AOPA has named current VP of Airports and State Advocacy Mike Ginter as the new head of the Air Safety Institute. Ginter replaces Richard McSpadden, who was killed in a plane crash in Lake Placid, New York earlier this year. Like McSpadden, who led the Air Force Thunderbirds, Ginter is a retired military pilot. He retired as a Navy Captain after 27 years as a naval aviator. He now owns a Bonanza and a Cessna 172 that is being used by his wife Donna for flight training.

“Mike is an active flyer who understands the real-world challenges GA pilots face,” said AOPA President and CEO Mark Baker. “His down-to-earth approach to making every flight safer resonates with pilots of all experience levels.” Ginter said he plans to continue the legacy of the organization. “It’s important to meet pilots where they are with practical tools and information they can really use, and no organization does that better than ASI,” he said.

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