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Our Leaders


Leaders serve on charitable boards for various reasons. Our trustees took a moment to share insight into why they lead this organization and why they’re passionate about helping young people.

Hart Fessenden – Retired, Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation

Aviation is easy to get excited about. I have been flying small planes for 40 years, starting while I was in college. I made my career working in airline banking, financing the big jets for the world’s major air carriers.

There are many different career paths in aviation to follow: pilot, maintenance technician, airline management, software developer, aircraft and systems designer, flight instructor, investor, and even banker to name a few. Sorting through all these options and picking the best one is easier with an experienced mentor and guide. Pathways provides support for making the right decision and getting the optimal result.



Josh Flatley – President, XVector, Ltd.

I serve on the Pathways to Aviation board because I share the vision of creating “Pathways” to careers in aviation through mentorship, alliances, and hard work. The evolving framework of the organization is consistent and gets results!

Aviation (particularly the U.S. Air Force) has provided more opportunities than I could have imagined growing up. I have entered a stage in life where it is important to share those opportunities with others; this is my venue to “pay it forward”.



Eric Henry – President, Cornerstone Consulting

Pathways to Aviation is the only organization that I am aware of that seeks out students and jobseekers equipping and connecting them to the aviation industry! Pathways brings to the aviation industry their future trained, driven and passionate workforce!

Changing Lives! Working with students and jobseekers encouraging and helping them identify their WHY and equipping them to get out there and fulfill it!



Thomas J. Hall, Board Chairman – Attorney, Law Offices of Thomas Hall

My Dad was a Captain with Western Airlines. Thus my interest in aviation.
Many years ago, I was talking to a private high school math teacher who had an earlier military career in aviation.
He created a Flight Club and would take his students on tours of the Reno-Tahoe International Airport, the FAA Tower and actually talked to some of the airport executives.
He asked me to speak at one of his classes, which I did. He mentioned that it was hard for students to find a way to aviation, and they needed a “path”. To be a doctor, one only needed to go to college, medical school, pass a test and then you were a doctor. Same with being a lawyer, etc.
But there was no clear “Pathway to Aviation”.
Later, I met a math professor at the University of Nevada, Reno, and we started talking about the same thing. He was so excited with the concept, we then and there coined the name and created Pathways to Aviation.
So, for over 20 years, I have been involved in promoting aviation for our next generations and supporting Pathways to Aviation in every way I can.
Thanks to everyone who supports bringing aviation to the students and dreamers of an exciting tomorrow in aviation.



Bob Larkin, Board Treasurer – President, Sierra Romeo Aviation

I have for many decades now been active in General Aviation as a pilot, instructor, Designated Pilot Examiner, Trustee of the Airport Authority, aircraft owner, and aviation business owner. Pathways’ provides a vital role in connecting those that want to become involved in aviation with those that are involved in aviation.

While experienced pilots, instructors, and owners provide the knowledge and capabilities to sustain aviation, it is the youth that provide the excitement and energy to advance aviation to new heights and opportunities.



Paul McFarlane – Executive Director, Challenger Learning Center of Northern Nevada



Greg Meisinger – Pilot, American Airlines

I am ecstatic to be provided the opportunity to serve on the Pathways to Aviation board and be a part of a program that helps connect people and provide the resources to achieve their goals! I feel honored to have an avenue in which I can provide some benefit to enrich an industry that means so much to me.

The aviation industry, most importantly the people, has been such a source of personal joy and ongoing lifetime fulfillment. A program like Pathways to Aviation was not available to me when I was younger and I am passionate about helping formulate the connections, ideas, and skills that open the doors to all facets of this industry for others.



Marily Mora – Chief Aviation Strategy Officer, The Port Authority of New York & New Jersey

I am interested in educating a broader spectrum of young people on the diverse career opportunities in Aviation. Pathways to Aviation is building its network nationwide on not only the opportunities, but the steps to achieve the goals through scholarship information, networking and job hunting skills.

I have been fortunate to have a career in aviation for over 30 years. It is a dynamic and ever changing environment. Aviation is fundamental to the success of our economy in moving people and goods. I stumbled on aviation as a career, but would like to help young people to make a conscious career path to choose aviation.


Leah Ochs – Manufacturing Engineer Manager, RIX Industries

I believe strongly in the mission of Pathways to Aviation and am honored to serve on the board. The local aviation community, and abroad, is vastly growing and adapting to the changing world around us. It is exciting to be a part of a strong team that is dedicated to the pursuit of expanding the impact of aviation and showcasing its limitless opportunities.

I discovered a love for engaging the next generation in aviation early on in my career. I had limited exposure to aviation and STEM related career fields when I was younger and I want to change that for the next generation. I love to see students get excited about opportunities they never knew existed, and encouraging everyone to explore the aviation industry!


Joe Rajacic, Board Vice Chair – Retired 747 Captain, United Airlines

I have known Pete and Eric for almost 10 years and realize aligning myself with Pathways will result in the best potential for reaching and helping the most job seekers. Pathways has the reach, connections, partners, members and mentors to accomplish the goal of introducing young people to careers in aviation.

I have had a rewarding career in aviation, from flight instruction, working as an aircraft design engineer, A&P mechanic, NASA test pilot, corporate pilot to flying Captain on the Boeing 747-400. Now it is time to give back and provide the passion, inspiration, encouragement and help for those interested in the multitude of aviation careers.


Informing, inspiring, and engaging aviation's next generation.