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"We are the protagonists of our stories called life, and there is no limit to how high we can fly."

PHD. MBA. MHS. Type rated on A350, A330, B777, B747-400, B747-200, B757, B767, B737, B727. International Airline Pilot / Author / Speaker. Dedicated to giving the gift of wings to anyone following their dreams. Supporting Aviation Safety through training, writing, and inspiration. Fighting for Aviation Safety and Airline Employee Advocacy. Safety Culture and SMS change agent.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

CEO of Cirrus Aircraft

Invites you for a great event!

Special Invitation by CEO of Cirrus Aircraft

Speaker: Dale Klapmeier, CEO Cirrus Aircraft

Date: May 21, 2014 at 6pm
Location: Museum of Flight 
Theater Room 
9404 East Marginal Way S 


Date: May 22, 2014 at 5pm 
Location: Microsoft Campus 
Studio B/1350 – The Screening Room 
15101 NE 40th St. 


Cirrus Aircraft came from humble beginnings in a Baraboo, WI barn in 1984 where Alan and Dale Klapmeier designed and built the first Cirrus. Nineteen years later, the Cirrus SR22 became the best-selling single-engine piston aircraft in the world by pioneering the latest technological advances in manufacturing and safety. Today, Cirrus Aircraft owns the largest market share in the industry, producing aircraft more advanced that most commercial airliners, and the only aircraft certified with a whole airframe parachute as a standard feature, which to date has saved 86 lives.

Success, however, has not come without challenge, frustration, and concern over longevity. As virtually every other industry, aviation has faced formidable challenges over the past 30 years. Government regulation, certification standards, labor shortages, and cash flow challenges have brought many aircraft manufacturers to the brink of bankruptcy. Dale Klapmeier will discuss how the Cirrus team has successfully navigated the company through these turbulent times to become one of the most successful aircraft manufacturers in the world, and how these strategies can relate to other small businesses facing similar challenges.

I am really looking forward to this talk not only from a pilot perspective but from a business angle as well. We can all learn so much from the successes and failures of others. And to meet the CEO of Cirrus and have a chance to talk to him? All I can say is wow! I hope you all can make it.


Anyone interested in overcoming business challenges is welcome to attend but space is limited. Please RSVP to with the date and number of people attending.
Best regards, Gordon Alvord

I'm planning on attending the 
Seattle Museum of Flight venue
On the 21st...
(If scheduling doesn't grab me first) 
Let me know if you'll be there too.

If you can't make... 
What would you like me to ask?

Enjoy the Journey! 
Hope to see you on May 21st!
XO Karlene


  1. They are great airplanes, and someday I might own one, if I find a pile of cash somewhere.

    1. Me too! And I already bought my lottery ticket.

    2. Awesome... I bought my ticket too! We could start an airline if we win it!

    3. Alex, I would buy an airline with you for sure!!

  2. You make that airplane look good. Great pics.

    Here is your question. What can we already do to help encourage younger folks to become pilots? I honestly hesitate to encourage anyone because of the expense that must be paid out on the front end with no promise of a job. And if they get that job it pays less than the guy that makes coffee at Starbucks. What can the industry do to curb the expense on the front end?

    1. Rob, Thank you! Okay.. looks like two questions. I'll answer the second first... What can the industry do to curb the expense on the front end? Answer: Distribute autographed Parker pens. ;)

      Seriously getting that hour requirement changed. I'm also going to try to get some of those hours changed so we can use glider hours. That has to be less expensive and more productive than autopilot flying.

      And how do we encourage younger folks to become pilots? I encourage young people to follow their passion. If that's in the sky...then great. But they have to do what they love.

      There is no guarantee in life... and we don't know in any field if we'll get hired for sure. I'm on my 8th airline... and have been with my current airline, with a bump back in seniority with the merger... But I have been with this airline for 17 years, and I'm making a great living. No complaints.

      When I started with America West I had to take a pay cut from my high school job. I also had to pay 25K to buy stock in the company. (Now is American stock ... I have one share: $46!) I've worked double jobs for many years in the early years at NWA to put the kids through college.

      But the reality is, I've loved what I'm doing so it wasn't a drudge. And the reason I had fun doing that extra work is, because it was a passion. So the key is to have a passion.

      Okay... you inspired a post. :)
      Thanks for the comment!

  3. I have two questions... Very simple... But I haven't seen a direct answer for them yet:

    - What Mr. Klapmeier forecasts for China's general aviation sector? What could limit this sector's expansion (communist government wise) and how Cirrus Company is preparing to achieve market presence against its strong competition?

    And at last... It would be lovely if you can:

    - Does Singapore offer a better business environment than China and why? Despite both governments being extremely wise on keeping conservative behaviors economically, is Singapore a prosperous zone for the general aviation sector?

    I have always been so curious about these two. lol


    1. Alex, These are great questions! And I will ask for sure! Thank you. Brilliant.

  4. Karlene, that Cirrus looks amazing with you in it ;)

    I flew the Cirrus for my PPL and IR. Loved it. But if I were to do it over again, I would probably have started out in a C152/72 and then moved to the Cirrus for IR.. But I don't regret doing my training in the SR20!

    1. Thanks for your comment Cecilie. I agree... a 152 is the best plane to begin in. The Cirrus is an awesome plane, but not sure if it was designed as a trainer. I'm going to ask that question. Because, for stick and rudder skills... and the basics, there is nothing like the smallest plane you can find.

  5. Full marks to Cirrus Aircraft for their outstanding success.
    To out-sell both Piper & Cessna within two decades is amazing.

    1. Yes it is. I wondering if the flight schools opting for them instead of... had anything to do with this. Looking forward to talking to him!


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