Aerial view of the Reno-Stead Airport taken from an aircraft flying overhead.

Information for pilots and users of Reno-Stead Airport.

Winter 2012 Stead Airport Users Association Newsletter

Download the pdf version of this newsletter.

Winter 2012 Newsletter

Manager Profile

Mike Dikun, Reno Stead Airport


Mike began his aviation career in 1987, one year after becoming a licensed private pilot. Mike spent four years working for various aircraft repair and modification facilities, as well as two small Fixed Base Operations in Kalispell and Ennis, Montana.

In July of 1991, Mike was hired as the Airport Safety Officer at Gallatin Field, a FAA Part 139 airport in Bozeman, Montana. Over the next seven years, Mike was responsible for all documentation and training associated with the FAR Part 139 Airport Certification program. Mike developed and implemented the ARFF training program, the airport’s self-inspection and reporting program, snow and ice removal program, and all other documentation and training required to meet the requirements of the Federal Aviation Administration. Gallatin Field had “No Discrepancies” in the last four FAA Certification inspections while Mike was at the airport. In addition to the Part 139 responsibilities, Mike also served as the Part 107 Security Coordinator, assisted with tenant relations, and served as the assistant project coordinator during construction of the FAA contract Air Traffic Control facility. While in Bozeman, Mike continued to fly, serving as a volunteer mountain qualified search pilot for the Montana Aeronautics Division and Civil Air Patrol. Mike also served as Squadron Commander for the Bozeman CAP squadron for 2 years.

Mike accepted the position of Airport Manager of Adirondack Regional Airport (SLK), a Part 139 airport in Saranac Lake New York in October of 1998. While at SLK, Mike improved operations and facility maintenance procedures, secured FAA funding for replacement snow removal equipment, a new ARFF vehicle, and a new ARF/Snowremoval equipment facility. Mike also worked closely with the community to maintain commercial air service to Albany. It was through these efforts that Mike was asked to testify before the House of Representatives, Subcommittee on Aviation, Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, Washington, D.C. on Wednesday, June 9, 1999. Mike testified a second time before a field hearing conducted by the same Congressional committee on Airline Service in Northern New York on September 20, 1999.

In July of 2001, Mike became the Airport and Public Transit Director for the City of South Lake Tahoe. He served in this position until the winter of 2004. The South Lake Tahoe Airport (TVL) has had a roller coaster history of success and failure involving commercial air service. Mike worked closely with the business community to an effort to bring commercial air service back to the Tahoe Basin. Mike also worked with other California airport managers and communities to secure a FAA Small Community Air Service Development grant. Unfortunately, these efforts were unsuccessful. As Public Transit Director, Mike worked with various political entities and environmental groups to solve the transportation issues of the basin.

Mike came to the Reno-Tahoe Airport Authority in August 2005. He was hired as the Airfield Maintenance Superintendent and served in that capacity until March of 2010 when he was promoted to the position of Airport Manager at the RenoStead Airport. Since joining the crew at Stead, Mike has continued to work to improve the airport’s infrastructure, while working closely with airport tenants and others to provide a high level of airport services. Mike works closely with the Stead Airport Users Association and the Aerobatic Company and Flight School, to bring various training seminars and FAA Flight Safety programs to Stead.

Mike currently sits on the Board of Directors for the Southwest Chapter of the American Association of Airport Executives (SWAAAE) and the Nevada Airports Association (NvAA). Mike continues to fly as the private owner of a 1959 Cessna 172, based at Stead.


WiFi to be Available at RTS

The Stead Airport Users Association (SAUA) Mission Statement states in part; (1) “. . .  was established to represent the interests of all tenants  . . . “, (2) “. . .  speak with a united voice  . . .  relative to safe and affordable flying  . . . while also enriching and promoting the reputation of General Aviation  . . . “ and  (3) “ . . .  will support facility improvements that enhance the Tenant experience and encourage affordable services  . . . “.

Currently, the Board of Directors (BOD) has expressed interest in funding a high visibility/high utility project of modest costs that will “give back” to a majority of the SAUA membership. It was proposed that the SAUA BOD install a password protected wireless internet system (WiFi) that would be made exclusively available to the membership.

The National Airspace System over the last two decades has become more and more dependent upon computer technology in an attempt to provide more, better and faster services at lower costs to the flying public. TFRs,  NOTAMs,  SUA active times and altitudes, and weather briefs of all types are now available online and sometimes sooner than the FSS briefer has access. A well-prepared pilot anticipating a cross-country or extended local flight must be at least computer literate enough to mission plan, check weather and NOTAMs at destination and alternate airports. Admittedly, most of this planning takes place at home, but how does the pilot update his info once he leaves home and arrives at the Stead?

While most larger airport FBOs have mission planning facilities with internet available to local and transient pilots, the Stead Pilot Lounge has a telephone available to contact FSS. As the number of iPhones, iPpads, laptops, updatable GPSs and glass cockpits proliferate throughout the pilot community, the demand for airport access to the internet is rapidly expanding. This project has been approved, and the Reno-Stead Airport is the first general aviation airport in the area to offer this service, although limited and the SAUA would be credited with keeping pace with technology. After appropriate testing, access and password codes will be provided to all SAUA members.

 *  *  *


Airport Hires Schulz as COO

Reno Gazette-Journal

December 13, 2011

Dean Schultz, a 14-year member of the Reno-Tahoe Airport Authority staff with 27 years of aviation industry experience, has been named Chief Operating Officer for Reno-Tahoe International Airport. Schultz, formerly the senior vice president of planning, engineering and environmental management for the RTAA, is replacing Marily Mora, who left the airport after 12 years in the No. 2 position. The commercial-rated pilot and certified flight instructor worked in Hong Kong for five years and also participated in planning the new international airports in Seoul, South Korea, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and Nanjing, China.

Aviation Medical Examiners in Northern Nevada

For  a longer listing and a link to the FAA Website, see

Rose Paiva                  Andrew Pasternak
775-329-3484                     775-853-9394

Carson City
Christopher Highley

Carol Ann Coats

Incline Village
Johanna S. Koch           Diane L. Higgins
775 -832-5200                   775-831-5308


FAA Conducts Outreach for General Aviation Airports

Launches General Aviation Wildlife Outreach

The FAA recently launched a wildlife poster outreach campaign for the GA Community — pilots, airport sponsors, mechanics, engine manufacturers, students at aviation schools, and aviation organizations — to increase wildlife strike reporting among this important segment of aviation. For the last 50 years, the FAA has worked to reduce wildlife strikes at airports and periodically conducts studies to gauge the effectiveness of its program. The latest study shows that the general aviation population accounts for only six percent of the total strikes reported, which is more than 100,000 reports. Through increased and concentrated educational outreach, the FAA hopes to close the reporting gap between the more than 2,000 GA airports and certificated airports that operate with an increased level of safety and oversight.

This year’s poster “Report Wildlife Strikes” depicts a caution sign with a bird inside and the simple message to report wildlife strikes. Copies of the poster have been delivered to the General Aviation Community and are designed to be placed in highly-used areas such as training rooms and break rooms.

The FAA wants to hear from airport sponsors why reporting is low and encourage them to work with the FAA to increase reporting and reduce wildlife strikes. The strike information will tell the airport sponsors and the FAA what types of wildlife are affected, the amount of damage to the aircraft and how many strikes occur at general aviation airports annually. This information will allow the
FAA to help airport sponsors develop wildlife mitigation plans to reduce wildlife strikes.


Lyon County Seeks Airport Grant

Reno Gazette-Journal, January 3, 2012

The Lyon County Board of Commissioners is seeking a $237,500 Federal Aviation Administration grant for the Silver Springs Airport.

The money would go toward master plan development and require a county match of $12,500.

The 2013-17 capital improvement program includes land expansion for drainage improvements, described as necessary because the northern end of the airport is in a flood plain.

Jim Clague of Atkins, an airport planning firm hired by the Silver Springs Airport LLC to help with the master plan, said the program is necessary for the 2012 grant application so the FAA knows of planned projects.


Math and Science Taking Flight

Nevada Appeal, by Terri Vance,

Model airplane enthusiast Ray English donated the use of several of his planes for the Aviation Education Community Event at the Carson City Airport.

“I see all these kids hanging around with nothing to do,” he said. “This will [give] kids something constructive to do. They can learn a craft that can carry them through life.”

During the community event, participants saw and flew more than 200 radio controlled aircraft and watched them do trick maneuvers. They also learned the principles of flight and will be able to build their own model airplane.

“Kids have been playing (video games), and that teaches them eye-hand coordination, but they’re not relating it to the real world,” said Paul Guttman, founder and executive director of Space Science for Schools. “They can take that same skill set they have learned and fly an airplane. We just need to get them out of the house.”

Space Science for Schools collaborated with the High Sierra R/C Club of Carson City and the Experimental Aircraft Association 403 to host the event, designed for students in grades 3-12.

Guttman said they learned aviation, math and science. “They won’t even know they’re learning,” he said. “They’re playing.”

A Fly to Learn Workshop was also available to fourth through 12th-grade teachers where they learned to incorporate aviation into the classroom. They also took a flight with a Civil Air Patrol pilot and received a half of a continuing education credit.

“We always try to incorporate a parallel program that teaches the teachers,” said Dee Frewert, education and development director for Space Science for Schools. “We believe that’s the secret to bringing it into the classroom.”

For more information, email



Got Hangar Rash?

From Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia

Hangar rash is an aviation term that refers to minor incidents involving damage to aircraft that typically originate due to improper ground handling in and around a hangar, other aircraft or objects on the ground. Such aircraft are typically considered as good as new once replaced or re-skinned.

Insurance for Your Aircraft

The part of the insurance policy which covers your airplane is usually referred to as  hull insurance  even though it covers more than just the hull of the airplane. But depending on the terms stated in the policy, it may not cover the full value of airplane, or it may restrict the insurance company’s liability to damage incurred only under certain conditions.

Ideally, the policy should be an all-risk coverage, meaning that the company will pay for damage to the aircraft in flight or on the ground, in motion or not in motion, or for the replacement of the aircraft and all equipment that is physically attached to it in event that the airplane is stolen. But even these all-risk policies must be carefully examined. The language of the policy should make it perfectly clear that in the event of total loss the company will pay the stated value, the full amount for which the aircraft is insured, and not the actual cash value. Actual cash value means that amount which is listed in the “blue book” as the depreciated value of aircraft at the time of loss, based on its age.



Woman is Charged with Flight School Fraud

Reno-Gazette Journal, by Amy Taxin/Associated Press, December 1, 2011

LOS ANGELES – Immigration officials on Wednesday arrested a woman accused of bringing foreign students to train at her Southern California flight school on fraudulent visas and without government authorization.

Karena Chuang, 28, was arrested at a friend’s house in Rancho Cucamonga and is charged with visa fraud for allegedly enrolling students from Egypt, Sri Lanka and Taiwan at her flight school, Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials said.

Chuang’s Blue Diamond Aviation school was not authorized to receive foreign students under federal government screening procedures that aim to prevent a repeat of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, officials said.

“She is not scrutinizing people, nor does she have the ability to know whether or not they have terrorist ties, which is why the whole procedure exists,” Claude Arnold, special agent in charge of ICE Homeland Security Investigations in Los Angeles, told the Associated Press.

“These people are actually going up in the air to get their training—they’re getting access to aircraft, too, and we don’t know who they are,” he said. Chuang was ordered released on a $40,000 bond with electronic monitoring, a spokesman for the U.S. attorney’s office said.


In Memorium


1935 – 2011

Charles Filippini M.D., 76, a long-time local Reno resident , who was affectionately known as “Charlie” or just “Doc” to so many of his close friends and patients, passed away in his home on November 29, 2011, surrounded by his loving family. Charles was born on January 3, 1935, in San Bernardino, California to Carlos Santos Filippini and Luz Cereceres Filippini. He attended San Bernardino High School where he excelled in music and tennis. As a young adult, he was recognized and celebrated as an accomplished and talented concert pianist.

After receiving a B.A. Degree at the University of California, Riverside, he attended the University of California Berkeley and the University of California, San Francisco, School of Medicine where he earned his M.D. His medical career began in the Emergency Room at San Francisco General Hospital where he eventually met his wife Norma Jean Spaeth, RN and Head Nurse.

Charles began his military career in the Air Force as an aero-medical flight surgeon, stationed at Beale Air Force Base in California and later at Stead Air Force Base  in Nevada where he was actively involved with the Survival School Training Program. He later joined the Reno Air National Guard where he flew as a rated flight surgeon and navigator in the RF-101 “Voodoo” and RF-4 “Phantom II”, and ultimately became the State Flight Surgeon for Nevada. He retired as a “full-bird” Colonel. Because of his expertise in Aviation Medicine and Aviation Photography, he was also invited to fly with other military flying units in the U.S. and Canada including the U.S. Navy TopGun School, the U.S. Army and the Canadian Snowbirds.

Since the 1980’s, Charles also served on the  RARA  Board of Directors  and was the Medical Director/Physician of Record for the Air Races. He had the opportunity to work closely with the FAA where he performed Class 1, 2 and 3 Flight Physicals for area Commercial and Private Pilots.

As a revered photographer, he thrived in the disciplines of nature, aerial and largeformat photography and was published in many magazines and books.

Memorial Services and a Celebration of Life for Dr. Charles Filippini were held at the RARA Hangar on December 10, 2011. Over 500 attended.