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Monday, October 1, 2007

Meet the Contributors

LEE BENSON recently retired as senior pilot of the Los Angeles County Fire Dept. In addition to spending his retirement writing for Rotor & Wing, he plans to continue that advocacy by consulting with U.S. and international helicopter operators on their activities and fleet and equipment requirements.

JAMES CARELESS recently wrote on HeliExpo 2007, the 2007 Paris Air Show, and the latest developments in police-focused helicopter products for Rotor & Wing. Look for his work in the show dailies at Helitech 2007 in England this month.

GIOVANNI DE BRIGANTI has the long view of the rotorcraft business in Europe and the world, having written for R&W for more than 21 years. He is currently working on stories on the curriculum, philosophy, and equipment of the Franco-German academy training Eurocopter Tiger pilots and EC145 operations of the French Gendarmerie.

ELIZAVETA KAZACHKOVA is on staff with the Air Transport Observer, a Moscow-based airline business publication. She also edits an online resource for general aviation pilots called Polet. She has worked for Kamov Helicopters, from where her interest in rotorcraft originates.

RAY PROUTY wrote R&W’s Aerodynamic column from 1980 to 2000. During the first 12 years, three compilations were published, Helicopter Aerodynamics, More Helicopter Aerodynamics, and Even More Helicopter Aerodynamics. These have been out-of-print for many years, but have recently been reincarnated in a single volume as Helicopter Aerodynamics Vol I, which is available from helicopterseminars.com. They are also working on Volume II.

FAYE ROSS is a freelance photographer based in Chevy Chase, Md. Her photo of a V-22 Osprey tilt-rotor from Marine Medium Tilt-rotor Sqdn. 263 practicing desert landings near Yuma, Ariz. last June is her first work for Rotor & Wing.

ERNIE STEPHENS took his first helicopter ride at age 5. Thirty-six years later, he was the chief pilot for the Prince George’s County (Md.) Police Dept. in suburban Maryland. He was still flying police missions when he began writing for R&W in 2003, covering a wide variety of topics, including our law enforcement column. He also writes for our sister publication, Aviation Maintenance, and serves as an aviation consultant to a variety of private and government entities. He enjoys toy collecting, cycling and meeting our readers. Ernie holds a B.S. in Management of Technical Operations and an M.S. in Aeronautical Science, both from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.

BRIAN SWINNEY is a 3,800-hr-plus emergency medical services pilot. In addition to flying for Ballard Aviation’s EagleMed, he is a safety coordinator at that operation’s Tahlequah, Okla. base. He writes in the hope of helping other pilots to avoid accidents like the one he suffered — and their hidden costs — and EMS operators to improve their approaches to safety.

RICHARD WHITTLE is a regular contributor to R&W. He also writes about military affairs for The Dallas Morning News and is at work on a book for Simon & Schuster about the V-22 Osprey.

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