AMTSociety Aircraft Maintenance Professionals Sharing Resources and Benefits


Executive Director's Corner

November 2013

AMTSociety Update

Over the past six years the AMTSociety held their Maintenance Skills Competition in conjunction with Cygnus Business Media's Aviation Pros LIVE annual tradeshow. Once again a maintenance competition will take place in 2014 but will be organized and managed by the newly formed Aerospace Maintenance Association. To better serve its entire membership and to enhance future offerings, the AMTSociety and Cygnus Business Media are proud to lend our support to the Aerospace Maintenance Competition in 2014.

The AMC is being managed by the Honorable John Goglia, former NTSB member and staunch advocate for the aircraft maintenance technician, and will be held March 25th and 26th, 2014 at the Sands Convention Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. John Goglia says, "This is an exciting opportunity to add to the existing success of the competition to support the recognition for the profession of the aircraft maintenance technician. Moving forward our two groups will synergize our efforts to produce the highest quality event which brings us together to highlight their professionalism and safety used in maintaining aircraft today." For information on the AMC and to register your team visit:

The AMTSociety Roadshow Consortium began recently in Houston Texas. The Houston event went very well and the 2013/2014 series of events is off to a strong start. We had several new presenters speaking on new topics along with a new venue. This new speaker line up will continue to other locations and moving into 2014 we’ll explore the possibility of expanding these popular events. Some of the anonymous comments taken directly from the Houston attendee surveys were; Very informative; Best one yet; This type of program should be done every year; This is what IA renewal is all about; Need to know about new technology coming out; Excellent presentation and very timely and informative.

AMTSociety and Aviation Technician Education Council (ATEC) have enjoyed a long relationship over the years. I've been selected by the ATEC board of directors as an industry board member. This board appointment further strengthens the AMTSociety and ATEC relationship and enables us to support initiatives common to both organizations missions. ATEC was founded in 1961 to further the standing of FAA approved schools with education and industry, and to promote mutually beneficial relations with all industry and government agencies. The ATEC mission is to advocate for aviation maintenance schools in the areas of curriculum improvement, technical and financial support, while promoting mutually beneficial relations with related government and industry groups.

—Ronald Donner

October 2013

AMTSociety Supports the Aerospace Maintenance Association's Aerospace Maintenance Competition in 2014

To better serve its entire membership and to enhance future offerings, the AMTSociety is proud to lend its support to the Aerospace Maintenance Competition, presented by the Aerospace Maintenance Association in 2014.

Over the past six years the AMTSociety has held their Maintenance Skills Competition in conjunction with Cygnus Business Media's Aviation Pros LIVE annual tradeshow. Once again this year a maintenance competition will take place at this event but will be organized and managed by the newly formed Aerospace Maintenance Association with support of Cygnus Business Media, Snap-On Tool Corporation and the AMTSociety.

The AMC is being managed by the Honorable John Goglia, former NTSB member and staunch advocate for the aircraft maintenance technician, and will be held March 25th and 26th, 2014 at the Sands Convention Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. For information on the AMC and to register your team visit here.

—Ronald Donner

September 2013

AMTSociety Update

After taking the last few months to get settled into the role of executive director, it occurred to me a review of the current status and activity would be helpful for both current and future members.

AMTSociety was formed in 2005 to provide a community for the aircraft maintenance industry. Currently we have 2,461 members. Members are technicians, maintenance managers and directors, engineers, students, instructors, and more.

AMTSociety strives to provide its members with benefits that aid in their personal and professional growth. The Society not only provides educational offerings, but it also helps throughout all phases of development. Over the next six months, five live IA renewal events will be held at locations around the country including the AviationPros LIVE tradeshow in Las Vegas. We have enhanced the topics offered during the live events and registration is open on our web site.

Other benefits include a 12-month subscription to added onto an existing subscription, one year of free access to the NCATT database and a 20 percent discount for the second year, two free passes to the AviationPros LIVE tradeshow, Snap-on ratcheting screwdriver for all new members, and discounts on Hertz car rentals. More member benefits are available and we are working toward providing greater member benefits in the future.

AMTSociety is committed to the future growth of the maintenance profession through its scholarship programs and other student support programs. Aviation students receive a reduced membership fee. Through its recent leadership efforts with other key industry organizations, AMTSociety is recognized as a leading organization of the aviation maintenance profession.

Currently, AMTSociety has a group of volunteer directors which includes me. These individuals provide input on the direction of AMTSociety, determining relevant initiatives, and assisting with any number of activities. In prior years this number was greater. I feel the number of directors and advisors is not as important as what skills and experience are best for these leadership positions. I believe guidance to AMTSociety should come from all segments; general aviation, MRO, airlines, corporate aviation, etc. We will continue to define the best blend and role of directors and advisors in order to provide the best guidance possible to the AMTSociety, in-turn to our members.

AMTSociety receives support from its parent company Cygnus Business Media, in such areas as event management, administrative services, sales and marketing, print and digital content management, and financial stewardship. Aircraft Maintenance Technology (AMT) magazine is the Official Publication of AMTSociety and members are guaranteed a complimentary subscription.

—Ronald Donner

August 2013

AMTSociety Training and Education Update

Greetings everyone. One of the primary benefits offered to members of the AMTSociety has always been access to both online and live training acceptable by the FAA for both Inspection Authorization renewal and for the FAASTeam AMT Awards. We are happy to announce a few adjustments to the traditional training offerings are in work. New and additional online training courses will be made available in the months ahead on the AMTSociety website. Our live training events, affectionately known as the AMTSociety Roadshow Consortium will also undergo some adjustments. We are working with additional speakers to provide you with some new sessions. We have also looked hard at determining exactly how many and which locations to hold these live training events. At this time we have scheduled the following locations:

  • Houston Texas November 20, 2013
  • Atlanta Georgia January 8, 2014
  • Kansas City Missouri February 12, 2014
  • Aurora Colorado (Denver area) March 5, 2014

The AMTSociety website will soon have updated information and registration options available, and additional locations are been looked at. Our current plan is to enhance the online offerings while providing live events at select locations.

July 2013

Spreading the AMTSociety Message

Being an organization that represents aviation and in particular aircraft maintenance technicians, spreading the AMTSociety message through industry outreach is vital. I recently traveled to Washington, D.C., to introduce myself as the new AMTSociety Executive Director to leading officials with the FAA as well as several aviation associations. These meetings were highly successful and in an industry as dynamic as aviation, outreach to regulators, industry organizations, companies, and individuals are important elements to success. Many will agree a characteristic of a successful organization is its ability to work close with industry organizations and individuals alike. As members we all should look for ways to spread the AMTSociety message.

The AMTSociety has been very busy lately. We are finalizing the dates and locations for the next series of live education sessions, accepted by the FAA for Inspection Authorization renewal training, and working to enhance the online education offerings.

Information and details for the 2014 Maintenance Skills Competition will be available in the next couple months so start making plans now!

—Ronald Donner

June 2013

The Mission Continues

As many of you know I have accepted the position of AMTSociety’s next Executive Director and Business Manager.

As I mentioned in the May 22nd announcement, I am honored and excited to take a leadership role in this premier aircraft maintenance organization. I will continue the hard work of the past seven years, toward the vision of Tom Hendershot and the AMTSociety Board of Director, while looking to create new opportunities and benefits for our members and industry partners.

Our industry experiences its share of challenges affecting companies, organizations, and individuals. Successful organizations must adapt to industry trends, economic factors, and member needs. AMTSociety is now progressing through its own period of transition. As with most industry groups, we operate with a talented group of volunteers who dedicate their time and expertise to not only help guide the AMTSociety but to also work on programs and initiatives. It’s common during periods of transition for those closest to reevaluate their own personal role. Turnover is an expected outcome of volunteerism. With the unexpected loss of our past Executive Director, several of those dedicated individuals who have tirelessly volunteered their talents for many years have chosen this time to focus on other important parts of life such as family and careers. I want to personally thank Peter Zeeb, Joe Hawkins, and Ken MacTiernan for all they have done for the AMTSociety.

One thing should be clear, the AMTSociety is moving forward! Transition presents an opportunity to consider new people and new ideas; a healthy trait of a progressive organization. We are evaluating what talents and expertise are best suited for board members, advisors, and volunteers as AMTSociety continues with its important mission. The schedule for the next AMTSociety Roadshow Consortium which provides relevant training sessions for all AMTs is currently being established. The student scholarship program will continue. And finally the crown jewel which Ken and others did such a fine job with, the AMTSociety’s Maintenance Skills Competition, will be held just as in the past.

If anyone has a question, comment, or just feels like talking you can contact me directly at

Ronald (Ron) Donner
AMTSociety Executive Director and Business Manager

May 2013

AMTSociety Announces New Executive Director

“I’m very excited to take a leadership role in this premier aircraft maintenance association,” said Ronald Donner. “Tom Hendershot, the previous Executive Director, left large shoes to fill. Since my appointment on the AMTSociety board last year I’ve had the opportunity to work more closely with the board and became involved in several of the AMTSociety activities.”

Ronald Donner is an A&P with IA certification. He was trained at Blackhawk Technical College in Janesville, WI. He has worked in both General Aviation and for a major airline. He has spent his entire life devoted to aviation and he holds additional certificates as a Commercial Pilot with Single and Multi-Engine Land, Instrument Airplane and Glider ratings. Ron was the recipient of the 2012 National Air Transportation Association (NATA) Aviation Journalism award. He has been the Editor of Aircraft Maintenance Technology magazine for the past three years and will continue to provide editorial direction to the magazine.

“I will continue the hard work of the past seven years, toward Tom’s and the AMTSociety Board of Director’s vision, while looking to create new opportunities and benefits for our more than 2,500 members and industry partners.”

Read full story here.

April 2013

2013 Thomas Hendershot Lifetime Achievement Award

Michael P. Eason is the winner of the AMTSociety 2013 Thomas E Hendershot Lifetime Award. The award was presented at the AviationPros LIVE event in Las Vegas in March.

Eason is employed as Aviation Department Head for the Tennessee Technology Center at Nashville, a FAR Part 147 A&Pamp; Program. In addition to his school responsibilities he is also a Designated Mechanic Examiner (DME) and an FAA Aviation Safety Representative. He is a graduate of the A&P program at Northwest Alabama State and is a graduate from Columbus State University. Eason was selected as the 2006 Tennessee Maintenance Technician of the Year. He received his Inspection Authorization rating in 1996 and DME in 2002.

Previous employment includes vice president and pilot at Music City Charter in Smyrna, TN, and director of maintenance at Aviation Specialists in Colledgedale, TN.

Eason served in the Marines from 1958 to 1965, he was a corporate flight officer stationed in Eltoro Marine Air Station in California and Oceana Naval Air Station in Virginia Beach, VA.

March 2013

Actions Speak Louder Than Words

The AMTSociety's 6th Annual Maintenance Skills Competition (MSC) was held in the Las Vegas Convention Center this March 13 – 15th, 2013. The MSC again had representatives of our craft & profession from around the world with men and women from Australia, Canada, China and the United States competing in 5 categories. By coming to the MSC these professionals are helping to promote a positive, informative and professional image of today's skilled Aircraft Maintenance Technicians and Aircraft Maintenance Engineers to the public and to a certain extent our own industry.

The teams that come to the MSC are representatives from across the aircraft maintenance world and these teams are sponsored by their respective organizations and companies. Some companies sponsor more than one team such as FedEx who again fielded three different teams and the Aviation Institute of Maintenance Schools who fielded seven teams from amongst their campuses. The Military Category had teams scheduled to compete representing the United States Navy, United States Air Force, United States Army and United States Coast Guard. The USCG even had an event sponsored for the 2013 MSC. But with sequestration in effect the result was that the funding for all the Military teams was rescinded. The Military Category for the 2013 MSC was now empty because of a lack of funds.

Being asked to represent a company in a venue such as the Maintenance Skills Competition is an honor for any AMT or AME. Being chosen for the MSC is in effect being chosen to represent your company and organization and to show a professional image and high levels of skill and knowledge during the MSC. To be chosen and then told you could not go was, I'm sure, a hard dose of bad news for the men and women in the Military Category. But without funding what could these Military Aircraft Maintainers do?

In the case of the United States Coast Guard one of the two teams decided to take matters into their own hands. The team from Station Clearwater FL believed that the USCG needed to be represented. They asked their Commanders if they could represent the USCG if they went on their own. The answer was yes and the planning went into action. The team members who had been chosen to represent Station Clearwater FL used their own personal time and money for air fare, hotels, food and entry fee for the MSC. These Coast Guardsmen felt so strongly that the USCG needed to be represented they took it upon themselves to stand tall for their Branch of the US Military.

By competing in the 2013 MSC as the only team in the Military Category would certainly focus attention on their actions. No one questioned that they would come in 1st Place by default but rather what was answered was the USCG team member's passion and pride in being Aircraft Maintainers. The actions of the team from Station Clearwater FL does not diminish the passion and pride of other Maintainers in the other Branches of the US Military in the slightest. Rather what it accomplishes is it raises the level of pride and passion. The following USCG Servicemen need to be recognized for their actions.

  • AMT 1 Jim Fielder

  • AMT 1 James Bastick

  • AMT 2 Dani Church

  • AET 2 Michael Bosch

  • AET 2 Andrew Poulin

But this story doesn't stop here as an example of actions speaking louder than words. The MSC is a world class venue for showcasing skills needed to provide safe, airworthy aircraft worldwide. But the competition is also a stage where camaraderie and honor are on display. And FedEx stepped up to the plate this year to drive this point home. Prior to the announcement of the final scores the members of all three FedEx Teams passed the hat around to raise several hundred dollars which was presented to the USCG Team to help with their expenses related to competing.

In taking 1st Place in the Commercial Aviation Category FedEx Team LAX was presented with 1st Place plaques as well as multiple tools provided by Snap-On Tools, Shure-Step Step Stool, World Clocks from Crane Aerospace. The score FedEx Team LAX finished with also earned them the coveted William F. “Bill” O'Brien Award for Excellence in Aircraft Maintenance. This is a trophy named after the FAA ASI that created the Charles E. Taylor Master Mechanic Award. Along with the trophy are even more prizes sponsored by Snap-On Tools, Silvertronic , Top Flight Watches, ProBuilt Lighting and PPG Aerospace.

The PPG Aerospace prize was having the entry fee for the 2014 MSC paid for the recipient's of this award. After receiving the PPG award the FedEx LAX Team called the members of the USCG Team up on stage and offered the award to them so they could help fund competing for the 2014 competition. This was both a classy and honorable action on the part of the FedEx Teams.

All of the Technicians, Engineers and Students competing in the 2013 MSC let their actions of competing speak for their belief in promoting our craft. The actions of FedEx spoke for the brotherhood these professionals call their own.

By Ken MacTiernan
Director AMTSociety
Chairman MSC

February 2013


Kenosha, Wis., February 7, 2013 – More than 30 aviation maintenance teams from around the world will be vying for the inaugural William O'Brien Trophy for Aviation Tech Excellence, presented by Snap-on, at the AviationPros Live Conference, March 13-14, in Las Vegas.

Sponsoring the William O'Brien Trophy for Aviation Tech Excellence is part of Snap-on's expanded three-year commitment to AviationPros Live. That commitment also positions Snap-on as the new Exclusive Sponsor of the AMTSociety Maintenance Skills Competition. The event gives teams of licensed AMTs, AMEs, international military personnel and qualified aviation maintenance students the chance to test their aviation maintenance skills against those of their peers. The Maintenance Skills Competition runs from 10 a.m. March 13 through 5 p.m. March 14, with the award presentations starting at 9 a.m. March 15.

The William O'Brien Trophy for Aviation Tech Excellence, presented by Snap-on, will be bestowed to the team with the overall winning score from the Maintenance Skills Competition, and be on display in the winning team's facility for a year. In addition to the trophy, Snap-on is awarding more than $75,000 in tools and equipment to other top finishers in the competition.

Snap-on's expanded involvement with AviationPros Live and the Maintenance Skills Competition demonstrates its commitment and partnership with aviation technicians to further their profession.

“The AMT Society is pleased and honored to count on the continued support of Snap-on for the next three years,” said Tom Hendershot, executive director, AMTSociety. “Snap-on has been a stalwart in promoting excellence in the aviation maintenance profession and this partnership renews and reinforces that commitment to the future of the AMT Society and its members.”

“We are very pleased to expand our relationship with AMTSociety and strengthen our involvement in the Maintenance Skills Competition,” said Andy Ginger, president, Snap-on Industrial. “When it comes to aviation, Snap-on is much more than simply a tool and equipment supplier. We pride ourselves in working closely with the industry to develop solutions and become a true partner with aviation techs. That's the added value Snap-on brings to this critical industry.”

Attendees to AviationPros Live and the Maintenance Skills Competition will also be able to tour Snap-on's Advanced Technology Lab (ATL) vehicle. The ATL is a customized interactive lab on wheels that brings the Snap-on experience and aviation capabilities, such as the latest in tool innovation, hand and power tools, tool control and asset management, to its customers for hands-on demonstrations.

For more information about Snap-on, call 877.740.1900, or visit; for information on the AMTSociety Maintenance Skills Competition, visit

About Snap-on Industrial

Snap-on Industrial is a division of Snap-on Incorporated, a leading global innovator, manufacturer and marketer of tools, diagnostics, equipment, software and service solutions for professional users. Products and services include hand and power tools, tool storage, diagnostics software, information and management systems, shop equipment and other solutions for vehicle dealerships and repair centers, as well as customers in industry, government, agriculture, aviation and natural resources. Products and services are sold through the company's franchisee, company-direct, distribution and Web-based channels. Founded in 1920, Snap-on is a $2.9 billion, S&P 500 Company headquartered in Kenosha, Wisconsin.

January 2013

2013 AMTSociety Maintenance Skills Competition

AMTSociety’s 6th Annual Maintenance Skills Competition (MSC) will be held in Las Vegas, NV, March 13 – 15, 2013.

Professional AMTs and AMEs, as well as AMT students, from around the world will be speaking out for our proud craft and profession at AMTSociety's 6th Annual Maintenance Skills Competition (MSC) in Las Vegas, NV. They will help bring recognition for the knowledge, skill, and integrity that is needed to build, repair, and maintain aircraft. Regardless of the size of an aircraft or the mission one thing remains constant and that is the AMT/AME that has custody of that aircraft's safety and airworthiness. These highly skilled individuals will be competing against each other but together they will be representatives of our craft and profession.

There are 30 scheduled teams from around the world that will be going head to head in 18 different events that highlight just some of the many skills needed in today's aircraft maintenance world. In showing the public what AMT/AMEs do the MSC also shows where AMT/AMEs came from with an event related to Charles E. Taylor. Events will test each participant's ability to troubleshoot electrical and avionic problems as well as pitot static, hydraulic, engine, NDI, and safety wiring events. There are events to challenge an AMT/AME's skill at researching ADs, window sealing, composite repair, weight and balance, and even an external power receptacle and G IV wheel and brake event.

The events presented are made possible by companies such as PPG Aerospace, Boeing, Alaska Airlines, CAE, ATP, United States Navy, FPTI, Spartan College of Aeronautics and Technology, Redstone College, Alberth Aviation, U.S. Coast Guard, Nida Corp., DFW Instruments, FedEx, AirData, and the Aircraft Maintenance Technicians Association (AMTA).

There is the William F. “Bill” O'Brien Award for Excellence in Aircraft Maintenance that is presented to the one team out of all the teams competing with the lowest overall score. And 2013 will be the second year AMTSociety presents the Professional AMT Award that is awarded to the one AMT/AME/student that is viewed as having the most professional attitude/appearance, team spirit, and attitude. This award is decided by the judges who are scoring the many events.

And what competition would be complete without prizes? The 2013 MSC continues with the tradition of tool companies providing quality tools and the biggest sponsor is Snap-On Tools. There are also tools provided by Kennedy Tool Boxes, SK Hand Tools, Stahlwille, Proto/Stanley, ProBuilt Professional Lighting, Leatherman, DeWALT, Silvertronic, Led Lenser, David Clark, Noisebuster, Protective Industrial Products, Top Flight Watches, Bennette Design Group, and Sure-Step.

In addition to the prizes stated above, AMTSociety presents the first, second, and third place team members for each category with an engraved plaque to commemorate the occasion, and there are pictures along with stories of the MSC written for the AMT magazine, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

With teams from Australia, China, Mexico, Canada, and the United States, the goal of the MSC grows in that AMTSociety is able to show the public that those within our craft belong to a brotherhood. That AMT/AMEs belong to a society of professionals with the heavy responsibility of ensuring aircraft whether they are commercial aviation, general aviation, and military or from the manufacturing floor are maintained to the highest standards possible. On behalf of AMTSociety's board of directors I invite you to come and help speak out for our craft by either competing or by just coming out to cheer on those who are competing.

December 2012

Gravity Can Be Grave

By Thomas E. Hendershot

Work stands and ladders are part of our work environment. We cannot do our jobs without them but we frequently forget how dangerous they can be. Gravity is not your friend when elevated by this equipment.

Falls from this equipment are one of the leading causes of occupational fatalities and injuries. Last year alone they attributed to approximately 163,000 emergency room visits due to falling from such equipment. We often take them for granted and get complacent when using them.

We can greatly reduce if not totally eliminate such accidents and incidents by thinking safety before use and safety during use. Read and follow all instructions, warnings, and cautions.

Report and remove damaged equipment from service and tag it until it is repaired or fixed. Choose the proper ladder or work stand for the intended task. Inspect for slippery surfaces and ensure it is not shaky or on an uneven surface. Do not overextend your reach. Use barricades/signs if placed where it can be displaced by other work activities. Engage all locks. Do not exceed the maximum load rating. Use safety harness/fall protection.

A few attentive moments before use may save you months of recovery, or death, due to unsafe use.

– Stay safe, Thomas Hendershot

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