In The News
Providing business aviation internships for young people might be the best way to attract new talent. Finding ways to attract young, talented workers to business aviation has bedeviled industry stakeholders for years. As hundreds of experienced baby boomers with institutional knowledge retire – and with most collegiate aviation programs focused on airline job opportunities – business aviation must consider new methods to effectively draw suitable candidates to the industry. Among all the possibilities, internships have shown to be one of the most effective methods of grooming new business aviation professionals. View the article in the NBAA Business Aviation Insider.
By setting your goals before you leave for the show and following the advice of industry veterans, you can get the most out of business aviation’s biggest event.Business aircraft operators face many of their challenges in isolation. Set apart from their parent company, in a hangar across town, sometimes the only business aircraft operator on the field, it’s hard to know where to start when confronting a regulatory issue, a tax audit or a question about contract crew. "One of the biggest gaps in knowledge for people in our industry is not knowing what resources are available to you,” said Don Hitch, vice president of flight operations for the Wonderful Company. “That’s why it’s so important use your network. If you don’t know somebody who can help, chances are somebody else knows somebody. Read the full article here
“I don’t know of a more worthy individual to have been selected for this prestigious recognition,” stated Sheryl Barden, President and CEO, Aviation Personnel International. “Janice, through her hard work and dedication to the aviation field, has made API what it is today – an industry leader in the business aviation recruiting business. She is truly a trailblazer.”Barden, who currently lives in St. Helena, California, was born in Cleveland and raised in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio. In 1971, she founded Aviation Personnel International, the first female-owned and operated search firm exclusively dedicated to the hiring needs of the business aviation industry. As a female working in the once male-dominated field of aviation, Barden paved the way for thousands of men and women alike, who, like she, nurtured a love for aviation and its related disciplines. Earlier this year, Barden was hailed as an industry “game changer” by the National Business Aviation Association and in 2014 was the recipient of the National Aeronautic Association’s Wesley L. McDonald Distinguished Statesman of Aviation Award. The Ohio Senior Citizens Hall of Fame honors hand-selected individuals age 60 and older who are native-born Ohioans or who have been Ohio residents for at least 10 years. Nominations are evaluated on the impact of current contributions or a continuation of work and accomplishments begun before age 60. This year's nominees range in age from 67 to 92. L to R: Jacqi Bradley, CEO of the Area Agency on Aging 3; Janice K. Barden, inductee; and Bonnie Burman director of the Ohio Department of Aging About Aviation Personnel International Now celebrating 43 years in aviation, Aviation Personnel International (API) is the longest-running aviation recruiting business, exclusively serving the hiring needs of flight departments in corporate and private aviation. API offers its clients the broadest portfolio of fully vetted candidates, including senior aviation leaders, pilots, maintenance, cabin safety crew, schedulers and dispatchers. Based in San Francisco, the API team combines their extensive aviation knowledge with their expertise in human resources and executive recruiting to provide retained recruitment services, talent identification, staff development and outplacement services for flight departments of two or two hundred.
- Pete Agur, of The VanAllen Group, who influenced business aviation leaders to better align and manage their respective organizations.
- Janice Barden, of Aviation Personnel International, who influenced the quality of personnel flying airplanes.
- Robert Duncan, of Duncan Aviation, who applied innovative ideas to make aviation services readily accessible to customers.
- Sir Ranulph Fiennes, an English adventurer, who inspired risk-taking by exploring remote regions on Earth.
- Joan Sullivan Garrett, of MedAire, who promoted standardized access to medical services on business aircraft.
- Benn Isaacman, who elevated the importance of interior cabin design in business jets.
- Chuck McKinnon, retired from the IBM Flight Department, who encouraged greater cabin business amenities and the use of technology in the cabin.
- Greg Evans, of Universal Weather, who developed new solutions to support business aviation flight access and planning.
- Russ Meyer, of Textron, a longtime industry leader and advocate who led passage of revitalization legislation that promoted industry growth.
- Tom Flick: A former college and NFL quarterback, Flick is president of a communications company and a leadership expert. He will provide attendees with insights on how the best leaders influence and inspire to create a successful business culture.
- Ross Bernstein: Author of nearly 50 sports books, Bernstein has interviewed thousands of athletes and applies the stories and lessons he has written about to the business world.
- Kristin Arnold: President and founder of Quality Process Consultants, Inc., Arnold will facilitate a dialogue with the audience about leadership and critical issues facing business aviation today and in the future.
Barrington Irving was a star attraction at the Compton Middle Schools STEM day on October 12. (Photo: Matt Thurber)I was wrong. In a conversation with Sheryl Barden, president and CEO of Aviation Personnel International, I dismissed her idea of reaching out to middle and high school counselors to promote careers in business aviation. We were discussing this subject before the NBAA Convention in October, where she was part of a panel session on business aviation careers. Knowing how busy the counselors are at my kids’ high school, I felt that it would be difficult to get their attention and that other industries are trying to do the very same to attract kids to their career opportunities. On October 12, I found out how wrong I was. I drove to Davis Middle School in Compton, Calif., to see the Compton school district’s first annual science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) day celebration and to see how the kids reacted to the arrival of Barrington Irving in a Robinson R-44 helicopter. Irving and his crew flew to Australia and the Asia-Pacific region in a Hawker 400XP equipped as the Flying Classroom, promoting STEM education and introducing kids to the joys of aviation. Irving took off on September 23 and completed the trip in Miami in mid-October. The visit to Compton wasn’t originally planned and was added at the last minute, during the Flying Classroom’s stop in Van Nuys, Calif., where Irving and sponsor Clay Lacy Aviation hosted an event for kids from Gault Elementary School. At the Compton event, more than 1,000 kids were bused in from other Compton schools. Davis Middle School, by the way, is named after Gen. Benjamin O. Davis, commander of the Tuskegee Airmen. All of us at the event were thrilled to see Tuskegee crew chief Levi Thornhill, who told the kids, “Pay attention to what your teachers are trying to teach you. Take advantage of what you learn and take care of your friends.” The STEM day at Davis Middle School wasn’t just about Barrington Irving’s Experience Aviation program and the Flying Classroom, although the arrival of the R-44 and a Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department AStar was plenty thrilling for the kids. STEM participants put up booths to show off their work–robots, architectural models, flying machines, etc. The kids were uniformly polite and welcoming and they lined up in droves to see the inside of the helicopters. The R-44 carrying Irving was flown by a local hero, Robin Petgrave, chief pilot and president of Celebrity Helicopters and founder of Tomorrow’s Aeronautical Museum (both are based at Compton Airport). Petgrave and the museum put donations and grants to work to help local kids learn about aviation and learn to fly, and many of these kids have gone on to remunerative aviation careers. While at the STEM day, I spoke to two counselors at Compton schools and asked them if they wanted industry help to highlight careers in aviation. Rather than complain how busy they are, both responded enthusiastically. Apparently no industries currently are pestering these counselors for attention, so the door is wide open for aviation. This is where I was wrong, so Sheryl, by all means encourage everyone you know to contact their local middle and high school counselors and get aviation’s foot in the door. Every company I speak to in aviation these days complains about how hard it is to find qualified personnel. If we don’t prime the pump for the future, then it’s our own fault. These kids are enthusiastic, smart, ambitious and just plain fun. What is your plan to reach out to them?