A few of our Industry Partners & Associates
Industry associates include the following companies:
- FAA – The Federal Aviation Administration, an operating mode of the U.S. Department of Transportation
- Florida Institute of Technology – FIT
- Sunrise Aviation – Pilot Training & Flight Instruction near Daytona Beach, FL
- TSA – Transportation Security Administration – protects the nation’s transportation systems for people & commerce
- WIA – Workforce Investment Act Laws & Regulations
- Silver Airways – US Airline with flights between Florida & the Caribbean
- SkyEagle Aviation – Full Part 141 Academy
- CIFA Peru – Aviation/Flight School
- SimPilot Peru – Flight Training School
- EMU/Eagle Flight Centre – Aviation Flight School at Willow Run Airport in Ypsilanti, MI
- SkyBlue Jet Aviation – Aviation company specializing in advanced Aircraft Training, Aircraft Management, Crewing, & Consulting.
- Airbrock Management & Charter Services – Airbrock holds a reputation for providing the highest quality of private jet charters and aircraft management services in Orlando, Florida since 2008.
- RwandAir – One of the fastest growing airlines and operates one of the youngest and state of the art fleet on the African continent.
- Fly Smart Pilot Training – Flight school located at the Kissimmee Airport offering various pay-as-you-go pilot training programs.
- AviationSchoolsOnline – Find reputable aviation resources for other aspects of your career training needs.
Introducing Our Team of Business Associates:
Deidra is a business leader with many years of experience working in aviation management. She has previously served as Director of Operations prior to being promoted to Chief Operating Officer of AeroStar. In 2015, she took over as the owner and Chief Executive Officer of AeroStar Training Services and transformed it into a multi-million dollar international corporation.
Under her leadership, AeroStar has gained recognition as one of the finest aviation-training providers in the world, by serving the needs of individuals as well as flight schools, colleges/universities, government agencies, and airlines across the globe. In addition to her success in the flight training industry, she is Owner and Chief Operating Officer of Spectrum Aero Maintenance Services, also located in Kissimmee, FL (KISM).
Dave Hensley is the Training Center Manager and Director of Training Services for AeroStar. He is a retired Air Force Colonel with extensive commander experience in both high altitude reconnaissance and jet training operations. He is a graduate of the USAF Academy and also earned a Master of Education degree in curriculum and instruction from South Dakota State University. His military flying career includes experience as a WC-130 “Typhoon Chaser” weather reconnaissance pilot, a T-38 “Talon” advanced jet instructor and evaluator, as well as a U-2/TR-1 “Dragon Lady” instructor/evaluator.
After a full military flying career, Dave retired and continued to fulfill his passion for aviation as a flight instructor. He was a flight academy Part 141 Chief Instructor and also a Part 142 Training Center Evaluator. He is a FAA Gold Seal flight instructor and also holds the National Association of Flight Instructor’s Master Flight Instructor designation. He has over 10,000 flight hours with over 5000 hours of dual instruction given and holds an Airline Transport Pilot license.
Rob Becker, our Director of Flight Training has been flight instructing full-time since 2009. Rob holds an ATP, MEL, and SEL license. Rob’s instructor ratings include CFI, CFII, and MEI with Gold Seal. He also has his Ground Instructor and Advanced Instrument Ground Instructor Ratings. He has 4,500 total flight hours and has given over 4,000 hours of instruction. He has also given 1,000 hours of multi-engine instruction.
Rob enjoys taking students on Discovery Flights and introducing students to the world of aviation. Rob has been happily married to his wife Lyn for 29 years and together they have two adult children. Prior to working in aviation, Rob owned a construction company for 26 years. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Over the past 13 years, Robin Frey has held marketing positions in various capacities including engineering, education, and the hospitality industry. She earned a Bachelor’s degree in Mass Communications from Illinois State University and a Master’s in Business Administration with a focus on Aviation from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University-Worldwide, graduating with distinguished honors.
Prior to joining AeroStar, Robin taught high school Career Technical Education courses in business and marketing in Salem, Oregon. Ever since her discovery flight in 2015, she’s been hooked on aviation. She is also a member of Women in Aviation International. Her husband works in aviation too as a pilot for PlaneSense and they currently live in the Orlando area with their two dogs and two cats. Email: email@example.com
Bobby grew up in the Florida panhandle in a military family and later moved to Northern Georgia. He came to Central Florida after serving in the US Air Force. He worked as an aircraft technician, later becoming the Director of Maintenance for an aviation company in Orlando before starting his own maintenance firm in Kissimmee in 2014. He is married to Deidra Wilson, owner and CEO of AeroStar.
Spectrum Aero, our sister company specializes in aircraft inspection, maintenance, and repairs. For generations, Bobby’s family has been involved in many aspects of aviation and over time, it has become a passion of his as well, which he enjoys sharing with others through his work. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Scott Edwards’ aviation career began with six years service in the US Army, where he was the Distinguished Honor Graduate at AH-64D Helicopter Repairer School, during Advanced Individual Training. Following which, he was stationed in Savannah, GA, Kileen, TX, South Korea, and deployed to Iraq.
After being honorably discharged, he completed a Bachelor of Science in Aeronautics with a Minor in Entrepreneurship at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Daytona Beach, where he also obtained his Private Pilot Certificate (ASEL) and Instrument Endorsement. Since then, he has held various positions in corporate aviation, concentrating in scheduling; procurement, and operations. Currently, Scott is Aerostar’s Training Center Coordinator. Email: email@example.com
Kelvin Minaya is our Bookkeeping Manager. He is originally Dominican and grew up in Providence, Rhode Island, making him bilingual in Spanish and English. At age 13, Kelvin’s family moved to Kissimmee, Florida where just a few years later where he began working in the aviation industry as a Training Services Coordinator.
Since then Kelvin has worked at three flight schools and a helicopter touring company, but now wants to focus on becoming a licensed CPA. He starts classes in Spring 2018 at the University of Central Florida (Go Knights!). His hobbies include yoga, horticulture, and collecting lapel pins. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Devin has worked for AeroStar for over a year and has attended the flight attendant program with a long-term career goal of traveling and working as a flight attendant. She was born and raised in St. Cloud, Florida and is also interested in pursuing a degree in Aviation and Business in the future. Email: email@example.com
Rob Messer has been a customer support specialist with AeroStar since 2015, and previously owned an emergency medical transport business in Central Florida for 20 years. Before that, Rob was a restaurant owner of a steakhouse in Kissimmee with his wife.
He has always been entrepreneurial at heart and now enjoys helping students advance their aviation careers. In his free time, Rob can be found reading, traveling, yard work and spending time with his family and dogs. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
AeroStar Training Services’ Flight Instructor Associates:
Captain Santo has accumulated over 14,000 hours flying Airbus A319/320/321/330, Boeing B747-400, B-727, Douglas DC-9, Learjet, Citation Jet, and Hansa Jet HF-320 aircraft. Captain Santo has served in positions as Check Airman, Flight Test Captain, Delivery Captain, Simulator Instructor, Training Center Evaluator and line pilot for various well known airlines such as JetBlue Airways, NorthWest Airlines (now part of Delta Airline), Atlas Airlines and American International Airways.
Captain Santo is also one of the original founders and former President of AeroStar Training Services, who has experience developing, managing, and constructing training programs and facilities from inception to completion.
Captain Barra has served as an A320 sim and ground instructor with AeroStar since 2009. He has experience on the A320, C-130, on all models for USAF, Coast Guard Pilots, and Air Force; Lear jets 25 and 35, N-265 and Cessna CitationUltra CE-560, CE-550, Falcon 20, and Metroliner (SW-II).
He was also part of the Venezuelan Air Force with experience on the Supersonic Fighter CF-5, instructed on T-34, T2-D, C-123 (cargo), BE-65, BE-90, BE-200, B-707, and A-319. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Aeronautical Science and Aeronautical Engineering.
Majid Khokhar earned his Bachelor of Science at the University of Punjab and has acquired more than 5,000 flight hours in his career as a pilot. He completed his flight training in Sanford, Florida and served as a flight instructor in Orlando from 2006 until 2011. He has served as a captain and first officer for GoJet Airlines on the CRJ-700/900 series as well as serving as a flight instructor for AeroStar Training Services since 2011.
Mike Charles has served as a first officer on the Airbus A320 for JetBlue Airways since 2008 and previously worked as a captain and first officer on the EMB-145LR for Mesa Airlines based out of Orlando. He was also employed as a flight instructor for Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach from 1998-2000. He earned his Bachelor’s degree from Embry-Riddle as well in Aeronautical Science. His accumulated flight hours have totaled over 10,000 to date.
Ray Coombs has been flying since 2004. He is typed on the CL65-200/700/900, B747-200/300, ERJ145, and A320/321 aircraft. His instructor licenses include CFI, CFII, and MEI. Ray has instructed at Aerostar’s Business partner, Phoenix East Aviation in Daytona Beach, FL and served as a Check Instructor and Director of Flight Standards.
He has also worked for Mesa Air Group, Evergreen International Airlines, Southern Air, Max Air, Trans States Airlines, and JetBlue Airways. Ray gained over 9,000 hours of flight experience flying both domestic and international and is also still current and qualified on the A320/321.
Alexander Pintado holds an ATP certificate and has acquired over 4,500 flight hours in his aviation career. He has worked as a flight instructor since 2008. Alex has also worked as a contract pilot for AP Aviation Services and a first officer and captain for Centurion Air Cargo company. He has international wide-body jet experience including Atlantic crossings and is fluent in both Spanish and English.
Meet another one of our associates, Captain Jon Heyl. Captain Heyl has accumulated over 8,000 hours flying the Boeing 737 (BBJ, CL & NG), 767 and 747-400 along with the CE-650 and 500 and an additional 2,000 hours as SIM Instructor on 747, 767 and 737. Captain Heyl served as Training Center Evaluator (737), SIM, Ground and Flight Instructor, Chief Flight Instructor, Check Airman and TrainingCoordinator.
Captain Heyl is currently a SIM Ground Instructor and Check Airman on the Boeing 747-400 with Western Global Airlines, and previously flown with New Gen Airways (Bangkok, Thailand), Polaris, Swift Air, Miami Air and as Corporate Chief Pilot.
Captain Pete Dunn is a long-time associate of AeroStar, having partnered together to launch the first collegiate jet type-rating program at Florida Tech. Seven Florida Tech seniors earned their A320 type rating from AeroStar as a result. Captain Dunn was also the lead faculty member when AeroStar trained ab-initio students for a major foreign carrier. In just five months, AeroStar instructors delivered 115 A320 and B737 type ratings: an incredible feat worthy of America’s largest airlines, and unprecedented for a Part 142 Academy.
Finally, Captain Dunn worked closely with AeroStar’s Dave Hensley to create our ATP-CTP training program. This program has made AeroStar the largest provider of ATP-CTP courses in America, and leader in the industry.
Captain Rafael Madrid has accumulated over 10,000 hours flying Boeing 767, Boeing 737, Airbus 320 family and Embraer 170/190 aircraft. Captain Madrid has served as Director of Flight Standards, Maintenance Test Pilot, Simulator Instructor, Line Instructor, Check Airman and Captain for various US-based and international airlines such as LAN Airlines, Eastern Air Lines, Spirit, and Republic Airlines.
Captain Madrid is also currently pursuing his bachelor’s degree in Aeronautical Science with a minor in Aerodynamics.
Joe has accumulated over 21,000 flying hours. He is an Airline Transport Pilot for both single and multi-engine aircraft. He is also type rated in the following aircraft: Saab 340, Fokker F-28, Boeing 737, 757, 767, Airbus A330-200, and has also flown the Boeing 727. Having made over 150 North Atlantic crossings, Millard flew for airlines Piedmont & USAirways for over 26 years. Millard also has FAR 135 & 121 experience at Mississippi Valley Airlines & Silver Airways and Mountain Air Cargo.
He grew up in aviation with a father who was a commercial pilot, flight instructor, and mechanic for American Airlines. His first airplane ride occurred at less than one month old. Joe’s non-aviation activities include amateur radio, extra class, and antique cars. Mr. Millard has taught college level aviation courses at Parks College in the past and is very excited to join AeroStar’s team of excellent instructors.
Michael has over 30 years of experience as a flight attendant for both the airlines and as a corporate flight attendant. He also has his private and commercial pilot’s license. Zois has been a flight instructor teaching Cabin Safety for over 15years, in addition to serving as a CFI for over 10 years.
He has flown for Qantas and Delta Airlines and is currently flying for Net Jets Aviation, a fractional ownership private jet company. Flying is his passion along with meeting people and providing a world class service keeping in mind that SAFETY is his number one priority in any aviation business.