlue, Alex was a driving force behind many airline industry changing innovations, including the implementation of LiveTV on board and all leather coach seating. Alex was also named a Henry Crown Fellow by the Aspen Institute and is a member of the Southern California chapter of Young Presidents Organization (YPO).
Managing Partner, Aeronautical Systems
Joseph T. Zulueta, ASA, Managing Partner of Aeronautical Systems Inc., has directed aviation portfolios, executed aircraft appraisals, forecasted future values and consulted on airplane equipment selection studies since the early 1990s.
Joseph also has been intimately involved in aviation financial analyses, fleet evaluations, contract maintenance and inspection “return” provisions, physical aircraft inspections and associated historical record auditing, equipment returns and remarketing strategies. Over the course of his aviation career, he has provided commercial jet and business aircraft market research along with value adjustment factors, current and future value trend analyses. He is noted as well for his skill in overhauling periodicity analyses, maintenance cost estimating and technical report writing in support of the aircraft appraisal process.