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Sat, May 06, 2023

Vertical Flight Society 2023 Board of Directors Announced

Industry Luminaries Ensure Solid VFS Leadership

The Vertical Flight Society (VFS), a non-profit technical society for the advancement of vertical flight, has named its 2023-2024 Board of Directors.

The following members were re-elected to the Board’s Executive Committee for an additional one-year term spanning 01 July 2023 through 30 June 2024:

  • Chair: Tomasz Krysinski, Vice President Research & Technology, Airbus Helicopters.
  • President: Kathleen “K.J.” Jolivette, Vice President/General Manager, Boeing Vertical Lift.
  • Secretary/Treasurer: Harry Nahatis, Vice President/General Manager Turboshaft Engine Programs, GE Aerospace.

The reelection of the Board Executive Committee will provide stability during the coming year, as the staff leadership transitions to incoming Executive Director Angelo Collins who, on 01 June 2023, will supersede outgoing Executive Director (2011-2023) Mike Hirschberg. Mr. Hirschberg will remain on staff as VFS’s Director of Strategy.

Members in half of the Vertical Flight Society’s ten regions elected or re-elected regional directors and vice-presidents for the two-year term spanning 01 July 2023 through 30 June 2025. Persons new to the Board are indicated by asterisk.

Asia-Australia Region (members in Asia and Oceania)

  • Vice President: Dr. Arvind Sinha, University of Melbourne.
  • Director: Dr. Yasutada Tanabe, Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA). *

 Europe-Africa Region (members in Europe and Africa)

  • Vice President: Luca Medici, Leonardo Helicopters.
  • Director: Arnaud Le Pape, ONERA.

 US Midwest Region (members in the Dayton and St Louis Chapters)

  • Vice President: Dr. Charlie Svoboda, Jr., The Boeing Company.
  • Director: Prof. David A. Peters, Washington University in St. Louis.

 US Northeast Region (members in the East New England, Stratford, Connecticut Valley, and Empire State Chapters)

  • Vice President: Usman Asif, Sikorsky, a Lockheed-Martin Company.
  • Director: Steven Schmidt, Sikorsky, a Lockheed-Martin Company

 US Southern Region (members in the Redstone, Atlanta, Jake Fortner, and South Florida Chapters)

  • Vice President: Mark J. Jeude, IronMountain Solutions.
  • Director: Prof. JVR Prasad, Georgia Tech.

 Other elected members of the Board of Directors, who will continue to serve until 30 June 2024, are as follows:

Americas Region (Canada, Central America, and South America)

  • Vice President: Chantal Boucher, Bell.
  • Regional Director: Kenneth Swartz, Aeromedia Communications.

US Mideast Region (Philadelphia and Erie Chapters, and surrounding areas)

  • Vice President: Keith Conaron, The Boeing Company.
  • Regional Director: William Sunick, Leonardo Helicopters.

 U.S. Southeast Region (Aberdeen, Federal City, Patuxent River, Hampton Roads, and Cherry Point Chapters and surrounding areas)

  • Vice President: Dr. Mark Robeson, U.S. Army DEVCOM, Aviation & Missile Center.
  • Regional Director: Dr. Rajneesh Singh, U.S. Army DEVCOM, Army Research Laboratory

 US Southwest Region (Southwest Chapter and all surrounding areas)

  • Vice President: Layne Merritt, Intellisense Systems, Inc.
  • Regional Director: Christos Bais, Joby Aviation.

 US Western Region (Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Arizona Chapters, and all surrounding areas)

  • Vice President: Dr. Colin Theodore, NASA Ames Research Center.
  • Regional Director: Scott Swinsick, The Boeing Company.

 The following individuals are current appointed (voting) members of the Vertical Flight Society’s Board of Directors:

  • Technical Director: Dr. Mahendra Bhagwat, U.S. Army DEVCOM, Aviation & Missile Center.
  • Appointed Director: Patrick Mason, Department of the U.S. Army.
  • Appointed Director: Prof. Marilyn J. Smith, Georgia Institute of Technology.
  • Appointed Director: Yolanka Wulff, Community Air Mobility Initiative (CAMI).

 The next meeting of the VFS Board will be convened at the society’s 79th Annual Forum & Technology Display, to be held 16 through 18 May 2023 in West Palm Beach, Florida. The event’s keynote speech will be made by Dr. Bhagwat.

Parties interested in learning more about the VFS and its upcoming Annual Forum & Technology Display are invited to visit the society’s website via the FMS link below.

Established in 1943 as the American Helicopter Society by the visionaries of the early helicopter industry, the Vertical Flight Society espouses the belief that technological cooperation and collaboration are essential to the development and proliferation of new aircraft technologies and types. As the American Helicopter Society championed the advent and rise of the conventional helicopter, so the Vertical Flight Society fosters the advancement of today’s revolutionary rotorcraft.



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