Neil Hershman is a high school student in New York. After years of flight simulator and remote controlled planes, he went on his first flight lesson at age 16. It only took four months and 20 hours of flight time before Neil was signed off for his first solo flight. Now, at age 17, he has earned his private pilot certificate and flies a Cirrus SR20. Neil's long term aviation goal is to bring general aviation to the masses while lowering operating costs and improving safety. You can learn more about Neil from his personal blog, www.N311LS.com, YouTube channel, and through Twitter, @Neil_Hershman.
Todd is a private pilot that realized his dream of becoming a pilot in 2004. Since then he continues to fly regularly, continually improving his skills and exploring new destinations. He enjoys flying throughout the Midwest, mainly flying Cessna products. Todd enjoys sharing his enthusiasm for aviation with others and shared his experiences learning to fly on his blog, myflightblog.com. Some of his favorite aviation experiences include: landing on any well maintained turf field he can find, experiencing a glacier landing in Alaska, and going for a ride in a B-17 Flying Fortress. Todd also is enjoying the opportunity to be an AOPA Project Pilot Mentor.
Jason Miller is a full time flight instructor based in the San Francisco Bay Area. Ten years on the flight line and more than 4000 hours of dual given give Jason a unique perspective into what pilots can do to increase their skills and make their flying safer. In 2005 Jason began publishing these thoughts in a weekly aviation podcast, ‘The Finer Points - Aviation Podcast’. "The Finer Points" (www.thefinerpoints.net) blends complex aeronautical concepts with practical tips from the flight line and a healthy dose of original music. Charming and informative, these podcasts deliver all sorts of CFI wisdom as well as interviews, accident analysis and more. Over the last six years the podcast has expanded into a series of video tutorials and has delivered more than 2.5 million flight training tips to pilot’s all over the world. In 2010, TFP was voted number 5 in AOPA’s ‘top ten online training resources’. Jason is passionate about safety in General Aviation, loves all things ‘airplane’ and when he is not teaching or working on The Finer Points, works as a consultant to NASA on nextGen aviation technologies.
Jason Schappert is a full-time flight instructor and dedicated aviation enthusiast based in Ocala, Florida. He was named Top Collegiate Flight Instructor at NIFA 2008, an event sponsored by AOPA. Jason also is the creatorof MzeroA.com and the author of five aviation books. His video blog reaches hundreds of thousands of pilots everymonth, helping them accomplish their dream of learning to fly.
Jason also operates Schapp Aviation. A private flight training facility serving all of Central Florida. A pilot since 16 years of age, Jason has the experience and qualifications to help you with any aspect of your flight training.
Kristen Seaman earned her private pilot certificate in December 2012. As a new pilot, she enjoys mixing humor in with valuable lessons as she shares her new adventures with readers. Kristen is a graduate of Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University’s Applied Meteorology program. Surrounded by aviation in her social and academic life, she quickly became fascinated by flight and being “up in the clouds” with the weather that she was so passionate about. She currently works in AOPA’s Communications department in Frederick, MD and is pursuing an MBA in Aviation.
Mrs. Ariel Talen-Keller is the reigning Mrs. Alaska United America pageant winner. She will be representing the State of Alaska in the United America National pageant held in June 2013 in Austin, Texas. Mrs. Keller founded a non-profit organization and scholarship fund to encourage and educate women of all ages to become involved in aviation. Mrs. Keller has a Master of Aeronautical Science degree from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and a Bachelor of Science in Geography from the University of Oregon. She also attended the John D. Odegard School of Aerospace Sciences at the University of North Dakota where she learned to fly. She is also a proud recipient of a Presidents Volunteer Service Award in 2012 for her extensive community service involvements. Mrs. Keller continues to travel throughout Alaska and around the United States talking about her non-profit organization.
Please follow her on Facebook at MrsAlaskaUnitedAmerica. For appearance or scholarship donation information, please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Blaine is a 51-year-old student pilot in Sonoma, Calif. After a lifetime of dreaming about it, Blaine began working on his private pilot certificate in May of 2012 and in the first 10 weeks logged more than 30 hours, soloed in both a Citabria and a Cessna 172 and earned his tail wheel endorsement. He has flown 4 planes with 4 different CFI's, since starting his training, and taken lessons on both the west and east coast, recently flying out at the eastern end of Long Island NY before returning to his regular training schedule in Sonoma.
He is now flying 4 or 5 days a week and keeps a journal with notes and GPS tracks of every flight at http://whizbomb.com/flying-journal.html. He started the journal as a way to keep track of his progress and communicate with his instructors, but after reading a post in "Let's Go Flying" realized that such experiences might be interesting, if not helpful to other students and prospective pilots. Once Blaine receives his private pilot certificate he hopes to continue his training and receive his commercial certificate as well.
Steve Tupper is a commercial pilot, the host of the Airspeed podcast (www.airspeedonline.com), an aerobatic competitor, and one of the newest airshow pilots in the country. He holds commercial or private privileges in gliders, single- and multi-engine airplanes and single-engine seaplanes, and is type-rated (SIC) in the mighty DC-3/C-47 (the 1930s and 40s airliner and military transport aircraft). Having completed the private certificate and instrument rating during his first six years of flying, he is now on a mission to expand his aviation experience by pursuing new and different opportunities. He has shot two documentary feature films (www.acrocamp.com) covering the experiences of pilots flying aerobatics for the first time. He has been on orientation flights with, among others, the the USAF Thunderbirds in the mighty F-16 Fighting Falcon. He’s a major and a rated search-and-rescue pilot in the Civil Air Patrol (the civilian auxiliary of the US Air Force). He is also a writer and contributor of video and audio for the aviation documentary feature film, A Pilot’s Story (www.apilotsstory.com). For all of the great experiences that the podcast and blog (and, heck, flying!) have given him, he’s mostly an average joe with a great day job who constantly daydreams about sneaking away to the airport. If he has a unique perspective, it’s that of the average guy who understands what the grandeur, challenge, and discipline of aviation can do. He takes every opportunity to encourage non-pilots to begin and continue flight training. When not in the cockpit, he is a technology and aviation lawyer with a large firm near Detroit.