Don Kaye
Don Kaye

SAFE#: 0123

Hometown: Santa Clara, California

Home Airport: KSJC

Occupation: Flight Instructor, Master CFI


Education: BSEE

Pilot Certificates: ATP (Single and Multiengine), CFI, MEI, IGI, AGI, CE-525S

Airplanes Flying/Flown: (51) different makes and models of airplanes, but specialize in all types of Mooney Airplanes. I own a Mooney Bravo.

Educational Specialty: Advanced ratings, insurance checkouts, recurrency training, advanced avionics checkouts.

Q & A

What drew you to aviation? I liked the idea of flying ever since I tried being Superman and fell off the chair in my first efforts to fly when I was a child.

How long have you been involved in aviation education? Over 15 years and 4,700 hours of flight instruction given.

What’s your favorite part of what you do in aviation education? Teaching the art of flight

What’s your least favorite part of what you do in aviation education? Repetitive nature of teaching landings, when students don’t “get” it.

Do you have a memorable aviation experience you’d like to share? Flying back from Los Angeles one evening and watching the moon rise on the horizon to the east and the sun setting on the horizon in the west — at the same time.

Why did you join SAFE? To belong to an organization whose interest is to promote the education of aviators.

What would you like to see change in aviation? I’d like to see the FAA come more into the 21st Century regarding aviation testing. Avionics has changed dramatically in the past 5 years. Testing has mostly remained 20 years behind the times.

Any suggestions on how the above might be accomplished? Resources should be placed into realistically updating the knowledge examinations and PTSs to reflect these technological advances.

Any accomplishments in, or noteworthy contributions to aviation and/or aviation education you’d like to mention? Master Flight Instructor since 2002.

Who are your role models in aviation? Robert Goldin, my Mentor Instructor.