National Accreditation Recognized By The FAA
Master Instructors LLC and its Board of Review take pride in
announcing a significant aviation accomplishment on the part of
these very special aviation educators. Recently, they were
all accredited as Masters by Master Instructors LLC, the
international Master Instructor accrediting authority.
The Master Instructor designation is a national accreditation
recognized by the FAA and industry that is earned by a candidate
through a rigorous process of continuing professional activity and
peer review. Much like a flight instructor's certificate, it
must be renewed biennially. This process parallels continuing
education regimens used by other professionals to enhance their
knowledge base while increasing their professionalism. Simply put,
the Master Instructor designation is a means by which to identify
those outstanding aviation educators, those "Teachers of Flight,"
who are demonstrating an ongoing commitment to excellence,
professional growth, and service to the aviation community.
To help put this achievement in its proper perspective, there are
approximately 93,000 CFIs in the United States. Fewer than 700 of
them have earned Master accreditation thus far. As a measure of the
prestige conferred by this title, the last 14 FAA National Flight
Instructors of the Year were Master CFIs. In addition, the
FAA has approved the accreditation as an alternate means for CFIs
to renew their flight instructor certificates.
Through their dedication to excellence, Master Instructors have
earned their "black belts" in aviation education. They truly
represent the crème de la crème of the aviation
Aviation educators who earned the "Master" title during
John Wesley "Jack" Vandeventer, Master CFI,
John is a 3-time Master and a SAFE member. He is an independent CFI
who also instructs with Eagle Flyers at Indianapolis Executive
Airport (TYQ) where he specializes in primary, instrument, and
tailwheel training. Additionally, he serves as a FAASTeam
representative in the FAA's Indianapolis FSDO area.
James Leighton "Jim" Stover, Master CFI,
James is a 5-time Master and SAFE member. He is the chief flight
instructor and owner of JLS Aviation (www.JLSAviation.info), a Part 141
flight school at Shannon Airport (EZF) where he specializes in
primary and instrument flight training. He also serves in the
Virgina Wing of the Civil Air Patrol.
Eric Joseph Shappee, Master CFI, Salina,
Eric is a 5-time Master and SAFE member. He specializes in glider
tow training and unmanned aerial vehicle systems at KSU's aviation
facility ( www.Salina.K-State.edu/Aviation
) at Salina Municipal Airport (SLN). He also
serves in the CAP's Kansas Wing and is a FAASTeam representative in
the FAA's Wichita FSDO area.
Beverly Jean Runner, Master CFI, Lakeside,
Jean, a 4-time Master and SAFE member, is an independent flight
instructor at El Cajon's Gillespie Field (SEE). She also
serves as a judge for the Pacific Coast Intercollegiate Flying
Association (PCIFA), a coach and evaluator for SDCC aviation
students, and is a FAASTeam representative in the FAA's San Diego
Michael Louis Phillips, Master CFI, Ventura, CA
Michael us a 2-time Master and SAFE member. He is an aviation
educator with CP Aviation ( www.CPAviation.com ), a Cessna
Pilot Center at Santa Paula Airport (SZP). He also serves as
the SAFE membership committee co-chair and is a FAASTeam
representative in the FAA's Van Nuys FSDO area.
Michael Keith Leighton, Master CFI, Boynton
A 2-time Master and SAFE member, Michael is a noted aviation author
and an independent flight instructor at Palm Beach County Park
Airport (LNA) specializing in tailwheel, instrument, and
multiengine training. He is also the manager of Aviation
Partners of Boynton Beach.
Gregory Brian "Greg" Koontz, Master
CFI-Aerobatic, Ashville, AL
Greg is a member of the International Aerobatic Club (IAC). He is a
flight instructor and airshow performer who operates Greg Koontz
Airshows ( www.GKAirshows.com ) at Ashville's
Dugger's Field Airport (AL60). He also serves as a FAASTeam
representative for the FAA's Birmingham FSDO.
Christopher John "Chris" Hope, Master CFI,
Kansas City, MO
Christopher, a 2-time Master and a SAFE member, is an independent
flight instructor (ChrisHopeFAAFlightInstructor.com) specializing
in primary and instrument training at Lee's Summit (LXT) and
Johnson County Executive (OJC) airports. He also serves as a
FAASTeam Representative in the FAA's Kansas City FSDO area.
Robert Kloman "Bob" Gawler, Master CFI,
Robert, a 6-time Master and SAFE member, is an independent flight
instructor as well as a designated pilot examiner (DPE) at
Montgomery County Airpark (GAI) in Gaithersburg. He also
works with the Civil Air Patrol and serves as a FAASTeam
representative for the FAA's Baltimore FSDO area.
Thomas Monroe "Tom" Evans, Master CFI, Tampa,
Thomas is a 5-time Master and SAFE member. He is a flight and
ground instructor with Atlas Aviation ( www.AtlasAviationInc.com ), a
Cessna Pilot Center at Tampa's Peter O Knight Field (TPF). He
also serves as president of the Florida Association of Flight
Instructors and is a FAASTeam rep in the FAA's North Florida FSDO
Terry Lee Claussen, Master CFI, Phoenix,
Terry, a 6-time Master and SAFE member, is a B-757 crew training
instructor for US Airways as well as a glider and powered aircraft
instructor at Maricopa's Estrella Sailport (http://www.AZSoaring.com/).
He also serves as a pilot examiner (DPE) in the FAA's Scottsdale
Melvin Gerald "Mel" Burkart, Master CFI, Saint
Melvin, a 3-time Master, is an independent fixed-wing and glider
instructor, an aviation professor emeritus at Parks College, and a
recipient of the FAA's Wright Brothers Master Pilot Award. He
also serves as a FAASTeam Representative in the FAA's Saint Louis