FSS Employee Announcements - July 2021

Flight Services & Systems (FSS) is proud to announce two promotions. Zach Jackson has been promoted as the General Manager at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) and Chitwan Kaur takes over as the Operations Manager at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA). 

Zach Jackson – DFW General Manager

Zach has been with FSS since June 2017. He started his aviation career as a ramp agent at San Antonio International Airport (SAT). Throughout the years, Zach steadily worked his way up the ladder and recently was our General Manager at SAT. He brings to DFW a long list of accomplishments including the recent success of the Sun Country Airlines charters during the NCAA Women’s Basketball Tournament in March. With his record of success and strong leadership skills, we are excited to have Zach leading our DFW crew. Congratulations, Zach!

Chitwan Kaur – SEA Operations Manager

Since joining FSS, Chitwan has been the example to follow by. She started as a security agent in early 2021. Chitwan’s leadership ability was quickly recognized by General Manager Zach Cox as he promoted her to Security Supervisor in late March. Her thirst for knowledge and willingness to share it made her an ideal candidate for Operations Manager. Chitwan is currently enlisted with the Washington Army National Guard and plans to enroll in ROTC at the University of Washington. Congratulations, Chitwan!

Supervisor Spotlight - July 2021

Flight Services & Systems (FSS) strongly believes that our supervisors make the difference every day, especially when it comes to aviation security and safety. Below are two of the supervisors who make the difference:

Nelson Doubarere III – MSY Ramp Supervisor

Nelson Doubarere III is our Ramp Supervisor at our Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport (MSY). During the pandemic, our operations at MSY came to a halt. During the unexpected downtime, Nelson stayed in contact with management and employees. He was one of the first employees to offer help on a Sun Country Airlines charter that came through. Nelson was instrumental with the Silver Airways startup a few weeks ago and helped ensure employees were trained, understood safety and security, and were ready to go.

Richard Bernard – PBI Ramp Supervisor

Overseeing the Frontier Airlines, Sun Country Airlines, and Bahamasair operations, Palm Beach International Airport Ramp Supervisor Richard Bernard makes sure his team understands the importance of security and safety. Before the start of each shift and during operations, he shares important information and then reviews it with employees throughout the day.

Congratulations, Travous Jones and Daeja Colquitt!

We are proud to announce that Travous Jones of Jacksonville International Airport (JAX) Daeja Colquitt of Savannah-Hilton Head International Airport (SAV) have been promoted to Ramp Supervisor. Both oversee compliance of our safety procedures for the Silver Airways operations at their respective stations. Congratulations, Travous and Daeja!

FSS Recognizes Military Service Employees on the Fourth of July

Flight Services & Systems (FSS) is proud to be a company that employs military service members. In fact, several of our Leadership and management team members have served or currently serving our country. Below are a few of the employees we would like to recognize and thank them for their service:

Robert A. Weitzel, Sr. – Chairman & CEO

United States Air Force

From 1957 to 1961, Robert was an enlisted Airman in the United States Air Force, Security Service as an Intercept Telecommunications Person. He was tasked with monitoring high technology communications within the Eastern Bloc communist countries at that time. Robert was stationed at St. Lawrence Island, Alaska and Kirknewton, Scotland, a Scottish Air Force facility. Both locations were sited to obtain the best reception on the targeted transmission locations. Upon serving four years and receiving several citations for exemplary service, Robert was honorably discharged in 1961 as an Airman 1st Class (E4). He also completed his first year of college through an on-station college education program before finishing his Accounting degree at the University of Akron.

Sherrie Erwin – MSY General Manager

United States Navy

In April 1983, Sherrie Erwin enlisted in the United States Navy as a non-rated Airman and went to boot camp in Orlando, Florida. After attending “A” school in Memphis, Tennessee, she was designated as an Aviation Structural Mechanic for Safety Equipment, or AME. Sherrie was stationed or assigned Temporary Duty (TAD) at numerous Naval Air Stations, Naval Air Facility Stations, and Naval Bases both stateside and international. She was just shy of 13 years before receiving an Honorable Medical Discharge in 1996 as a First Class Petty Officer (E-6). Sherrie went on to finish her Bachelor of Science degree from Embry Riddle Aeronautical University.

Jimmy Dillard – SAT General Manager & Director of Silver Airways Operations

United States Air Force

From December 2003 until October 2012, Jimmy Dillard served as a Supply Technician for the United States Air Force. During his service, he performed and monitored management and procedural application of manual or automated inventory control actions. Jimmy also prepared, analyzed, and evaluated reports, procedures, and policy data as well as researched and identified supplies and equipment requirements. Following his service, Jimmy started his career in aviation as the General Manager for PrimeFlight Aviation in San Antonio, Texas.

Chitwan Kaur – SEA Operations Manager

United States National Guard

Chitwan Kaur enlisted with the Washington Army National Guard as a senior in high school in 2019. She completed her basic training at Fort Jackson in South Carolina and currently ranks as Private First Class (E-3). In the upcoming fall, Chitwan will be starting the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps, or ROTC, at the University of Washington. She will be majoring in Criminal Administration and have Business as her minor. 

Steven Morrissey – PWM Ramp Operations Manager

United States Army

Steven Morrissey served in the United States Army from September 2003 until October 2006. He was an Infantry Team Leader and was responsible for ensuring mission readiness as well as weapon and communication equipment functionality. Steven oversaw managing 13+ soldiers while working with multiple units from branches of the United States military and various nations. During his service, Steven received multiple commendations including the Purple Heart. Upon his Honorable Discharge, he received his diploma from Savannah Technical College in Aircraft Structural Technology.

Aviation Safety - F.O.D. Walks

San Antonio International Airport (SAT) Ramp
Agents preform a F.O.D. walk before an arrival
At Flight Services & Systems (FSS), our Ramp Agents conduct what’s called a F.O.D. walk. F.O.D. stands for Foreign Object Debris and can cause havoc for an aircraft.

FSS agents are always on the lookout for trash and picking up anything they find. Pre-arrival F.O.D. walks are conducted 10 minutes before arrival. These walks aren’t done any sooner in case wind or other outside factors shift F.O.D. on the ramp area. Before the aircraft, it’s a total team effort as all agents are outside participating and provide an even spread of the ramp area.

Pre-departure F.O.D. walks are mandatory and are conducted after all equipment has been removed and closed. These walks are conducted 10 minutes before departure. Again, it’s a total team effort as our agents walk on the engine ingestion areas.

Any F.O.D. that’s found is properly disposed of in designated F.O.D. containers.

FSS Partners with Sun Country for MLS Charters

The SEA team handles a Sun Country
charter at King County International
Airport-Boeing Field on June 18th
Since May, Flight Services & Systems (FSS) has handled Sun Country Airlines’ charters for several Major League Soccer (MLS) teams. These charters are part of the continued partnership between FSS and Sun Country Airlines. In fact, during March, FSS and Sun Country Airlines partnered to handle the NCAA Men’s and Women’s Basketball Tournament. For more details, please click here. After a brief two-week layoff, the MLS charters are back up and running.

During the MLS season, our teams across the company have stepped up and made it happen. The Boston Logan International Airport (BOS) crew has handled charters at Laurence G. Hanscom Field (BED) in Bedford, Massachusetts. The San Antonio International Airport (SAT) team makes the trip to our old station, Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS), to ensure the charters are safe and secure. Our Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA) squad also makes a short drive to King County International Airport -Boeing Field (BFI). The Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) and Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD) handled charters at their respective stations.

FSS is extremely grateful for the continued partnership with Sun Country Airlines and the opportunities they present. We take pride in knowing that Sun Country Airlines trusts us with their charters and special passengers.

PWM Welcomes JetBlue and Sun Country

The PWM Ticket Counter team during the
JetBlue Airways startup on June 10th
Our Portland International Jetport (PWM) station has been busy in June. On June 10th, the PWM crew greeted JetBlue Airways to the Portland, Maine area. Flight Services & Systems (FSS) is handling the full ground handling duties. This is the first ground handling contract with JetBlue Airways for FSS in almost 10 years.

The following week, we welcomed Sun Country Airlines back to PWM. This is a seasonal operation and FSS handles passenger, security, and ramp services including ground handling.

As the aviation industry continues to rebound after the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s encouraging to see returning flights, like Sun Country Airlines, and new ones, like JetBlue Airways, take to the skies.

FSS Milestone Anniversaries - June 2021

FSS would like to recognize and say "thank you" to our employees who have been with us throughout the years. Celebrating milestone anniversaries in June are: 

15+ Years

  • Nikollaq Dishnica - BOS - 17 years
  • Karl Rodriquez - SEA - 17 years
  • Kleanthi Alabaku - BOS - 16 years
  • Moises Jackson - BOS - 15 years
  • Laurence McLarty - BOS - 15 years

10+ Years

  • Sahle Namaga - BOS - 13 years

5+ Years

  • Andon Manaj - BOS - 8 years
  • Joseph Dimafu Kashala - DFW - 8 years
  • Adam Cornett - BOS - 7 years
  • Henry Nwacke - DFW - 6 years
  • Floresha Cako - BOS - 5 years
  • Margarita Likaj - BOS - 5 years
  • Prince Omerc - BOS - 5 years
  • Getachew Tesema - BOS - 5 years
  • Thomas Mitchell - PWM - 5 years

National Safety Month - Aviation Security

At Flight Services & Systems, aviation security is everyone’s job and it starts with our training and teamwork. Our Aviation Security and Training departments have been developing an aviation industry first, virtual augmented reality (VAR) security training. You can learn about our VAR program by clicking here.

Along with our VAR program, our agents are regularly tested thoroughly on FSS and TSA standards and procedures. Our agents know that if they see something, they need to say something. When it comes to challenging an individual, our agents know what to look for and make sure the individual is where they’re allowed to be.

During security searches, our agents ensure that the proper steps are followed based on the airline specific requirements labeled and outlined in the Aircraft Operator Standard Security Program or AOSSP. Per the TSA, the AOSSP is “for operators with FAA Part 121 and 125 certificate holders and includes scheduled passenger service operations using aircraft with an FAA certified seating capacity of 61 or more seats, regardless of the number of existing seats”.

FSS: The Staffing Solution for Your Staffing Woes

At Flight Services & Systems, we understand that the pandemic has left you with staffing issues. We are here to help! FSS can provide the following services:

  • Baggage service agents
  • Mobility assistance agents
  • SkyCap services
  • VIP meet and greet services
  • And so much more!

For more information and services, please visit our website at fsspeople.com. You can also contact Nick Poorbaugh at npoorbaugh@fsspeople.com or call him at (216) 217-2330.

National Safety Month - Safety Briefings

Aviation safety is one of the top priorities for Flight Services & Systems (FSS). Our Supervisors and Team Leads conduct safety briefings every day. They use these briefing to discuss new safety topics or use them as a proper training tool to help relieve the “Dirty Dozen” factors.

Our Supervisors and Team Leads also have huddles with team members to ensure safety and are properly briefed before every flight. These huddles are held on the J-line or in the breakroom. The huddle includes:

  • Job duties
  • Flight loads
  • Training topic
  • Time frame
  • Safety discussions

We also have debriefs after flights. The debriefs are a valuable way to have the team communicate on job performance, expectations, and get real-world reports on what the team is seeing on the front line. This information can be used in future discussions, help with correcting foreseen issues, and keep the team communicating together as a whole.

FSS Welcomes Numerous Airlines to Their Stations

Flight Services & Systems (FSS) has been welcoming some new and old faces to their stations as of late. On May 28th, Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD) General Manager Patricia Pantaleon and her team welcomed Qatar Airways to the Windy City. Our Aircraft Security crew will be handling overwatch during Qatar flights. Chicago is the latest city in partnership with Qatar Airways. Our other stations include Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA) and Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport (DFW).

General Manager Zach Jackson and his crew welcomed China Airlines to the Dallas-Fort Worth area on June 2nd. The cleaning team will be performing electrostatic cleaning on an as-needed basis.

The following day, Silver Airways was greeted by General Manager Sherrie Erwin, several members of our corporate team, and our Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport (MSY) crew. The MSY startup is a continuation of the relationship that FSS and Silver Airways started back towards the end of 2020.

On June 10th, the Portland International Jetport (PWM) team welcomed JetBlue Airways. FSS will handle the full ground handling duties. This is the first ground handling contract with JetBlue in almost 10 years. We will also be welcoming back Sun Country Airlines back to the Portland area on June 17th.

With the increase of flights, restarts, and startups, it’s a sign that things are starting to change for the better. FSS would like to thank our partners for their continued support and business.

FSS Promotes Alex Porraz and Madeline Lima

Flight Services & Systems (FSS) is proud to announce two promotions. Alex Porraz of Fresno Yosemite International Airport (FAT) and Madeline Lima of Palm Beach International Airport (PBI) have been promoted to Operations Manager.

Alex Porraz
FAT Operations Manger
Alex has been part of the FSS family since 2014 and recently held the position of Supervisor. In advancing his career in the aviation industry, he will be working closely with General Manager Rhett Williams to ensure the smooth operation of FAT. Alex was recently featured in our Supervisor Spotlight in May which you can read by clicking here.

Madeline Lima
PBI Operations Manager
Madeline is another FSS employee who has worked her way up. She was our Ticket Counter Supervisor for Frontier Airlines. During the multiple Silver Airways startups, Madeline has been instrumental in helping new employees get up to speed and took on more of a leadership role at PBI. Like Alex, Madeline was also part of our employee spotlight series. You can read her article by clicking here.  

Congratulations, Alex and Madeline!

ANC Aircraft Security Team Goes Above & Beyond

Flight Service & Systems (FSS) Vice President of Operations George Nikolouzos wanted to highlight our Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport (ANC) Aircraft Security team.

According to George, our ANC security guards have been stepping up to the plates during a particular rough period of short staffing. In addition to guarding aircraft, the guards have been collecting and putting away our EZCARTS for operations. Without their help, passengers with a large amount of baggage would have missed flights. The security guards highlighted are:

  • Carlie Bungay
  • Kathleen Ingraham Nelson
  • Brian Montano
  • Mario Purnell
  • Gonzalo Tolentino
  • Khitikarnt “Ken” Ratchayotha

George especially wanted to highlight Ken. He has not only helped out with operations, but Ken has also made sure our vehicles are fueled, paperwork submitted on-time to FSS customers, and has kept in close contact with George when flights seem to be jumping all around. In doing so, George and Ken have been able to move employees around to where they’re needed the most.

On behalf of George, awesome job to our ANC Aircraft Security team!

National Safety Month - Bin Verification

Flight Services and Systems (FSS) takes aviation safety very seriously and June happens to be National Safety Month. To celebrate, we’re sharing some information on aviation safety. This week, we’re covering the topic of bin verification.

What is bin verification?

Bin verification is a process that all FSS ramp agents perform on arriving flights. A ramp agent ensures every bin is physically inspected. They’ll pull the belt loader up to the aircraft, get inside the bin (even if there’s no bags, and check every compartment to ensure nothing was left.

As an extra step, each Ramp Supervisor or Lead double checks the bin. They also take responsibility that every bin is checks on every flight. It’s just another way that FSS ensure a smooth operation.