It truly takes a team to make Augusta Aviation, Inc. the company it is today, and I do not take that for granted. I am proud of every team member here as I see the dedication and devotion they put into what they do.
From time to time, I will highlight an individual team player here on our website and on Facebook. Please take a moment to read my musings.
This month I would like to highlight one of Augusta Aviation, Inc.'s associates. It’s a difficult process to select a specific associate from time-to-time, as everyone here makes such a contribution to our company.
However, the man I would like to acknowledge this month is Mr. Brian Fry. Brian has been with us for 9 years as of June 1, 2015. He came to us as a strong Beechcraft technician, and has very quickly become the area’s expert on the King Air series, to include the three that belong to Augusta Aviation, Inc.
Most of you reading this know that a successful flight mission is not an uncomplicated task. Our folks may make it look that way, but from the lineman that fuels and readies the aircraft, to the flight crew in the front of the aircraft, to those that keep all those thousands of parts working in harmony, it takes all of them working together to defy gravity and complete the mission.
Brian epitomizes the team player. He is on call 24/7, works during his vacation, when sick, whenever one of his aircraft (King Airs) needs attention. He has rescheduled his time-off time and time again. He has worked more weekends than some of our lineman! smile emoticon He is always available to fulfill his role here at Augusta Aviation, Inc. to keep things running smoothly.
Brian is not perfect by any standard. He is from Miami - so need I say more on that subject? He and I butt heads often on a particular subject or direction of troubleshooting. However, that’s what family does, doesn’t it? No matter what is said or done, we always are pulling the wagon in the same direction - frankly, with Brian at the front.
At the end of the day, I rest easy knowing he is on the job, following his aircraft, keeping them ready for flight and keeping them safe. I am extremely proud he is part of the Augusta Aviation, Inc. family. Brian has many others in our shop that support him in his role. But, today, thank you Brian, for your unwavering support.
From time to time I like to take the opportunity to highlight an associate of Augusta Aviation, Inc. that has made significant contributions to our company. I would like to recognize Scot Page, who was hired a little over a year ago as our Chief Flight Instructor. Scot is a pleasure to work with. He is always upbeat, positive, and an awesome flight instructor. Scot also flies Charter as an Augusta Aviation, Inc. SIC. He is always willing and most able to step up and do what is asked of him, without question or complaint.
Under Scot’s leadership, our flight school has continued to grow and flourish. The influx of young people, and some older students as well, is very encouraging. His ability to hire and work with fellow instructors is remarkable. In an environment that is often transient in nature, Scot’s emphasis on his students and charter customers is unparalleled.
The only concern I have with Scot is his love of hockey. Actually, I think his love of hockey is one of the things that drives him to be the very best he can be. However, flight instructors and charter pilots with missing front teeth don’t do well for our image. Be careful out there, Scot. Hockey is a lot more dangerous than flying!
Scot, thank you for your noteworthy contributions to our company. It is a pleasure working with you and having you on the AA team. - Steve
The associate I would like to call attention to this month hits close to home. It's my daughter, Rosemary Gay. Rosie, as we all affectionally call her, has worked for Augusta Aviation for 12 years. Ok, child labor laws don't apply to owners' children, or if they do, who cares for the sake of this article. She will be 22 on Friday, Happy early Birthday Rosie!
In her short years, Rosie has been to Africa to build wells to produce clean drinking water for kids in need; Asia to share the gospel with children in need; Italy to study abroad. She slipped that one in on me. Be that as it may, her love and passion for people is what has made her a great Customer Service Representative for us.
Today I beamed with pride as Roise was sworn in as a CASA case worker, to advocate for children in foster care. Few folks choose this path, it seemed quite the natural fit for Rosie. To be able to sort out, encourage, direct, and then advocate for the child's wishes is no easy task. I sense Rosie is well equipped and up to the challenge.
So, while most likely we will say goodbye to Rosie at Augusta Aviation in 2015 when she graduates from GRU in May, and moves away to work on her Masters Degree, it will not be without her having left her infectious laugh, good will, and possibly mono with us all.
Thanks Rosebud for being a great daughter and associate at AA. To those of you that keep secrets from me concerning her: who she is dating, where she is, etc. I will seek you out and make your existence miserable. Just kidding....Or not....
I have said all along FB is not where Augusta Aviation, Inc. wants to fight battles. Our goal is to always encourage, enlighten and highlight the positives about our company, airport, customers and employees. The tower may have taken away from that a bit but my goal is to return to our original intent.
I will be doing an employee spotlight from time to time and this week it is Heather Lund.
We’ve all heard it said that dynamite comes in small packages. As the owner of Augusta Aviation, Inc., I can tell you that Heather Lund is the epitome of that statement. She’s barely over 5 feet tall but has the tenacity of a bulldog:
Heather joined the Augusta Aviation, Inc. team in February 2010 as a CFI. While teaching primary flight students, she logged time in the right seat of our King Airs as a first officer. In just a little over 2 years, she was promoted to our charter department as a full time captain. Today she is 1 of our 7 captains. I can honestly say in my 33 years I have not seen one move so quickly into a very complex airplane. This speaks volumes about her skills.
I often joke about Heather’s nurturing touch when it comes to our King Airs, as she knows how to make them purr like kittens, or growl like lions, when it comes to the Beast, our B100. Our customers have nothing but the highest regards for this young lady.
Her fellow employees respect her flight skills and decision making abilities and I am so very proud to have her on our team.
I would be remiss if I didn’t mention Heather’s move to Augusta some 4 years ago put her in the flight path of true love. A young man by the name of Eric Lund signed up for an Introductory Flight Lesson and Heather just happened to be his instructor. The story is told that Eric took a few more lessons and then asked Heather out on a date. She told him that she could go out with him or she could teach him to fly, but she couldn’t do both. On March 2, 2013, Miss Heather Kasubowski became Mrs. Heather Lund. Needless to say we lost a student, but could not be more happy for them both.
Please join me in acknowledging Heather Lund as an exceptional team member of Augusta Aviation, Inc. And, if you see a King Air taxi up as if there is no one in the drivers seat, that would be Heather!
As 2014 begins to wind down, there is an associate I would like to call special attention to this month - Mr. Jim Cook. Jim is the man who stepped up to fill Mike Lockaby's shoes, our Service Manager position, just over a year ago.
Jim has risen to the occasion and is a very quick study. His tireless effort to provide for our customers, the AA fleet, and his team, is unparalleled. In a meeting just this past week, he also informed me he was the smartest one in the room, but then quickly retracted his comments, only for me to say, "You are the smartest one in the room, I own an FBO" which puts me way down the smart list!! Jim is funny, hard working and one of the most dedicated associates I have ever had the pleasure of working with. It's one thing to work with good folks daily, but quite another to enjoy the folks we work with each day. Jim is one of these people. I look forward to seeing him as he is always trying to do the very best job possible. With safety as his number one priority, Jim is continually looking for ways to save the customer and the company money. He takes his job and decisions as seriously as if he, himself, owned the company.
That's Jim Cook. Thank you, Jim, and may you and your family as well as all of the AA family have a blessed Christmas. For the record, if Lynette yells at me one more time, I might just cry... Steven Gay