"Signoffs," or endorsements as they are more correctly called, are a part of any aviation training. As students progress, they receive official endorsements from their instructor, giving them privileges to fly by themselves or make a trip to a certain destination, for example. They mark significant steps on the path to becoming a pilot or growing your skills.
Conversely, endorsements from students are just as important to me. They don't give me any special privileges but I value them just as much, and I feel they help mark my progress as an instructor. It's a team effort after all.
I first met Rich when I decided to commit to the idea that I would be a pilot. At that time the most I knew about formal instruction was to pick you CFI carefully. I asked Rich a few questions on the subject and satisfied with the answers we began what would become an eight month journey into my training. Rich was always thoughtful when it came to overload and stress. He always wanted to make sure I was comfortable pushing ahead when the days were filled with new challenges. When I became proficient enough at flying to assume the responsibility of PIC he made sure I stuck to the numbers. I will alway hear his voice when I look at my heading or my altitude and it's not where it should be. I'll alway remember the first solo. I was so excited that I don't think I had time to worry. Rich was perched on the bench along side the runway watching his little bird fly away from the nest. It must be a tremendously rewarding experience to be able to teach something so great. To be able to give the gift of flight. I was so well prepared by the time I took my check ride that the whole experience with the examiner was very enjoyable. I knew what I needed to know and it was obvious to her.
I spent many hours of personal time with Rich and feel that I have a new friend as well as mentor. Soon we'll take on new challenges and I'm looking forward to learning and challenging myself under his guidance.
Rich was more than I could have asked for from a CFI. He's super friendly, extremely easy-going and above all, a fantastic teacher. He'll make you feel at ease when you're nervous, push you when you need to be challenged and make you laugh day in and day out. If you're looking for a great experience and lots of knowledge you won't find a better instructor!
I recently completed commercial training with Rich. Rich was very responsive my goals and motivations, which greatly influenced the pace and organization of our flights. Rich ensured that the flight maneuvers and knowledge applicable to a commercial rating were things which I learned thoroughly. He accomplished this through varied methods of teaching: in the plane, with supplemental reading and handouts, classroom-type discussions between us and other pilots, etc.
Not only did Rich provide instruction, but we were able to take flights with spectacular views over the Bay, Golden Gate, the Central Valley, and Yosemite.
Over the course of my commercial instruction Rich also served as safety pilot for instrument currency on several occasions. We were able to seek actual IMC conditions greatly improving my piloting skills.
I had a great experience working with Rich.
I'm probably not a typical Private Pilot student, as I was a refugee from another larger flying club who needed some help. I needed someone who could take me right in the middle of my languishing pilot training and get me back on course to finish up quickly. I was frustrated from all the red tape and Rich saved me from giving up completely on my dream.
As a student pilot, I have had the pleasure of meeting and working with a number of different CFIs. All have certain strengths and personalities, but none have compared with Rich in their individual attention to my needs and in their thoroughness and dedication to the task at hand. I was anxious to get my training completed and Rich was able to pick up right where I had left off and quickly completed my requirements and prepared me for my FAA testing. I passed both written and practical tests on the first try and could not have accomplished this without Rich's ability to quickly identify my deficiencies and to provide his assistance concisely and accurately wherever needed.
Learning to fly is expensive, period. Don't spend time with a flight school or CFI who doesn't appreciate this fact and is willing to waste your time. Especially if you are a fast learner this can be a huge benefit for your wallet and your patience. Rich is a patient, thorough and knowledgeable instructor who will make you a safe and proficient pilot as quickly as you are able.