Author Archives: Pilot One

King Online Drone Course Customers Can Now Study When Offline Too

Screen Shots of the recently released KING Companion App for the King Schools’ Online Drone Pilot License Test Prep Course. The app enables drone pilots who are preparing for the FAA Part 107 Remote Pilot Knowledge Test to download their lessons, including all text, graphics, videos and post lesson quizzes, and take them when offline. When back online, course progress is automatically synchronized with King’s servers and available from any other device.

May 4, 2018 – AUVSI Conference, Denver CO. – Aspiring Drone Pilots now have a convenient way to continue their studies even when they are offline by using the free KING Companion App for iPad or iPhone together with King Schools’ Online Drone Pilot License Test Prep Course.

The app allows drone pilots who are preparing for the FAA Part 107 Remote Pilot Knowledge Test to download their lessons, including all text, graphics, videos and post lesson quizzes, and take them when offline. When back online, course progress is automatically synchronized with King’s servers and available from any other device.

“The many benefits of online courses include the ability to log on from any connected device or browser and continue your studies right where you left off. The only disappointment has come from folks wanting to still study when they were not online. That last problem is solved with the KING Companion.” commented Barry Knuttila, King’s CEO.

“Folks taking the Drone Test Prep Course are often juggling many responsibilities while they are preparing for their test,” added Martha King, Co-Chairman of King Schools. “Our strategy is to ensure that, given 10-15 minutes, they can make real progress by completing a full lesson. Now they can make that progress even when not connected to the Interne,.” she concluded.

“The King course and the app are designed to help people pass their drone license test. But there is more. It also gives them the tools they need to safely integrate into the National Airspace System, and stay out of trouble with the FAA as well as local authorities. Since it was released in January of 2017, over three thousand drone operators have passed the test using our course,” said John King, Co-Chairman of King Schools.

The free app is available by searching “King Companion” in the Apple App store. The Drone Pilot Test Prep course sells for $129 on

About King Schools:

Over the last four decades, pilots at all levels have enjoyed King Schools´ clear, simple and fun video courses.  King Schools has helped hundreds of thousands of pilots pass their FAA tests and is the world’s leader in FAA test preparation.  It is estimated as much 50% of the pilots flying in the U.S. today have learned with a King course.


Sarina Houston Awarded the WAI Martha King Scholarship for Women Flight Instructors

(L-R Martha King, Sarina Houston) Sarina Houston was awarded the third King Schools/WAI scholarship at the annual Women in Aviation International Conference in Reno, Nevada. The scholarship has an $18,000 retail value.

April 27, 2018 San Diego, California – For Immediate Release

Sarina Houston of Pittsboro, North Carolina was awarded the 3rd Martha King Scholarship for Women Flight Instructors during the annual Women in Aviation International Conference. This scholarship consists of $5,000 toward flight training and free, lifetime access to all King Schools courses including FIRCs for life. The value is over $18,000.

Sarina’s career has been focused on aviation starting in high school. In her words from her scholarship application essay, “I fell in love with flying around the mountains as a teenager, and I was curious enough about aviation to ask for a job at the airport when I was in high school. As I progressed through my ratings and a Masters degree, I learned that I was also passionate about education and teaching. Along the way, I was afforded opportunities that I never imagined and discovered things about myself that I never thought possible—that I could be a great teacher and a great pilot, that I could be as good of a teacher or pilot as the guy next to me.

“Through scholarships from ERAU and Women in Aviation and encouragement and mentorship from people I’ve always looked up to like John & Martha King, I’ve been able to make my dream a reality. Fellow educators and aviators supported me along the way. They truly believed in me when I didn’t believe in myself.

“As a flight instructor today, when the aviation industry needs pilots more than ever before, I want nothing more than to pass along the same knowledge, enthusiasm, and scholarships that I’ve been graciously given to tomorrow’s aviators. The Martha King Scholarship for Female Aviators will allow me to continue to do that.”

While living in England in 2008, Sarina missed the comradery of her fellow pilots. So she became the Founder and President of the Box D Chapter of Women in Aviation, International, at Mildenhall, UK.

Martha King Co-Founder and Co-Chairman of King Schools, said, “Sarina is a poised and accomplished flight instructor, with a passion for aviation. More important, she not only loves to fly, she loves to teach. Sarina has a passion for the people in aviation, and loves figuring out how to give her students insight. To quote from one of her letters of recommendation, ‘Great instructors change lives.’ We believe Sarina is a great instructor who will inspire many learning pilots, and help them attain their dreams of flight.”

John and Lindsey Dreiling, the 2016 WAI scholarship winner joined Martha and Sarina at the scholarship presentation ceremony.

The Martha R. King Scholarship was donated by Martha King who, along with her husband John King, created King Schools in 1974. Applications for the 2018 scholarship will be available on the WAI website in late 2018.


King Schools

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Worldwide (858)-541-2200



King Schools Goes Completely Online

Ensures Every Course Is Always Up-To-Date

April 12, 2018 SUN ‘n FUN – Lakeland, FL – After over 40 years spent evolving pilot courses from in-person delivery, to VHS tapes, to computer installations, King Schools has said goodbye to discs and is delivering 100% of their pilot courses online.  Co-Chairman Martha King said, “It means you can study on any device and your courses are always up-to-date.”

John King explained, “We have followed two rules that have kept us relevant.  1.  We have always solicited customer feedback and been very responsive to it.  2. We have kept up-to-date with technology.  When we started King Schools 44 years ago, our ‘content delivery system’ was Martha and me speaking to an audience in person.  We would fly to a local airport, teach a few dozen people for a couple of days, and then fly to our next destination and do it all over again.”

“Our first implementation of ‘disruptive technology’ was with VHS tapes,” commented Martha King.  “When we put our in-person classes on videotape, many thousands of pilots suddenly found aviation more accessible and started learning from our courses in the comfort of their homes.  Then when we became the first aviation training company to display full-screen video on computers, learning pilots were able get the benefit of taking quizzes paired with each video lesson, test themselves with sample FAA exams and question databases, and track their progress throughout the course.”

Barry Knuttila, King’s CEO, continued, “Now the Internet provides instant access.  The free KING Companion App lets you download and take lessons offline and when back online, your progress is automatically sync’d with King Schools’ servers and immediately visible from all other devices.  Our customers made it clear that they prefer the advantages of online courses, so it was an easy decision to discontinue the computer-installed, disc option. Online is not the end though. New formats, augmented and virtual reality and unforeseen technological changes will no doubt provide opportunities to deliver even more effective training in our next 40 years.”

King has just rolled out a new Online Aviation Library that puts more than 85 aviation books, cards, manuals, reference materials, and much more into one online package.  The library provides lifetime access with no subscription charges and is continuously updated.  King Schools will continue to expand the library’s resources and customers will automatically receive each update.  Included materials cover a spectrum of aviation knowledge from Private through Professional Pilot. Materials are downloadable and printable and are available from any device.  The KING Online Aviation Library retails for $79.

The Online Aviation Library also replaces the hard-copy books in all KING Get It All Kits (15 versions) making them 100% digital and not subject to shipping charges or sales tax.  These kits provide a deep discount when purchasing a full suite of courses aimed at getting a learning pilot quickly to their goal.

Customers can also add a set of pilot gear to their courses with new King Schools Private Pilot and Instrument Rating Equipment Kits.  These kits include items hand chosen by John & Martha King to fit the needs of learning pilots.  The kits contain products such as IFR training glasses, knee board/clipboard combos, information cards, and more.  The kits retail for $49 each.

Lastly, an updated KING Pilot Communications Course provides optional, easy-to-read subtitles in English or Chinese. This course will help Chinese pilots understand cockpit communications from Alpha to Zulu and retails for $49.


Online Cessna Flight Training System Now Available To All Flight Schools

The new Cessna Instrument Rating Kit contains a MyClip leg strap, IFR clipboard, Custom glass cleaner, Cessna pen and a 1-year Garmin Pilot subscription.

April 12, 2018, SUN ‘n FUN – Lakeland, FL  The latest online edition of the Cessna Flight Training System that has, for decades, helped thousands of pilots achieve their goals, is now available to all flight schools.  The online curriculum integrates flight and ground studies and ensures that learning pilots and their instructors know what they have completed, how they are doing and what’s next. Each course includes video previews of each flying lesson and a home-study ground school and test preparation section.

Learning pilots will especially appreciate the free iPad app that will let them study, prepare for flight lessons and view their progress, even when offline.

Instructors have their own app, allowing them to use their iPhone or iPad to view student status and record flight lessons, even when they are offline.  An audit-for-completion feature gives instructors an easy way to see remaining graduation requirements for each student.  Flight school managers receive access to a full range of business reports to track their flight school’s operational status.

The Cessna Flight Training System has evolved over decades, and was originally used exclusively by Cessna Pilot Centers.  Now, all flight schools, university aviation programs and even high school aviation courses can use the system to support their flight school operations and benefit their learning pilots.

The Cessna Flight Training System includes a suite of Part 141 approvable online courses, ranging from Sport Pilot and Private Pilot all the way through Instrument, Commercial, Multiengine and CFI courses.

“Flight Schools that use the Cessna Flight Training System can offer a consistent, high-quality training experience to any customer from zero experience all the way to being able to earn money and build time as a Flight Instructor.  The portability of the courses across multiple devices, including an offline option through the iPad app, are designed for the digital online environment that our pilots now live in,” commented Martha King, Co-chairman and co-owner of King Schools.

King Schools is also announcing the following updated contents for the latest Cessna Instrument Pilot course package:

  • Instrument Pilot online course
  • Adjustable MyClip leg strap with clips that fit any mobile phone or iPad in vertical or horizontal orientation
  • Full-color durable plastic clipboard printed with useful IFR information that is designed to fit in the MyClip
  • Unique, collectable Cessna airplane photos embossed on glass-cleaning cloths
  • Useful cockpit information cards
  • Updated materials in the Cessna Online Pilot Library
  • An IFR Planning Pad, Cessna Pen/Stylus and the Garmin Pilot Premium 1 Year License

John King, Co-chairman and co-owner, commented, “In addition to the digital products, pilots receive a package of gear suited for current pilot training.  For instance, the IFR kit now comes with an adjustable leg strap with clips that allow pilots to use the included IFR clipboard, their phone, iPad, or other devices either vertically or horizontally.  Cessna Flight Training System customers will appreciate the great utility provided by the new gear and materials.”


Pete Muntean Awarded the National Association of Flight Instructors and King Schools Scholarship

(L-R John King, Pete Muntean, Martha King, Bob Meder) John & Martha King, Co-Founders and Co-Chairman of King Schools and Robert Meder, Chairman of the National Association of Flight Instructors congratulate Pete Muntean, the 2017 winner of the NAFI/King Schools Scholarship.

April 12, 2018, SUN ‘n FUN – Lakeland, FL – Pete Muntean of Washington, D.C. is the winner of the King Schools and the National Association of Flight Instructors (NAFI) 2017 CFI scholarship.  This scholarship consists of $5,000 toward flight training and free, lifetime access to all King Schools courses, including lifetime FIRCs.  The estimated value is over $18,000.

A Certificated Flight Instructor since September 2017, Pete is actively teaching with GT Aviation at Potomac Airfield in Maryland. When he is not flying, Pete covers transportation as television news reporter for WUSA9 in Washington. He regularly uses his aviation knowledge on news stories and advocates for general aviation on social media. Previously, Pete covered state and national politics for WGAL in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Pete has emulated his career after his mentor and fellow pilot Miles O’Brien and was his intern at CNN.

In his scholarship application essay, Pete wrote, “I was 18 years old on October 14, 2006 when I watched my mother, aerobatic pilot Nancy Lynn, crash and burn at an air show.  Her sudden death not only orphaned me, it attacked my once immeasurable excitement about flying.  Having soloed exactly two months prior, I considered quitting flying altogether.  I was stunned.”

“In the years since, I have found the only antidote to the trauma– the fear, guilt, and doubt– is by flying.  I became a private pilot less than a year after the crash, earned an instrument rating in 2008, and a commercial rating in 2011.  Through practice I have gained perspective.  Through continued training I have gained confidence.”

When Pete learned he had been awarded the scholarship, he commented, “I’m very grateful. Being recognized by two prestigious aviation institutions is an awesome honor, albeit bittersweet. My late mother, a NAFI member and aerobatic flight instructor, would be thrilled. But this is not about me. Demystifying aviation through every medium possible is key to its future. I promise this investment will pay dividends.”

John King, Co-Founder and Co-Chairman of King Schools, said, “Pete has a demonstrated ability to overcome adversity and inspire others.  He is a fabulous communicator.  He will make profound and lasting contributions to the aviation community.”

Robert Meder, the Chairman of NAFI, said, “Pete exemplifies what it means to give back to aviation.  To be able to overcome a traumatic personal tragedy and turn it to something positive is a tribute to both his courage and his mother’s legacy.  Pete’s desire to share his joy in aviation while teaching and clarifying best practices is admirable in no small measure.  We at NAFI are proud of his achievements and are delighted that, through the King Schools NAFI scholarship, we are able to recognize his efforts.  Through his example, Pete Muntean is a mentor to us all.”

Pete is a CFI who has logged 1,000 hours.  He will use his scholarship to add an Instrument Instructor (CFII) rating to his flight instructor certificate as well as continue his education in aerobatics with the goal of teaching upset recovery and competition aerobatics.

Applications for the 2018 NAFI/King Schools scholarship will become available in August of 2018.  The deadline to submit scholarship applications will be January 2nd 2019.



Article appeared in Flying Magazine January 2018 by John King

“There can be no compromise with safety.” “Safety is our number one priority.” You hear these kinds of quotes all the time from well-meaning people—very often people like the Secretary of Transportation or the Administrator of the FAA. The assertions are meant to be comforting, and they are—especially after a crash. They assure the public of the firm resolve by people in power to do better. The problem is they aren’t, and can’t be, true.

You can’t start an engine without compromising safety. If safety were our number one priority, we’d never move an airplane. Clearly going somewhere is in itself a demonstration that moving the airplane ranks ahead of safety. It would always be safer to stay put. These little intellectual dishonesties tend to end discussion and substitute for genuine analysis on the subject.

It can be discomforting to talk openly and honestly about safety. So we often make false assurances and otherwise deceive ourselves. For instance, we usually talk about safety as if it were an absolute. But absolute safety is an impossibility. In reality, safety is relative. Every activity has a greater or lesser degree of risk associated with it. Still, when someone departs on a trip, we usually say, “Have a safe trip” as a polite expression of goodwill. We say this when we know having a genuinely safe trip is literally impossible.

Not only do we find it uncomfortable to admit to ourselves that we can never achieve absolute safety, but we sometimes utterly lie to ourselves in order to not have to face reality about safety. General aviation pilots used to frequently tell themselves, and their passengers, that the drive to the airport was the most dangerous part of the trip. They wanted to believe that flying their piston-engine general aviation airplane was safer than driving. When it became known that the fatality rate per mile in a general aviation airplane was seven times that of driving, they had a very hard time accepting that reality. (On the other hand, for various reasons travel on the airlines is in fact seven times safer than travel on the roads.)

Sometimes our self-deception on the subject of safety just reflects wishful thinking. After a series of commuter airline crashes, the Administrator of the FAA attempted to mandate one level of safety for little airplanes as well as big airplanes. The problem is that it is not possible for a small airplane to be as safe as a Boeing 747. Safety equipment is adds weight. A little airplane can’t carry the weight of the safety provisions of a 747. Plus, safety is expensive. A little airplane can’t afford the cost of safety equipment the way a bigger plane can. But who wants to tell that to someone about to fly in a smaller airplane?

On the other hand, when noted Australian thought-leader and avid pilot (weight-shift trikes, single-engine airplanes, helicopters, and jets) Dick Smith was Chairman of the Australian Civil Aviation Safety Authority, he steered people away from disingenuous talk about safety. He shocked people by talking about “affordable safety.” His point was that when safety becomes too expensive there can be a net reduction in safety. When excessively expensive safety measures are mandated, the cost of flying goes up. At some point people take less-safe surface transportation instead, and fatalities go up.

Another problem with the way we talk about safety has to do with how safety advice is normally given. It often provides very inadequate guidance. Safety advice usually takes a negative approach, stating what you cannot do rather than focusing on positive things you should do. In many cases it is limited to a hodgepodge of rules and sayings. The rules and sayings may all be good, but they are not adequate, because they fail to provide the big picture and structure.

Moreover, safety advice can even generate resistance. It can be preachy—taking on an off-putting air of smugness and superiority. It is not uncommon for advisors to suggest that someone does not exercise proper “judgment” or “aeronautical decision-making.” This comes across as a vague, demeaning criticism, but once again, with very little guidance.

So what is the alternative?

We need to change our vocabulary. In nearly every case, it is more insightful and helpful to talk about risk management. The concept of risk management suggests a proactive habit of identifying risks, assessing them, and exploring mitigation strategies for them. Those words “risk management” provide much-needed guidance about what people should do to get a safer outcome, in a way that the condescending criticisms, and emphasis on “safety,” do not.

One of the problems about the way we sometimes use the word “safety” is that if someone wants something done a certain way, they can often just simply trot out the word “safety,” or for that matter, “security,” and get carte blanche with little analysis. But the words “risk management” require a more thoughtful discussion—including in most cases identification and assessment of the risks and the appropriateness of the mitigation strategies.

When an aviation tragedy occurs, rather than trying to reassure and comfort people by promising things that are not possible, aviation leaders should say, “Our job is to understand the risk management failures that allowed this to happen and see that they do not occur again.”

Much to their credit, the FAA’s Flight Standards Service has embraced “risked-based decision-making” as one of its core values. The idea is that in this business of creating rules about how aviation should be run, they will now think in terms of the risks of an activity. Every safety measure has a trade-off in loss of fun and utility. When risked-based decision-making is a core value, that trade-off will be taken into consideration during rule-making.

The good news is that much of the aviation community is now focused on “risk management” rather than “safety.” First, flight schools are moving towards scenario-based training in order to help pilots learn risk management. The idea is to give a learning pilot the tools to habitually identify, assess, and mitigate risk. Then when that pilot is evaluated during the practical test, the FAA’s new Airman Certification Standards (ACS) require their risk management to be evaluated in every area of operation.

Martha and I have been promoting straight talk about safety for years. We finally figured we must be making progress when an attendee came up to us after a talk and said, “Have a relatively safe trip home.”

John & Martha King Receive Crystal Eagle Award

Aero Club of Northern California Presents 35th Award

The award presentation starts at 3:35, the King’s acceptance and talk starts at 5:10.

John and Martha King were presented with the Crystal Eagle Award by the Aero Club of Northern California. (L – R Martha King, John King, Eric Peterson)

John and Martha King, co-chairmen and co-owners of King Schools, were selected as recipients of the 35th annual Crystal Eagle Award presented by the Aero Club of Northern California. The Kings accepted the award on November 18, 2017.They were bestowed this honor for their use of technology, and simple and fun teaching techniques to make aviation knowledge more accessible to pilots the world over. It is estimated that John and Martha have taught aviation to about 50% of the nation’s pilot population.

John and Martha spoke for approximately 30 minutes after receiving their award. The video includes the entirety of the award ceremony and their talk about aviation. Their topics included aviation communities around the world, anecdotes both humorous and serious regarding their own flying adventures and flight challenges. They covered risk management for pilots, checklists, the aviation PAVE systems and helpful information for pilots and CFIs.

The Crystal Eagle Award was first presented by the Aero Club in 1983 to legendary aviator Gen. Jimmy Doolittle. Among past recipients are Gen. Chuck Yeager, Stanley Hiller Jr., Jim Nissen, George Cooper, Jeana Yeager, James S. Ricklefs, Darryl Greenamyer, Clay Lacy, Paul Poberezny, Wayne Handley, Eileen Collins, Sean D. Tucker, Steve Fossett, Brian Shul, C.E. “Bud” Anderson, Julie Clark and Rod Machado.



Article appeared in Flying Magazine November 2017 by Martha King

John and Martha were at Heartland Aviation in Alliance Nebraska for the total eclipse last August.

This normally non-towered airport was probably the busiest it had ever been. The airport needed to land an airplane about every minute and a half to accommodate the arrivals in the time available between sunrise and 10:30 am, when everyone wanted to be on the ground. The trick was getting everyone off the runway and into parking to clear the way for those behind.

The big show was supposed to be at 11:50 am, but John and I had a great time watching all the airplanes long before then. Every kind of airplane you could imagine was joining the party, from homebuilts to jets. And a great party it would be.

Nature would be providing us a rare show—a total solar eclipse. Over any given spot on earth a total solar eclipse occurs about once every 375 years. If either John or I is ever to see another one, there will likely be an airplane involved—like there was this time.

We had read estimates that said as many as 7.4 million people would be competing with each other on the roads to get to the path of totality. We understood there would be traffic jams everywhere. No problem, we said. That’s where general aviation shines—we will fly.

Our plan was to wait and see what the weather looked like the day before the eclipse and then fly to wherever looked most likely to guarantee clear skies. And if the weather turned unexpectedly cloudy on eclipse day, we could fly to somewhere else.

This sounded great in theory, but when we started investigating good locations for eclipse viewing we discovered that some airports had been taking aircraft parking reservations for the eclipse for years—and all expected to have to turn away airplanes. It became obvious that we needed to pick a destination airport and settle in.

The hard part was what airport to choose. A generally good weather forecast for this time of the year would be key. Plus, we wouldn’t want to be caught in traffic jams on the ground on the big day. So we would need to pick an airport away from any major metropolitan areas. There were a lot places in the great American West that would fit the bill.

Gaylene and Jeff Jensen of Heartland Aviation took the time to meet with John and Martha during the eclipse and what most likely will be the busiest time in the history of the planet for the airport at Alliance.

We chose Alliance, Nebraska (AIA)—and we hit the jackpot. The sole FBO, Heartland Aviation, is a wonderful mom-and-pop operation. (As you can imagine, John and I are impressed by mom-and-pop operations.) Gaylene and Jeff Jensen have owned and operated Heartland Aviation for over 27 years, but their connection goes even further back; Jeff had been working there since he was in high school. Their enthusiasm for aviation, and people who fly, brims over in every conversation.

When we made our aircraft parking reservation with Heartland some months before the solar eclipse, Gaylene told us that they already had over 200 single-engine piston aircraft and twenty-five twins and jets scheduled to fly in that morning. Like every other airport in the path of the eclipse, they also fully expected to have to turn away airplanes.

Their biggest problem, though, was not going to be room to park airplanes. It would be getting the arriving aircraft parked in the time available on eclipse morning. Denver Center had told Jeff and Gaylene that careful planning would be required to get airplanes clear of the runways and to parking fast enough to keep the traffic flow up. That’s when they realized the need to land an airplane about every minute and a half. And that didn’t allow for any instrument approaches, or wake turbulence separation.

The lineup at the Alliance Airport was truly extraordinary. Most likely the busiest day the airport will ever have.

When we heard that, we realized we wanted to get there ahead of the crowd. We didn’t want to join the conga-line of airplanes into that airport on the same day as the event. Now we had a real problem. If we were going to come early, we needed a place to stay. As we got into it we realized that with our original plan to fly in and out on the same day we had wasted precious time while everyone else was arranging accommodations.

This is where an FBO in a small community is so valuable. Gaylene had a friend who knew a woman who had just put her house up for rent that weekend. I jumped at the deal, and arranged for us to arrive on Saturday at noon instead of Monday morning.

One of the things that John and I have savored the most about general aviation is the way that small airports introduce you and communities you would never have known otherwise to each other. In Alliance everyone we met welcomed us with great warmth, and with curiosity about where we were from and how we flew our own plane to get there.

Our early arrival gave us the opportunity to settle in and revel in the grand party the city was throwing for its visitors. We enjoyed lots of free musical entertainment, snacked from food trucks, attended a Native American powwow, and thoroughly enjoyed a portable planetarium show designed to explain the eclipse to grade-schoolers.

Lynn Placek, the airport manager of Alliance Airport worked with the Nebraska Department of Aeronautics and the FAA to get the temporary “tower” in Beatrice and Alliance. Placek explains “So we had five people here that manned the tower. They stayed in a camper and were out in the airfield communicating. They were great help!” The Alliance Airport staff helped set up the tower in the back of the Alliance City truck pictured above. That was some incredible ingenuity by everyone cooperating together.

On the day of the event we headed out to the airport early to watch something very special—FAA controllers, operating from a temporary control tower perched atop a city dump truck, skillfully keeping airplanes separated. The controllers had arrived on very short notice when the number of airplanes expected escalated. It is a life-saving service that the U.S. Air Traffic Control System provides to general aviation when they see the need.

Heartland Aviation hosted a fine eclipse party with food, music and a view that was out of this world.

Meanwhile, beginning at 5:00 am Jeff and Gaylene’s crew of 30-plus volunteers guided aircraft to parking, fueled them, and moved pilots and their passengers to the ramp in trams. Plus, Jeff and Gaylene threw a party worthy of the event, including custom-designed eclipse T-shirts and eclipse glasses. For breakfast they served biscuits and gravy or breakfast burritos, and for lunch burgers, hot dogs or chicken breasts—all at unbelievably reasonable prices

The airport was open only to people who had arrived in an airplane, and as the day progressed, the mood reflected the comradery of 400 or so fellow aviators talking with each other about where they came from and how they had fallen in love with flying. We realized we were sharing an event that each of us would remember for the rest of our lives.

The eclipse, of course, did not disappoint. We were powerfully moved by the phenomena that have mesmerized humankind since the beginning of time—a darkening sky and sudden chill accompanied by sunset colors circling the horizon, a corona ring around the sun, and stars appearing during the day.

But what was truly special to those of us who flew in to Alliance was general aviation at its very best. It was a wonderful day brought to us by a couple who had worked for months to make it happen. Gaylene and Jeff created an opportunity for hundreds of aviation enthusiasts to share a very special event in what for all of us was the most fun way imaginable.


ATP Flight School Adds King Schools Courses to Curriculum

King Schools Co- Founders John & Martha King, ATP President Justin Dennis and King Schools CEO Barry Knuttila celebrate the addition of King Schools aviation training courses to the ATP Airline Career Pilot Program (L-R John King, Martha King, Justin Dennis, Barry Knuttila)

December 8, 2017 San Diego, CA – ATP Flight School, the nation’s leader in providing the most efficient training path to a successful airline pilot career, has added King Schools online video courses as a key element in their Airline Career Pilot Program.

On sign-up, students will get a head-start with the King Schools Private Pilot Ground School and Test Prep Course. Then, when they start their flight training, they will be enrolled in the King Schools Private Pilot Practical Test Course, which provides HD video showing a model checkride with an FAA examiner using the new Airmen Certification Standards (ACS). And to provide a leg up in operating the Garmin 430, the standardized GPS platform in the ATP fleet, students will also receive the King Schools Garmin 430 Online Video Course.

The King Schools and ATP teams enjoy an all clear for takeoff moment at ATP’s Florida headquarters .

All three courses are integrated into ATP’s online student portal, where students go for handy access to resources needed during their training.

“We’ve gotten rave responses from our students about the King video courses,” said Justin Dennis, President of ATP. “We take students from zero time to an airline cockpit in about two years. To make that happen we have to be organized and efficient. The clear, simple and practical King courses will be key in helping us accomplish that. We are looking to expand our use of King online video courses in the future,” continued Dennis.

King Schools’ Co-Founder John King commented, “We have some fun with the teaching, and ATP’s students recognize and appreciate that. Also, the courses can be viewed online on any device and are compatible with the King Schools Companion App, which enables offline access with synched progress on iPhones and iPads. The students can take the King courses anywhere and study them anytime, which is exactly what ATP’s students need.”

“We are delighted to be part of ATP’s career pilot training program,” added Martha King, the other Co-Founder of King Schools. “As America’s largest flight school, with over 40 locations, ATP is the leading supplier of professionally trained pilots to the nation’s regional airlines.”

For more information about King Schools Products, go online to

About King Schools
For over 40 years, students and pilots at all levels have enjoyed King Schools´ clear, simple and fun video courses. King Schools estimates that over 50% of the pilots flying in the U.S. today have learned with King. The company is also a leader in on-line pilot certification and avionics training for pilots of high-performance and turbine aircraft.


About ATP Flight School – Training Pilots Since 1984
ATP’s Airline Career Pilot Program prepares pilots for airline careers from zero time to 1,500 hours, with CFI jobs and airline employment. Addressing the pilot shortage, airlines attract new pilots to the industry with ATP’s Tuition Reimbursement Program, where airlines sponsor a portion of pilots’ flight training loan repayment. ATP also provides type-rating and ATP CTP certification. ATP’s 300 aircraft fly over 211,000 hours annually to provide nearly 5,900 FAA pilot certificates each year. As America’s largest flight school, ATP is the leading supplier of professionally trained pilots to the nation’s regional airlines.


Martha King Honored by the  San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce’s Women In Leadership

The San Diego East County Chamber  of Commerce recently honored our Co Founder Martha King along with seven additional women at the 2017 Women in Leadership Luncheon.  

The complete story as it appeared in East County Magazine is below:

The San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce recently honored eight women with 2017 Women in Leadership Luncheon (WILL) awards. Now in its 15th year, the annual WILL event honors women for their outstanding leadership, exemplary character and integrity in the community, as well as their efforts to empower women to succeed and prosper in life and business, Chamber officials said. The awards event was held at the Town and Country Resort Hotel in Mission Valley.

Photo: (from left to right): Marla Black, Junior Achievement of San Diego County; Wendy McKinney, American Red Cross of San Diego and Imperial Counties; Martha King, King Schools; Van Tran, Sharp Grossmont Hospital; Michelle Bergquist, Connected Women of Influence; Kristine Costa, Waste Management, Inc.; Barbara Ryan, Rady Children’s Hospital San Diego; Bonnie Rush, Breast Imaging Specialists.

Honorees included: Michelle Bergquist, co-founder and CEO, Connected Women of Influence; Marla Black, president/CEO, Junior Achievement of San Diego County; Kristine Costa, public sector account executive, Waste Management, Inc.; Martha King, co-founder, King Schools; Wendy McKinney, chief development officer, American Red Cross of San Diego and Imperial Counties; Bonnie Rush, president, Breast Imaging Specialists; Barbara Ryan, vice president of government affairs, Rady Children’s Hospital – San Diego; Van Tran, nursing supervisor, Sharp Grossmont Hospital.

Bergquist co-founded Connected Women of Influence in June 2008. Connected Women of Influence is a private, for-profit, invitation-only membership professional association for women who lead people, projects, teams and companies in business-to-busienss sectors. She also is a co-founder of SUE Talks (SUE is an acronym for Successful, Unstoppable, Empowering). She also is a founding partner of Women Lead Publishing, a book publisher, and Women Lead Magazine.

Black joined Junior Achievement (JA) of San Diego County in September 2015 after a 35-year career in banking, financial services and sales management. To ensure students are ready for the “real-world,” JA provides financial literacy programs to 81,000 students annually by teaching them how to get a job, start a business and manage their money. The nonprofit is home to the popular McGrath Family JA Biz Town, a mini-city where fifth-grade students discover how to start and run a profitable business. With the support of 6,300 volunteers, a staff of 40 and an annual budget of $4 million, JA delivers relevant, hands-on experiences that give students from kindergarten through high school the knowledge and skills to succeed in today’s competitive global economy.

Costa has worked in the solid waste and recycling industry since 1999 and oversees municipal relations for Waste Management in East County. She is a board member with the San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce, Santee Chamber of Commerce and Boys & Girls Clubs of East County. Since 2009, she has been actively involved with Mothers Against Drunk Driving following the loss of her husband Eddy Costa to a drunk driver in 2008.

King co-founded King Schools, offering aviation instructional video and online courses, with her husband John King in 1975. With a folksy, humor-rich approach in their training videos, Martha is considered one of the most recognized experts in flight instruction. King Schools is credited with making aviation knowledge more accessible to pilots worldwide. It’s believed that nearly every pilot has taken a KING course at some time during their certification training and about half of each year’s crop of new private and instrument pilots in the U.S. have learned using King Schools’ educational materials.

McKinney joined the local American Red Cross chapter in May 2015. She works with external partners, corporations, individual donors, volunteers and others to raise funds that advance the organization’s mission, including disaster preparedness support, emergency relief efforts and services to members of the Armed Forces and their families. She has more than 25 years of marketing, sales and fundraising experience in both the financial services and nonprofit industries.

Rush founded Breast Imaging Specialists in 1998 after several years of working directly with patients using mammography for early detection. She consults in the implementation of the Mammography Quality Standards Act (MQSA) to advance quality in mammography. She is the author of “MQSA Made Easy,” a manual for mammography professionals. Rush has served on the local, state and national level with numerous organizations to aid in development of standards and to advance early detection for all women. Rush also was honored by the Chamber for her contributions in healthcare with the Michele Tarbet Healthcare Award, named in honor of the former CEO of Sharp Grossmont Hospital who passed away in July 2014.

Ryan, with six grown children and 17 grandchildren, has worked at Rady Children’s Hospital – San Diego (RCH) since 1990. She is responsible for the management and coordination of the hospital’s activities and relationships with political, government and legislative bodies. She has been a public official since 1979, when she was first elected to the Santee School District board of education. She is currently serving her 10th term. She also has served on the executive committee of the San Diego School Boards Association, a nonprofit that offers training to school districts.

Tran has been a registered nurse for 13 years with extensive training in emergency and trauma nursing. She has volunteered on medical missions with the International Red Cross, United Nations, U.S. Navy and various nonprofits for the past 10 years. She has traveled to Haiti and Nepal after earthquakes in both nations. These experiences has led to her founding Venture to Heal Medical Missions, a nonprofit that organizes medical professionals and laypersons to medical missions in third-world countries.

This year’s WILL event sponsors included Anderson Plumbing, Heating & Air, Barona Resort & Casino, Jasmine Creek Florist, Kaiser Permanente, Postal Annex Plus, San Diego Gas & Electric, St. Madeleine Sophie’s Center, Sycuan Casino, The East County Herald and Waste Management, Inc. The parking sponsor was Wade, Howard & Associates, CPAs, LLP.

Other sponsors included Foothills Christian Church, Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District, Grossmont Healthcare District, Oak Tree Escrows, Inc., The Coldwell Banker West Foundation, Toward Maximum Independence, Inc., AT&T, California Bank & Trust – La Mesa, Mail Management Group, Inc., RCP Block & Brick, Sharp Grossmont Hospital, Toyota of El Cajon and XL Staffing Service & Excell Security, Inc.

The keynote speaker was entrepreneur Jenny Amaraneni, co-founder and CEO of SOLO Eyewear, a company that creates ecologically friendly sunglasses made from recycled materials. The company said 10 percent of its profits are used to fund eye exams, eyeglasses and cataract surgery for people in need around the world. To date, more than 13,000 people have had their vision restored through her efforts. Event emcee was Lee Ann Kim, founder of the Pacific Arts Movement.