Two SAFE Members Among the Winners!

LONGMONT, Colorado (8 March 2010) – In each of the past 47 years, the General Aviation Awards program and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) have recognized a small group of aviation professionals in the fields of flight instruction, aviation maintenance, avionics, and safety for their contributions to aviation, education, and flight safety. This awards program is a cooperative effort between the FAA and more than a dozen industry sponsors.

The FAA administrator will present the national awards in July during a “Theater in the Woods” program at EAA AirVenture 2010 in Oshkosh, Wisconsin.  Included in the prize package for all four national winners is an all expense paid trip to Oshkosh for the recipient and a guest to attend the awards presentation and other GA Awards activities.

“These awards highlight the important role played by these individuals in promoting aviation education and flight safety,” said JoAnn Hill, General Aviation Awards Committee chairperson.  “The awards program sponsors are pleased that these outstanding aviation professionals will receive the recognition they so richly deserve before their peers in Oshkosh.”

2010 NATIONAL CFI OF THE YEAR: Master CFI and SAFE Charter Member Jeffrey Robert Moss of Los Angeles, California, is the 2010 National Certificated Flight Instructor of the Year.  Born and raised in Miami, Florida, Jeff’s passion for aviation began at the tender age of seven.  While on a family trip, Jeff remembers looking out the terminal window at a huge PanAm Boeing 747, the aircraft that would take the family from Miami to Los Angeles.  Once on board, he made his way up the spiral staircase and onto the flight deck.  He sailed past the flight engineer and proclaimed, “Hi Mister Captain, I’m Jeffrey Moss, I’m seven years old and I’m here to learn everything!”  Thus, his love affair with flying began.

When Cirrus introduced the first general aviation aircraft to have a full glass Avidyne cockpit, Jeff joined the Cirrus Owners and Pilots Association (COPA) and became an early member of the Cirrus Standardized Instructor Program.  He was also one of the first factory trained instructors on the Lancair Certified Columbia 350/400 (now the Cessna Corvalis) and was a co-creator and chief flight instructor for the Columbia Recurrent Training Program.

Today, Jeff holds five single pilot jet type ratings.  He is an independent instructor and mentor pilot on the Cessna Citation Mustang & CJ series, Eclipse 500, Embraer Phenom 100/300 and Hawker Beechcraft Premier IA.  He specializes in training piston pilots for their initial single pilot jet type rating.  He trains mostly out of Santa Monica (SMO), Van Nuys (VNY) and Burbank (BUR) airports.  He continues to work extensively as an aviation educator and is a sought after aviation speaker.  His company, Flying Like the Pros (, produces computer-based avionics training programs.

2010 NATIONAL FAA SAFETY TEAM REPRESENTATIVE OF THE YEAR: Master CFI and SAFE member Thomas P Turner exemplifies the highest standard of professionalism in the field of aviation safety and education. Tom’s involvement in aviation began while a US Air Force officer by earning his initial pilot certification in 1985 and becoming a certificated flight instructor in 1988.  Today, he holds an airline transport pilot certificate with an AMEL rating as well as CFI, CFI-I, and MEI.

Since 1996, he has been an outspoken aviation safety advocate while also organizing and conducting safety programs for WINGS credit nationwide.  He now serves as a FAASTeam Lead Representative in the Wichita area where he conducts WINGS seminars, writes prolifically, and maintains aviation safety websites.  He has also earned Basic, Advanced, and Master-level WINGS accreditation through the FAA’s Pilot Proficiency Program.

Currently, Tom is the executive director of the American Bonanza Society ( ) which represents approximately 10,000 Beech aircraft owners, mechanics and enthusiasts around the world.  He is responsible for the day-to-day operation of the Society as well as all technical and educational member support functions.  His typical day at the Society’s Wichita office includes reading and writing e-mails, strategic planning, editing and managing the monthly ABS Magazine and website,  working with regulatory agencies and other associations, developing educational and technical support materials, and assisting members with piloting and technical questions.

2010 NATIONAL AMT OF THE YEAR: Neil Nederfield of Fairfield, New Jersey, has been an airframe and powerplant (A&P) technician for 45 years and has held inspection authorization (IA) for 15 of those years.  Neil and his son Sean own C & W Aero Services, an FAA Certified Repair Station, located at Essex County Airport (CDW) in Caldwell, New Jersey.

A four-year tour in the United States Navy launched this Viet Nam veteran’s career in aviation maintenance.  Neil attended schools for aviation airframe sheet metal and paint corrosion control and then served with VA72 aboard aircraft carriers from 1965 to 1969 working on Douglas A-4 Skyhawks.  After an honorable discharge as a Petty Officer 2nd Class, he continued to work in aviation maintenance.  Following ten years of employment at C & W Electronics, Neil became the owner and manager of C & W Aero Services at Essex County Airport in 1983.

C & W Aero Services ( ) is a fixed base operation and FAA Certified Repair Station specializing in aircraft modifications, painting, annual / 100-hour inspections, avionics installations, and heavy sheet metal repairs.  They are also a factory authorized service center for Hawker Beechcraft Corporation, Mooney Airplane Company, and New Piper Aircraft as well as most major avionics manufacturers.  Neil and his son Sean are co-owners of the company while their wives, Gail & Jennifer respectively, share the responsibilities for office management.  C & W Aero employs 11 full time and two part time workers.

2010 NATIONAL AVIONICS TECHNICIAN OF THE YEAR: Kirk H Peterson has been selected by the General Aviation Awards program as the 2010 National Avionics Technician of the Year.  He currently holds a Federal Communications Commission license with Radar endorsement, an Airframe and Powerplant (A&P) Technician Certificate with inspection authorization (IA), a Repairman Certificate, and has over 25 years of avionics maintenance and repair experience.

For the past 20 years, Kirk has been employed by the University of North Dakota’s John D Odegard School of Aerospace Sciences ( ).  He is the avionics manager of an FAA Part 145 repair station that maintains over 100 aircraft ranging from Supercubs to turbine helicopters and turbine aircraft that are used by UND’s flight training department.  Kirk is responsible for maintaining UND’s state-of-the-art avionics lab.  The avionics shop has grown from one person in 1990 to its current staff of three full-time avionics technicians and three part-time repairmen.

Kirk mentors UND student interns each semester and assists academic professors with demonstrations of and training in avionics systems.  He works closely with the FAA at the Fargo FSDO and the FAA Aircraft Certification Office in Chicago to gain approval and documentation of installations and modifications to the UND aircraft.

SAFE is a proud sponsor of the General Aviation Awards Program — Congratulations to all of this year’s winners!

About the author 

Rich Stowell (Lifetime Member)

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