Andy had his first experience with aviation his senior year of high school when he enlisted in the Air Force with the North Dakota Air National Guard as an aircraft mechanic at age 17. Following the footsteps of his older brother, he began taking flight lessons the following summer. The day of his first solo flight, he knew he wanted to make a life in aviation. As a traditional guardsman in the Air Guard, Andy attended North Dakota State University where he studied Mechanical Engineering.
While enlisted as an aircraft mechanic, Andy worked on several aircraft stateside and deployed including the B-1, C-5, C-17, C-21, C-130, E-3, E-8, F-15, F-16, KC-135, P-3, and RC-135. Following college, Andy worked at an Aerospace and Defense Engineering company in Minneapolis, MN where he oversaw the assembly process of the Boeing 747-8 internal wing structures as a manufacturing engineer. It was during this time that he got his break and was hired as a pilot candidate with the North Dakota Air National Guard.
Andy attended USAF Specialized Undergraduate Pilot Training at Laughlin Air Force Base in Del Rio, TX. After approximately two years of various training programs, he returned to the 177 Airlift Squadron in Fargo, ND to fly the C-21 Lear jet. Since 2014, Andy has flown the C-130 with the Air Force Reserve in Minneapolis, MN. He has flown in over 40 countries, multiple combat deployments, and has participated in several multinational NATO exercises all across Europe.
Andy started his commercial career at Compass Airlines and is currently a 737 First Officer at Delta Air Lines. He enjoys staying involved with the local aviation community in many organizations and continues to fly general aviation, recently completing his commercial Sea Plane Rating. With a background in aircraft maintenance, design, and in military and commercial operations, Andy enjoys sharing the diversity of aviation possibilities with ACE campers and looks forward to camp every year!