People: Thunder Aviation Promotions

Thunder Aviation announces that Kevin Manahan has been promoted to director of maintenance. Manahan assumed his new role on Sept. 5, 2005. He previously served as Thunder’s Chief Inspector.

Kevin Manahan spent a 20-year career in the United States Army that began as an aircraft mechanic and ended as a Quality Control and Aircraft Logistics Manager. He holds his A&P license and IA authorization and earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Professional Aeronautics from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. He is a Safety Counsel member of the St. Louis Flight Standards District Office. Since joining Thunder after his successful military career, Manahan has completed maintenance training in Falcon 20 and Citation 650 aircraft.

Richard K. Nickerson has been hired as vice president, sales and marketing. Nickerson will start in his new position on Nov. 1, 2005.

Rick Nickerson is a native New Englander and has previously been employed by Cessna Aircraft, Sabreliner Corporation, McDonnell Douglas and Bell Helicopter where he was the top North American Salesman in 2001 and 2002. In 2002, Nickerson also received Bell’s prestigious Salesman of the Year Award as the lead salesman worldwide. Nickerson served as Thunder’s Eastern Regional Sales Manager in 2004 before returning to Bell/Agusta Aerospace Company earlier this year. Nickerson received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Marlboro College in Vermont. He is a commercial pilot and was honorably discharged as a Chief Warrant Officer Four with over 20 years of service that included tours in both Vietnam and Iraq.

Ross Pritchard has been promoted to regional sales manager for the North territory, and fellow Central Missouri State University graduate Matthew Leiboult has been hired as Cost Center Manager. Both assumed their duties over the summer.

Originally from Ozark, Missouri, Leiboult earned his degree in Aviation Technology with an emphasis in Maintenance Management. He holds both a private pilot and A&P certificates. He and his wife Kyla are expecting their first child in January.

Pritchard is a native of St. Charles County. Like Leiboult, he is a private pilot with an A&P certificate and holds his degree in Aviation Technology. While a student at CMSU, Pritchard was the president of CMSU’s chapter of PAMA (Professional Aviation Maintenance Association).

Based at Spirit of St. Louis Airport in Chesterfield, Mo., Thunder Aviation is a full-service fixed base operator (FBO) offering extensive maintenance and avionics programs ranging from major inspections and heavy maintenance to prepurchase evaluations and powerplant HSI and inspections. With more than 100,000 square feet of hangar space, Thunder Aviation services aircraft of all sizes, ranging from single engine piston to large multi-engine turbine powered aircraft.