Greetings and Salutations. By now you’ve gotten a chance to read the press release and my ‘Bio’ on the SAFE website or in one of the major Aviation publications, to those of you who know me, ‘HI’ and to those who don’t, “I’m Happy to make your acquaintance”.
First let me say how privileged, honored and excited I am to be chosen to serve this distinguished group of Aviation Educators. I was selected to serve as a Mentor with SAFE in 2011. I have followed the organization since that time. On the subject of MENTORS, I have plans to revive the program with a much larger scope. Look for more information in the coming months. I am planning a formal presentation during SUN-n-FUN but will keep you informed as plans progress. One of the particular things that I am BIG on is communications. Which, I will add, is a two-way airway.
That being said let me add this. I believe that SAFE exists to provide and serve the membership. The Board and I have been entrusted to “captain” the organization for a SAFE and successful journey. We are a member driven organization. If you, the membership, are not satisfied with SAFE’s operation, you will look elsewhere. You are our customer and we work for you, as their instructor, your clients and students are your customer, as well as your employer.
My vision for SAFE is an expansion of not only its membership but its scope. I believe that SAFE needs to be an active organization. Not a passive one. I believe that we must include any and all, both current educators and those who have an interest in furthering AVIATION education of students and clients. We must include any and all EDUCATORS, no matter the age, or AVIATION subject matter, it’s in our mission statement to do so.
I believe SAFE needs to reach out to members of the Maintenance, Avionics and Unmanned Aircraft sectors, as well as to technical instructors in those areas. Additionally, SAFE needs to reach out to K-12 classroom teachers in the private and public school systems who are interested in including aviation-themed lessons in their classrooms. We also need to include the Warbird, Classic, Light Sport and Ultralight communities. Presentations and forums could and should be a continuing and expanding part of SAFE’s visits to SUN-n-FUN and OSHKOSH as well as the creation and expansion of local presentations.
You, or Y’all as they say here in Texas, may be wondering how and when? Good Question! Here we go, stay with me now. A vision, as my dear grandmother once said to me, “With the mouth its easy.” To do these things takes time, money and commitment. You already provide your share of money in the form of annual dues. We will be looking elsewhere in the form of expanding membership and supporters for that. Earlier I mentioned that this is a ‘member driven’ organization. We all need to be pulling in the same direction of the compass. We need your support by volunteering and getting involved, both at the local and national level. Become an ambassador for SAFE, formally or informally, by talking to others about SAFE and our mission. This is your organization, be proud of it and of belonging to it. Get out and get involved locally. Some of my ideas that I shared with the SAFE Board of Directors during the interview process were posted in the September Newsletter. (You can pull it up on the web and review it.)
I mentioned the website. I, along with the SAFE Board, as well as the Marketing Committee, believe that the SAFE website is in need of an overhaul and upgrade. The site needs to be our ‘Flagship.’ After all, the website is where prospective members and supporters first see who we are as an organization. It sets the tone of SAFE as a viable home for them. Besides our membership, and our visibility at SUN-n-FUN and OSHKOSH, it is our identity. The website must be up-to-date with communications and easy to navigate. It must also be a reliable source to our membership. It is at the top of my list of priorities.
We need to be VISIBLE. We need to have non-members hearing of SAFE and seeing the SAFE logo and asking “What is SAFE?” All of us are the personal contacts, ambassadors if you will, needed to not only grow our organization by getting the word out, but by making SAFE a recognized logo. I have put on my blue logo shirt on more than one occasion to represent SAFE. Even if it was just a presence, people ask about the logo. That’s my cue to introduce myself and tell them what SAFE is and what we are all about.
My vision for SAFE includes being recognized as a ‘the’ source for Aviation Education, dedicated to Safety, Standards, Professionalism and Knowledge. I want our SAFE members to be recognized as the ‘Go To Person’ in their community for all things related to aviation education. We have such a great level of experience within our organization that if you have question, no matter the subject, we have a person to go to for the answer or at least one who can help to find the answer. How many times have we heard that the only stupid question is the one not asked?
In closing, I give you my promise to do all I can to advance this organization. I will never ask of you what I will not or have not done myself. However, I need your help and support to move SAFE forward. It will not happen overnight. It will be a long flight but I feel that the rewards are there. I look forward to our journey together.
Blue Skies and Tailwinds
-W.J. Bill Moyle, SAFE executive director