October 16, 2013
By Jim Moore
Craig Fuller, whose tenure as AOPA’s fourth president concluded in September, has been named chairman of Redbird Flight Simulations, a Texas firm with a track record of developing innovative flight training products.
“Soon after starting Redbird Flight Simulations eight years ago, we realized that achieving our vision would take us far beyond engineering simulators and software development,” said Redbird CEO Todd Willinger in a news release. “That’s why we’re thrilled to announce Craig Fuller as the new Chairman of the Board while our founder, Jerry Gregoire, will focus on expansion strategies, research, and new product development. This addition to our leadership team is exactly what we need to continue and manage our rapid growth.”
Fuller said he was “thrilled to accept the challenge,” and looking forward to Redbird’s next innovations. Fuller replaces Gregoire as chairman. Gregoire will remain active in day-to-day operations, with a new title: “chief pilot,” Redbird announced, reflecting Gregoire’s penchant for flying on company business.
Fuller announced his plan to step down from the AOPA presidency early in the year, giving the board time for a nationwide search that led to Mark Baker’s appointment Sept. 6.
“For those of us in love with the technology, success is a kind of a trap. The more success you have, the bigger your company gets, the less time you have to touch the technology,” Gregoire said in a news release. “To succeed in this environment, we need to constantly recruit top-flight leaders with experience and skills beyond the strictly technical. Craig’s combination of aviation and business savvy makes him the ideal choice to [ensure] our continued success.”
Fuller was voted in as Redbird’s chairman during a company board meeting held in Fort Worth, Texas, during AOPA Aviation Summit 2013. He will deliver the keynote address at Redbird’s Migration Flight Training Conference Oct. 28 through 30.
Redbird focused on cutting aviation costs at its third-annual Migration conference in San Marcos, Texas.
PC simulator expert Bruce Williams covered the multitude of ways simulation can help pilots in a seminar at AOPA Aviation Summit.
With this month’s column, I conclude five enjoyable years in the left seat at AOPA. You and I have shared an extraordinary journey through some very challenging times.
AOPA thanks our members for their continued support in protecting the freedom to fly.