“As the longest-standing FBO at the Denton Enterprise Airport, this promotion is meant as a thank you to pilots for our ongoing success,” says CEO, Damon Ward. Additionally, “the promotion supports a larger marketing theme: How Business Air is proud to be a part of everything Texas. From our cosmopolitan city skylines and unshakable friendliness to our love of great football, BBQs and country music” adds Damon.
Business Air has proven they know how to share some true Texas hospitality—whether fly-in is for a week or a quick turn. Now even more of the Texas love will be felt!
Instead of taking the estimated 18 months to two years, Business Air received FAA authorization to manage, operate and maintain larger cabin aircraft for up to 30 passengers in just seven months. Receiving this distinction on our Part 135 Certificate and becoming among a select group of charter operators was the accomplishment of VP of Operations and Director of Maintenance, Pat Hall.
Business Air got the chance to ask Pat, a 30-year aviation veteran, what made the difference?
Business Air: Understand this accomplishment is one many operators strive for but few accomplish. What allowed Business Air to accomplish this—and accomplish this in a shorter turnaround?
Pat: It is important to note upfront that the effort is not about getting another certificate, it is about drafting a more comprehensive maintenance plan to prove to the FAA that Business Air can operate and maintain larger cabin aircraft. Upon their review and approval of the plan, a letter is sent.
I believe, the three things that helped us achieve this milestone and get through the process more quickly was our ability to:
First – Interpret the regulations correctly.
We first met with our local FAA representative, who gave us reading material and outlined the regulations we must meet. Fortunately, we were able to interpret the regulations correctly based on our years’ of experience.
Second – Determine Business Air’s current plan was close to required plan.
We were able to also determine early on that Business Air’s current maintenance plan was not far from what was being asked for under the new regulations. For example, we already had tool calibration and a training program for mechanics. By chance, and by assumptions made earlier when drafting our original plan, we were already doing a lot of what was required. No pilot retraining was necessary and many of our current procedures could stay the same, which was an advantage.
Third – Submit a well-written plan. Our goal was to submit plan within six months and receive approval in 30 days—which we accomplished. After submitting the more comprehensive maintenance plan to the FAA and receiving their approval by letter, I received a phone call. The FAA wanted to inform us that the document we had submitted was well-written making it easy to read and understand. I had to laugh about this comment because I am a published writer and this proved to be an asset.
Denton is without doubt original and embodies an independent spirit just like the city’s brand conveys. Home to more than 122,742 residents, two universities, and a growing business sector, it is establishing a name for itself as a hotspot for high-tech innovation and research, renewable energy best practices and smart, progressive growth.
Well-known throughout Texas for its lively, energetic culture and awarding winning Main Street, Denton is now becoming known to the nation. And, Business Air is proud to be a contributor to this fact. Denton made Business Insiders list of US Cities with the best quality of life for 2016-2017 and made Livability.com’s national list of top 100 places to live in 2014 and 2015.
As Business Air introduces more travelers to our aircraft charter, aircraft management and FBO services, we are helping to get the word out on Denton—and the convenience of flying in and out of the Denton Enterprise Airport.
Denton’s strategic location and easy flight access continues to spur travelers to avoid the hassles of larger airports toward our city. Currently, the airport ranks as the 7th busiest of all airports in the state of Texas and the 4th busiest airport within the Federal Contract Tower Program.
September 27, 2016 – Business Air™ announces the early stage implementation of a top-down, operation-wide Safety Management System (SMS). The process is useful for any operation because it looks at safety from a variety of points of view and integrates risk assessment and safety assurance fundamentals at key stages.
“It doesn’t just focus on the maintenance or flight departments, says VP of Operations and Director of Maintenance, Pat Hall. It takes a broad view of our entire operation including our FBO and all the aircraft on our certificate and the safety in which they operate. Additionally, it focuses on the obvious areas such as whether a flight can take off in certain weather, plus less obvious areas like checking the ramp to make sure trash cans are not blowing down the runway.”
CEO, Damon Ward adds, “As Business Air grows, it was important for us to ensure that our safety assurance grew as well. SMS gives us the framework to do this: assess risk at every stage and have in-place the right management decision-making processes for the highest degree of safety assurance.”
After the implementation phase, company plans to review and continually evolve system on a quarterly basis indefinitely.
September 27, 2016 – Business Air™ is pleased to announce that it became among a select group of charter operators authorized to accommodate up to 30 passengers and longer-range jet travel for business and leisure travelers. “Receiving the FAA’s approval to manage, operate and maintain larger cabin aircraft on our Part 135 Certificate will have Business Air operating closer to an airline with a greater number of checks and balances,” says CEO, Damon Ward.
In the near-term, customers will appreciate the fact that more than nine passengers can travel on the same flight, and they can fly longer distances such as to Hawaii and across the country more easily. It also opens up more opportunities for Business Air at the optimal time. The Denton Enterprise Airport is now ranked the 7th busiest of all airports in the state of Texas and the 4th busiest airport within the Federal Contract Tower Program. More potential customers are being introduced to Business Air as marketing efforts are stepped up. And the early stage implementation of a company-wide Safety Management System (SMS) is bringing yet another point of distinction.
“Instead of taking the estimated 18 months to two years, Business Air received FAA approval for ten or more seats in seven months” said VP of Operations and Director of Maintenance, Pat Hall. Pat, a 30-year aviation veteran, led the process and attributes three things to accomplishing this milestone within a shorter timeframe. Interpreting the regulations correctly right out of the gate; determining early on that Business Air’s current maintenance plan was not far from what was being ask for; and submitting a well-written plan.
September 7, 2016 – Leading Seattle publication, 425 Business shares the rise in private air travel in their latest edition. The feature “Private Fly” spotlights businesses who choose to fly privately, local flying clubs, plane charter companies as well as tips on whether to buy or not buy.
Here’s an excerpt where Business Air is mentioned:
For the person who doesn’t have a pilot’s license but wants to fly privately for business or pleasure, there is a plethora of plane charter options in the area. “With the current situation with commercial travel, we are seeing unprecedented demand for charter,” said Gene Buccola, president of Business Air, located at Boeing Field. Business Air manages and charters 10 aircraft, from turbo props to light- and midsize jets. Charter services range from business travel to golf and fishing excursions. Prices are based on the size of plane, the distance traveled, and the number of passengers.
Business Air also provides 56,000 square feet of hangar space companies who want to store a plane. Maintenance services are available for $2,500 to $10,000 per month, depending on the plane’s size. Read full article here.
Business Air™ at Denton Enterprise Airport (KDTO) in Denton, TX is now an official member of the elite Paragon Network.
Business Air has been operating for 15 years and is the most established FBO at Denton Enterprise Airport (KDTO). Their exceptional customer service staff and NATA Safety 1st Certified line personnel will ensure that both you and aircraft are met. offer the most competitive fuel prices, no ramp fees and a full-range of passenger services. Recently recognized by the City of Denton for advancing the stature of the city, Business Air has proved to be the easiest in-and-out location in North Texas.
“We couldn’t be more pleased to become a part of the Paragon Network,” said Business Air CEO Damon Ward. “As the Denton Airport’s longest-standing FBO, we have embraced—and cared about—the same core standards since 2001. Namely, to provide a great flying experience for business and leisure travelers. With the increased visibility that Paragon will provide, we can do what we do best on an expanded scale.”
The Paragon Network is a distinguished membership of independent FBO’s that provide an elite experience to general aviation travelers in North America. Paragon Aviation Group performs a comprehensive audit of the facility and services offered to ensure the quality of the member base before any FBO joins The Paragon Network. Each member FBO must comply with a set of strategically developed core standards in order to remain in the group. Paragon Aviation Group facilitates The Paragon Network.
Paragon Aviation Group is owned and operated by Delk’s Valley Oil, a family business comprised of Mike Delk, Megan Barnes and Molly LeBlanc. With their combined industry experience of over 75 years they have introduced an exciting new industry platform for premier aviation service providers.
July 22, 2016 – Business Air™ announces today Kenneth S. Edmondson joins the company as Chief Pilot. In this demanding role, Ken will oversee all aspects of Business Air’s flight operations, both in the air and on the ground. CEO, Damon Ward said “Ken’s background in both commercial and military aviation is a benefit for the company as well as his knowledge in fleet and pilot management.” He enjoys having almost 5000 hours of total flight time to his name and prides himself on his comprehensive experience with geography, topography, navigation and weather conditions. His full bio follows.
Ken brings more than 26 years of experience in both Corporate and Military aviation. Most recently, he was a Part 135 Captain/Pilot-in-Command of Hawker jets and King Air turboprops in the Dallas area. Prior to that he worked for the United States Army in various locations—serving in many crucial roles such as managing fleet maintenance and intelligence mission equipment modifications for DHC-7 and King Air Airborne Intelligence aircraft. He also served as the Chief Pilot responsible for oversight and management of C-12 King Air flight operations for the Defense Intelligence Agency at the US Embassy in Turkey. Ken is school trained in the maintenance and accountability of specialized ALSE (Aviation Life Support Equipment); and has instructed pilots and instructor pilots in UH-60 Blackhawk helicopters, flying in combat and high stress situations including Northern Tactical Zone of South Korea and the Demilitarized Zone.
He holds a Bachelor of Science Degree from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and a Master’s in Business Administration from the University of Phoenix. He enjoys having almost 5000 hours of total flight time with almost 4000 PIC (Pilot-in-Command) hours to his name.
Denton, Texas, September 16, 2015 – Business Air was recently recognized by the City of Denton and the Denton Enterprise Airport for advancing the stature and prosperity of the city and its airport. Even U.S. Congressman Michael Burgess and State Senator Craig Estes each offered their own recognition for the tremendous efforts the company is putting forth in welcoming international and domestic corporate executives to North Texas and aggressively pursuing plans for corporate aviation expansion. After receiving the honorable recognitions, Damon Ward, CEO of Business Air said “how very proud he was to accept the awards on behalf of the company. And appreciated seeing public and private partnerships, like this, gain greater traction for Denton and all of North Texas.”
(from left to right) Dave Schaumburg, Denton Enterprise Airport Operations Manager, Damon Ward, CEO of Business Air, Pat Hall, VP of Operations for Business Air, Chris Watts, Mayor of Denton, Erik With, District Director for U.S. Congressman Michael Burgess and Dianne Helms, Legislative Aid for State Senator Craig Estes
The multiple awards were presented on September 11, 2015, at the Mayor-City Council Annual Business Awards Event. Dave Schaumburg, Denton’s airport operations manager filling in for Airport Director Quentin Hix, led the ceremony by saying “this award recognizes Business Air’s new activity and the continuation of outstanding flight line services for private pilots and corporate aviation. Not only have you reinvigorated an already successful aviation service business, but have committed millions of dollars through new majority owners, High Plateau Ventures, to attract significant corporate aircraft to Denton and change the airport’s skyline for the better.”
The company’s expansion plans include a new 24,000 sq. ft. hangar, leased property to build a second hangar and renovations to flight line service areas. Michelle Cunningham, Business Development Officer for the city of Denton’ Economic Development applauded the recognitions, “Business Air provides a first-class, first impression of Denton to international and domestic corporate executives traveling to Denton for meetings at the headquarters of Peterbilt Motors, Sally Beauty Company, Tetra Pak and others as well as to site selectors determining the best facility location for their clients. We are excited by their expansion plans and pleased to recognize their accomplishments.”
Denton, Texas, October 28, 2015 – Native Denton resident, Gina Atkinson has decided to join the growing Business Air operation as Director of Business Development.
The community knows her best as Courtyard by Marriott’s Director of Sales where she played a key role in bringing the Marriott family of hotels to the area more than seven years ago.
With more than 25 years of sales and client relations management experience, Gina is expected to play a critical role in helping the company increase their growth and brand presence in North Texas as well as other geographical markets.
Business Air’s CEO, Damon Ward, says he and the company are very pleased to welcome Gina on board and “utilize her connections and guidance as they expand to the next level.” Adding that “not only is her business savviness an asset, but her remarkable ability to deliver exemplary service and establish long-standing relationships with clients a plus for Business Air.”
When asked why she is making the move, Gina says “the formula for success in any industry is having a superior product coupled with exceptional service and execution. Business Air has already proven this, so I am thrilled to add my expertise to an already stellar team.”
Gina has also served as Board of Director for the Greater Denton Sports Commission and has served as Co-Chair of Leadership Denton, Chair of Lead Program and Leader of Ambassadors of Denton Chamber of Commerce.
January 19-22, 2016 – Our team attended the NBAA’s Schedulers & Dispatchers Conference in (almost sunny) Tampa Bay, Florida. Thanks to all who participated in our fun, biplane photo booth. Getting the chance to meet so many attendees—and share a special memory—was one of the highlights of our trip. Other highlights were: exhibiting on the AvFuel aisle (Damon Ward, CEO, is being interviewed by AvFuel representative) and having good times with other conference attendees (spontaneous juggling in our booth).
A Sampling of Biplane Photos Follow
February 3, 2016 – Business Air™ announces today that its King Air 350i received official 135 certification with the FAA. The best-in-class aircraft is immediately available for private air charter from Seattle’s Boeing Field (BFI) and Central Oregon airports: Redmond (RDM), Bend (BDN) and Sunriver (S21).
Gene Buccola, President of Business Air said “The aircraft is designed for short-runway accessibility and a maximum range of 1412 nautical miles. Business professionals will find this aircraft well-suited to their needs. Especially, if professionals have to attend meetings in multiple cities in a day, or want to utilize their time on the plane for meetings with colleagues or independent work time.”
Other travelers will enjoy quicker, more convenient travel for golf trips, hunting and fishing trips, as well as for other special occasions.
Charter quotes available at email@example.com or 206-762-1357.
“Two highly trained pilots are on every flight,” mentioned CEO, Damon Ward, “which is one of Business Air’s differentiations.” Pilot, Chris Duros has served as a pilot since 1973 and appreciates the King Air 350i’s reliability and all-weather operating capability at both rural and major airports. Pilot, Mat Reiser has been a pilot since 2008 and values the King Air 350i’s state-of-the art cabin and avionics, which makes it a pleasurable ride for both himself and passengers.
The aircraft offers luxurious comfort for up to nine passengers and numerous onboard amenities including:
• All-leather DBL club seats
• Heated cabin chairs
• Wi-Fi and a flight phone with wireless handset
• Refreshment bar
• Electrochromic sun visors
• Sidewall tables and cup holders
• Private lavatory
April 15, 2016 – Business Air announces today that its Lear 31A (based at Boeing Field) received official 135 charter certification with the FAA. With a design for great runway and in-flight performance, this sleek beauty is now available for private air charter.
“Considered fastest-in-its class, the Lear 31A has a cruising speed of 450 knots and a range of 1000 nautical miles, which brings terrific charter options for up to seven passengers,” says Business Air’s CEO, Damon Ward. Gene Buccola, President of Business Air, added: “With an excellent climb rate and low fuel burn, we anticipate the Learjet becoming a favorite among travelers who are looking for an exceptional ride along with exceptional value.”
The aircraft offers a well-appointed cabin with all-leather club seats, complimentary Wi-Fi, and a refreshment bar.
Charters are available from Seattle’s Boeing Field (BFI) and Central Oregon airports: Redmond (RDM), Bend (BDN) and Sunriver (S21). For more information, go here: