Meridian Sponsors West Coast Flight Safety Golf Tournament

Team Meridian on the putting green at the Flight Safety Golf Tournament. (l to r): Anthony Banome, MaKayla Hambek, Tammy Vinas, Ken Forester, Kelly Pappas, and Greg Johnson.

Team Meridian on the putting green at the Flight Safety Golf Tournament. (l to r): Anthony Banome, MaKayla Hambek, Tammy Vinas, Ken Forester, Kelly Pappas, and Greg Johnson.

On Monday, April 18, 2016, Flight Safety International held its 18th Annual Customer Appreciation Golf Tournament at Robinson Ranch Golf Club in Santa Clarita, CA. Meridian was proud to be a first-time sponsor of Flight Safety’s West Coast golf outing. Every year, Meridian supports FSI’s East Coast tournament usually held in June at Centennial Golf Club in Carmel, NY. The company was well represented at Robinson Ranch by its California-based team, including Ken and Susan Forester, Kelly Pappas, Greg Johnson, MaKayla Hambek, and Tammy Vinas. Anthony Banome, based at Meridian’s Teterboro location in New Jersey, also made it out to the event.

Meridian sponsored the Putting Green competition, which was supported throughout the day by volunteers Ken, Susan, Kelly, MaKayla, and Tammy. The company set up a table that offered golfers water bottles, granola bars, hats and sunscreen. The putting contest winner was Steve Lee of Million Air, who had the low score of 5 strokes. A prize was also given to Travis Abbott of KACALP for having a score of 16, the highest number of strokes! In the meantime, Greg and Anthony braved the hot weather and played in the 90 degree heat on one of the two 18-hole golf courses.

Overall, the event was a big success, and went a long way to support the Southern California aviation community. The tournament had 205 players, setting a new attendance record for this event. There were 36 sponsors, also setting a new record. Lunch was provided during the outing, and a cocktail hour with a sit-down dinner and awards ceremony was held after the tournament. Prizes for Meridian folks included Kelly Pappas, who won a $100 raffle drawing, and Anthony Banome, who won a box of golf balls.

Meridian makes a strong showing at the Flight Safety Golf Tournament. (l to r): MaKayla Hambek, Tammy Vinas, and Kelly Pappas.

Meridian makes a strong showing at the Flight Safety Golf Tournament. (l to r): MaKayla Hambek, Tammy Vinas, and Kelly Pappas.

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Corporate Angel Network Celebrates Milestone Flight at Meridian

The Yerby family boards a Challenger 300 at Meridian Teterboro,  marking the 50,000th flight by Corporate Angel Network.

The Yerby family boards a Challenger 300 at Meridian Teterboro,
marking the 50,000th flight by Corporate Angel Network.

Meridian, the award-winning private aviation company based at Teterboro Airport, was honored to be part of an historical milestone event last week when the Corporate Angel Network (CAN) celebrated its 50,000th flight on Thursday, April 14, 2016. The empty leg flight, which departed from Meridian Teterboro, was arranged for toddler Baron Yerby and his parents Jonathan and Casey. Baron had been in New York City receiving cancer treatments at Memorial Sloan Kettering Hospital, and the family was traveling back to their home in Georgia.

The empty seat in the Challenger 300 was donated by a longtime Meridian customer. In addition to the Management Team of this customer, the event attracted representatives from CAN, the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA), and Aviation International News (AIN). A small crew of photographers and videographers were also on-hand to capture the moment.

Peter Fleiss, CAN’s Executive Director Emeritus, had this to say, “We at Corporate Angel Network are very proud to be celebrating the 50,000th flight today. It demonstrates the longevity and value of our mission, and how our organization has grown over the years to positively impact so many people who are facing the difficult challenges of battling cancer. This milestone is also a celebration of our business aviation partners whose participation has made these flights possible.”

Ken Forester, Meridian CEO, was honored that his company could play a role in this event. “The good work that Corporate Angel Network does exemplifies how business aviation gives back to the community. We are very proud of our customers who support this wonderful organization, and I am both excited and humbled that our company was able to celebrate this amazing milestone with our friends at CAN.”

Corporate Angel Network, based at Westchester County Airport, arranges free transportation for cancer patients to specialized treatment by using the empty seats on corporate jets already flying to the desired destinations. Since its first flight in 1981, CAN, a 501(c)(3) organization with Public Charity status, has provided more than 50,000 flights to adults and children whose best treatment options are often thousands of miles from home. Volunteers and a small staff coordinate the medical travel needs of patients with the scheduled flight activity of more than 500 participating corporations (including half the Fortune 100) resulting in 225 or more patient flights each month. For more information on Corporate Angel Network, go to www.corpangelnetwork.org.

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Meridian Air Charter’s Francisco Cabrera Earns FAA Aircraft Dispatcher License

Francisco Cabrera, Aircraft Dispatcher at Meridian Air Charter

Francisco Cabrera, Aircraft Dispatcher at Meridian Air Charter

Meridian, the award-winning private aviation company based at Teterboro Airport, is pleased to announce that Francisco Cabrera (a.k.a. ‘Cisco’) recently earned his FAA Aircraft Dispatcher License. The Aircraft Dispatcher is responsible for authorizing and overseeing the operation of a flight from before takeoff to after landing. Often referred to as “The Pilot on the Ground”, the Dispatcher prepares flight plans, taking into account important factors such as weather conditions, fuel requirements, and potential hazards, with knowledge of aircraft limitations and FAA regulations, to ensure the safe completion of each flight.

The certification means that Mr. Cabrera can now assume full scheduling and dispatch responsibilities in the Flight Operations department at Meridian Air Charter. He completed the program on April 4, 2016 at the FlightSafety International facility located at LaGuardia Airport in New York City. The program at FlightSafety is a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) -approved course, which fully prepares participants for the FAA Aircraft Dispatcher Certification (Licensing) Exams. The initial course exceeds FAA regulations by providing 24 hours over the required 200 hours of instruction.

In 2005, Mr. Cabrera began his aviation career working in the Line Service department at Meridian Teterboro, the company’s Fixed Base Operation (FBO). After ten years of experience and proving himself on the ramp, he expressed interest in broadening his skills to other areas of aviation, particularly flight operations. In October 2015, a Flight Coordinator position became available in the Charter group, and this was the opportunity that he had been waiting for. He interviewed for the position and was offered the job. After accepting the offer, he eventually transitioned over from the FBO to Charter into his current role as an Aircraft Dispatcher.

We are proud of Cisco for completing this challenging program. Congratulations from all of your colleagues at Meridian!

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