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Featured Member

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Ashley Whitmore, CMC

Airport Manager
City of Tehachapi








When did you join SWAAAE and what motivated you to do so?

I joined SWAAAE in mid-2020 because I believe networking and information sharing is vital to the success of our airports.

What is your professional background?


I have worked in local government since 2008, beginning my career in the City Clerks department. In 2015 I began assisting in the management of the airport and was officially named Airport Manager in 2018. Along with the airport, I currently oversee the City Clerks department and IT management team and serve as ACA's Region 3 Board Member.

Who was the greatest influence in your aviation career?


My greatest influence would have to be my grandmother. Although she was not personally in the aviation industry, she did work in local government. It was watching her drive and tenacity that pushed me to where I am today.

Do you have any favorite past times or hobbies, and/or would you like to share about your family or pets?

I am married with three children, ages 16, 10 and 8. We enjoy camping, swimming, going to the beach and watching movies.

What is your favorite seat in an airplane?


The one with a vacant seat next to it!

Past Featured Members

Rosemary Barnes, A.A.E.




Owner

PRoComms
Director of Public Relations
Aviatrix Communications

Read more about Rosemary

When did you join SWAAAE and what motivated you to do so?

I joined SWAAAE in 2015, coinciding with (finally!) completing my accreditation. I appreciated the support and acceptance of those I met while studying for the panel interview. I wanted to pay it forward to others who enjoy aviation as much as I do.

What is your professional background?

All-things airports! I have been blessed with an amazing 30-year career. I was bitten and smitten by Jet-A early in life when my family emigrated from Northern Ireland. We settled next to SFO, which played an important role in my and family members' lives for employment, and landings and takeoffs.

SJSU and SJC is where my career really took off, from FBO experience to roles in Operations, Property Management and where I ultimately settled into MarCom.

My true passion is telling the stories and communicating the important work airports do in supporting the communities they serve.

Who was the greatest influence in your aviation career?

There are so many to thank and acknowledge, but these three top my list:

Jerry Bennett, who gave me my big break in Operations at SJC - both an internship and later a Manager-on-Duty role.

Marily Mora, A.A.E., who I viewed as a mentor as I transitioned from Operations to MarCom at SJC.

Steven Grossman, A.A.E, was always very supportive of me during our time together at OAK. I appreciated Steve's charismatic leadership and his incredible way of connecting and engaging with everyone he met.

Do you have any favorite past times or hobbies, and/or would you like to share about your family or pets?

I lead a very active life connecting and spending time with family and friends. Hiking, swimming, book clubbing, wine tasting, dog walking and traveling (pre-Covid) keep me busy.

I'm enjoying building my new PRoComms business, a little bit every day.

What is your favorite seat in an airplane?

Aisle, definitely. Climbing over fellow passengers during a long flight is on my must-avoid list.

JUDY M. ROSS, A.A.E., C.A.E.



Assistant Director
Mineta San Jose International Airport

Read more about Judy

When did you join SWAAAE and what motivated you to do so?

When I moved to California (the first time), my supervisor was working on the SWAAAE Summer Conference and encouraged me to participate. I think I started working on the conference even before I was an official member!.

What is your professional background?

I have worked the aviation industry my entire career. I am starting my six year at Mineta San Jose International Airport; three years as the Assistant Director and two years as Deputy Director, Planning and Development. In addition, I served as Deputy Aviation Director at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport for seven years; Director of Airport Planning and Development at Little Rock National Airport for two years; and while at San Diego International Airport for 10 years, she was Manager of Program Controls, as well as holding other positions. This year I serve as your President of the Southwest Chapter of AAAE, where I am also a Certified Airport Executive (C.A.E.). Also, I serve on the Board of Directors of the American Association of Airport Executives (AAAE) where I am an Accredited Airport Executive (A.A.E.). I earned a Master’s degree in Aviation Management from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, and a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from the University of North Dakota.

Who was the greatest influence in your aviation career?

I have had many influences in my career, some great and some I would call "learning experiences". I would say my first positive influence was Arlene B. Feldman from New Jersey. Early in my career, she was an example of what you can achieve with focus and working hard toward your goals.

Do you have any favorite past times or hobbies, and/or would you like to share about your family or pets?

I like to travel and see new places. I also like to hike and see where a trail takes me.

What is your favorite seat in an airplane?

Aisle-I like my space.

DAVID SPERLING




Senior Aviation Planner
C&S Companies, Inc.

Read more about David

When did you join SWAAAE and what motivated you to do so?

I joined SWAAAE in 2000 to connect with the airport and consultant community when I moved back to the Phoenix area.

What is your professional background?

I have been an airport consultant for 23 years; 18 years with a large multi-national firm, and the past 5 years at C&S. I have also taught the airport management and planning curriculum at Arizona State University for the past 7 years, and served on the Chandler Airport Commission for 7 years and am serving my third term as Chair.

Who was the greatest influence in your aviation career?

I had a professor in college for several courses whose passion for aviation affirmed that this was the field for me. Also, my first boss allowed me to grow by giving me responsibilities and project management assignments beyond what I expected.

Do you have any favorite past times or hobbies, and/or would you like to share about your family or pets?

Outside of work, I spend my time with family. My wife, Lee Ann, and I celebrated our 20 year anniversary earlier this year. We have two daughters, Amelia (16) and Sophie (13) who are active student-athletes, and we spend a lot of time at the soccer field and volleyball court. Our golden-mix, Ruby, and Stella the cat seem to get a lot of our attention, also.

What is your favorite seat in an airplane?

I recently switched from window to aisle.

Jennifer Maples, A.A.E., C.A.E., A.C.E.



Aviation Superintendent 

City of Phoenix Aviation Department

Read more about Jennifer

When did you join SWAAAE and what motivated you to do so?

I joined SWAAAE in 1997 when PHX was hosting the Summer Conference, and my boss, Debbie Klein, was the conference chair… and I’ve been grateful for it ever since!

What is your professional background?

I’ve been with PHX my entire airport career - 23 years and counting! I am currently the Facilities & Services Planning Superintendent overseeing several airport maintenance, operational readiness, capital planning, and asset management functions.

Prior to PHX, I worked for Evergreen Airlines, Cutter Aviation, American Express, and my favorite – as a station manager for Papillon Helicopters in Hawaii!

I have a B.S. in Aviation Business Administration with a Certificate of Emphasis in Aviation Safety from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, and became an Accredited Airport Executive in 2007.

Who was the greatest influence in your aviation career?

Two important people instilled a love for aviation in me at a young age. My father worked in the industry my entire life, first as an A&P at North American Rockwell at LAX, and then he moved on to management at Hughes Airwest, then Republic, then Northwest Airlines. Later, a dear friend of mine from high school, David Santo, had his pilot’s license before he could drive! He flew gliders at Turf Soaring School, and I was a benefactor, getting to fly with him. He was the one who convinced me to go to Embry Riddle, and the rest is history!

Do you have any favorite past times or hobbies, and/or would you like to share about your family or pets?

I love to travel and explore new places! I also really enjoy hiking, photography, and believe it or not, I am a quilter. I’ve made several dozen quilts and never kept one – they were all gifted to others.

What is your favorite seat in an airplane?

First Class! But more often than not, I have to settle for a window seat.

William J Critchfield, A.A.E., C.A.E.



Retired

TOA, Los Angeles County Airports (5 Airports), KKIA Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, San Bernardino County (7 Airports), FAA Airports Safety
Read more about William

When did you join SWAAAE and what motivated you to do so?

I recall it was 1959, the original California Association of Airports - professional relations and information exchange.

What is your professional background?

Airport Operations and Safety (USMC Combat Engineer), Business Administration (BA)

Who was the greatest influence in your aviation career?

My first boss, Jack Egan, A.A.E.

Do you have any favorite past times or hobbies, and/or would you like to share about your family or pets?

Golf, sports, shooting

What is your favorite seat in an airplane?

Jump seat (can't do that anymore), a seat near the rear (aft of the wing).

Patrick Murphy




Environmental Graphic Designer/Owner
115 DEGREES WEST

Read more about Patrick

When did you join SWAAAE and what motivated you to do so?

Member since 2013. I joined SWAAAE as as result of attending AzAA conferences and AAAE conferences. I found out many of the same great people I had met were also SWAAAE members and I wanted more opportunities to interact with those people.

What is your professional background?

I have an Industrial Design Degree and Economics Minor from the University of Cincinnati. I began designing signage and wayfinding for Marriott Corporation in 1988 and continued on that track until designing for ATL and their complete signage redo prior to the 1996 Olympic Games. Although I did work on projects for the Olympic Games after ATL, it was the ATL project which created the foundation for a career in Aviation Signage and Wayfinding.

Who was the greatest influence in your aviation career?

Jennifer Maples of PHX has been the greatest influence in my aviation career; first by emphasizing the need for signage design to prioritize the long term maintenance parameters of signs and building in the flexibility needed in the airport environment. Secondly, Mrs. Maples encouraged me to become more involved in organizations such as SWAAAE.

Do you have any favorite past times or hobbies, and/or would you like to share about your family or pets?

Well of course Design, all types of Design, interests me on a daily basis whether as a professional, consumer or admirer. Playing Golf and supporting the Vegas Golden Knights as well as the Dallas Cowboys provides competitive and emotional outlets. Finally, I would be happy to share my dogs with you.; just let me know where you want me to send them.

What is your favorite seat in an airplane?

Window seat either at the front of the plane or in about row 8; the first row for the second flight attendant to collect my drink ticket.

Sean Moran, C.M., ACE



Assistant Airport Manager
City of Livermore - Livermore Municipal Airport

Read more about Sean

When did you join SWAAAE and what motivated you to do so?

I joined in 2010 as an Academic Member, attending California State University - Los Angeles.

What is your professional background?

When I was attending college, I started out as a Passenger Services Agent for Hallmark Aviation Services at LAX, working for both Emirates and Spirit Airlines. I participated in two internships with the City of Los Angeles in the Van Nuys Airport Noise Office, and in the Airport Operations Department for the John Wayne Airport. My first full-time job was working as an Airport Operations Officer for the Ventura County Department of Airports, where I was fortunate enough to "wear many different hats" and I credit my time there to the experiences & lessons learned. I moved back home to the SF Bay Area, and spent a few years working for the City of Hayward as an Airport Operations and Noise Specialist. Before working for the City of Livermore, I spent 2 years at Norman Y. Mineta San Jose International Airport as an Airport Duty Manager.

Who was the greatest influence in your aviation career?

My biggest influence has definitely been Mr. Curt Castagna, President/CEO of The Aeroplex-Aerolease Group. Mr. Castagna has provided invaluable advice and mentorship through just-about every step of my journey so far. Before I made any job change, I have sought out his advice and guidance. I am humbly grateful for all of the support he has given to me, and many of his other students.

Do you have any favorite past times or hobbies, and/or would you like to share about your family or pets?

I am a very active person. Over the past few years I have become "addicted" to Obstacle Course Racing (Spartan, Tough Mudder, Etc....) and I consider this sport to be a metaphor to life. During everyone's journey, we meet obstacles along the way. When we meet these obstacles, we can either give up, exit the course, and go home, or conquer that obstacle, and push forward towards the finish line.

What is your favorite seat in an airplane?

If anyone wants to get me a Christmas Gift, I'm a size "Business Class" in airplane tickets.

Wayne Armoogam




President

Luminous Egress

Read more about Wayne

When did you join SWAAAE and what motivated you to do so?

Mid 2019 - was told by another member that it would be the best organization to expose our luminous technology.

What is your professional background?

BSE Arizona State University, Executive Education Program at W P Carey School of Business at ASU.

Do you have any favorite past times or hobbies, and/or would you like to share about your family or pets?

Golf. Travel. I have a wife and two teenage daughters.

What is your favorite seat in an airplane?

Window

Photo: Tehachapi Municipal Airport
Tehachapi, CA

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