Dwight Roberts

by Dwight Roberts on March 12, 2019

SAFE #: S0003951

Hometown: Springfield IL, United States

Home Airport: KSPI

Occupation: Instructor

Education: BA & MA Accountancy

Pilot Certificates: Private

Airplanes Flying/Flown: Cherokees, Cheetah, C150/152, C172, C182

Educational Specialty: Aircraft Dispatcher, Instrument, Advanced

Q & A

What drew you to aviation?: I fell in love with airplanes as a child and knew I wanted to learn to fly by the time I was in high school. I took my first airline flight in 1969 when Ozark Airlines first introduced the DC-9 to the Springfield, Illinois market.

How long have you been involved in aviation education?: I earned my ground instructor certificate in 1993, so I have been involved in aviation education for 26 years.

What's your favorite part of what you do in aviation education?: I always enjoy seeing a student grasp an understanding of aviation to the point that they don’t just know the concept from a knowledge level, but they actually live the concepts being taught. In other words, they apply it in their everyday lives.

What's your least favorite part of what you do in aviation education?: Having to tell someone that they just aren’t getting the picture. It’s not fair to be taking a student’s money when they just can’t seem to grasp the basic concepts. Luckily, I have had few of these incidents.

Do you have a memorable aviation experience you'd like to share?: I have had the opportunity to meet some great pilots over the years. I have met and talked with air show pilot Charlie Wells, and have met Rod Machado and Hal Shevers. The most memorable experience was being able to meet Captain Al Haines whose crew landed the United DC-10 in Sioux City, Iowa in 1988.

Why did you join SAFE?: I view aviation education as being the the best way to instill a professional attitude in flying. For too many years, recreational pilots have viewed flying as a hobby. I believe that recreational flying can be fun but there should be a professional attitude exhibited by those pilots. That attitude starts with a professional attitude in the instructors, which I believe that SAFE and similar organization strive to promote.

What would you like to see change in aviation?: Streamlined NOTAMS. In some cases you have to read through a litany of 10 or more NOTAMS impacting operations at an airport only to get to the bottom to find out the runway is entirely closed.

Any suggestions on how the above might be accomplished?: Instead of publishing NOTAMS for the taxiways, lights, ILS, etc. associated with the closed runway, just lost the runway itself as closed with an explanation of the reason for the closure.

Who are your role models in aviation?: I grew up during the space race, so my role models would be the early astronauts.

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