Thanks to All; SAFE Surveyed #1

SAFE recently celebrated a 10th anniversary and just this spring polled #1 in an FAA national survey as the top resource for pilots and CFIs! At this special time of year, we offer sincere thanks to all the amazing people who have worked so hard throughout these years to enable SAFE’s growth and ultimate success. Though SAFE endured some tough financial times through the years, there were some amazing “home runs” as the organization grew.

The Pilot Reform Symposium in 2011 shook the aviation industry and led directly to the development of the new FAA ACS. Our Pilot Proficiency Project grew into the nationally available EAA 365 initiative. The CFI insurance program SAFE created continues to be the best value in the industry; also gratefully used by the 100+ DPEs in our membership! SAFE has worked very hard to improve aviation safety with industry leaders like Doug Stewart and Rich Stowell testifying on behalf of SAFE in front of the NTSB for aviation flight training. Our participation in FAA national forums has been a constant force for positive industry change. Thank-you to these important individual leaders!

“SAFE members are the movers and shakers of the flight training community!” FAA Administrator Randy Babbitt at SAFE Symposium 2011

Since its founding in 2009, SAFE has been the “scrappy underdog,” frugal and struggling, supported entirely by member donations and lots of “sweat equity” from generous volunteers and industry sponsors. Great thanks goes to all our generous sponsors who have enabled our growth. Incentives like the 1/3 off Foreflight go a long way toward inspiring membership!

It was a wonderful shock and validation of our efforts when SAFE was finally recognized as the #1 source of aviation proficiency resources this spring. The FAA WINGS program commissioned a comprehensive survey conducted by AOPA to evaluate strengths and weaknesses in their program and also discover what pilots and CFIs needed and valued in the industry. SAFE came out on top! We are so grateful for this honor and thank all our members and sponsors for getting us to this leading position in the aviation industry. In so many ways, this is just the starting gate for many amazing projects ready to grow and bring new value to the industry.

The Toolkit App, introduced in 2015, was only intended as a short-term substitute until our website was remodeled. This tool grew to became our flagship offering that now supports thousands of daily users. This single resource also spawned this SAFE blog and initiatives like SAFE CFI-PRO™. Held initially at KFDK last fall this program is now offered to flight schools and universities.

Most recently the very popular SAFE Checkride Ready!™ was launched on the app and is growing at an exponential rate. Thank you for using and supporting all these programs and contributing your ideas and suggestions. (The “responder” on the app comes directly to my phone!)

SAFE is finally nearing final launch of our new website as the developer installs recent changes to plugins that will finally allow us to migrate our membership database from Authorize.net over to Stripe around January 2021 (can’t wait!) The courses and resources available on this new site are amazing (but no wine before its time…)!

So thanks again and wishing everyone a very Happy Thanksgiving. Your amazing support through the years has made all this possible.  Please consider an additional gift to support our website transition or help fund our STEM scholarships. Just click into our easy Give2SAFE portal. Additional gifts to SAFE, outside of the usual membership dues, are completely tax-deductible through our educational not-for-profit status. Have a safe holiday and thanks again for your support: #flySAFE


“Checkride Ready!™” is on the (newly updated) SAFE App this week. (If you have it installed, just close and reopen for updated app.) This new section is directed toward pilot applicants and shares the common problems DPEs see repeatedly on check rides (pink slip). Download the (free) SAFE App. today!

About the author

David St. George

David St. George is an FAA DPE (Sport to Multi ATP) and a Part 135 charter pilot flying the Pilatus PC-12 in the NYC area. He recently renewed his Master Instructor for the tenth time and is a Charter member of SAFE. Formerly a 141 Chief Instructor for over 25 years, with a Gold Seal CFI. David started flying at 16 and has logged over 15,000 hours. He owns a 1946 7AC Aeronca Champ and wrote the SAFE Toolkit app.


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