Avionics News January 2018 - 57

going flying," he said. "We fly everywhere in the world."
Based in Cartersville, Georgia, Phoenix Air started as a small
charter company and has grown into a Part 135 airline with
worldwide operating authority. The company prides itself on finding solutions to clients' transportation needs, including modifying
airframes and generally bringing diverse parties together to find a
solution to complex requirements.
The company provides executive and group passenger service,
worldwide air ambulance service and high-priority air cargo service - including the transport of explosives and dangerous goods.
Its military contracting wing - called the Phoenix Force - is the
world's leading provider of contracted airborne electronic warfare and weapons training/testing services for the United States
Department of Defense, NATO and foreign military forces.
As such, the avionics department at Phoenix Air is crucial to
its success. Royce Smith, avionics manager, oversees the avionics requirements of the company's fleet of 35 Gulfstreams
and Learjets with a team of nine technicians. With the electronic equipment installed on board - whether for complex
medical transport or working with weaponry with the military,
for example - each airplane is customized for a precise mission and, of course, all the electronics in the cockpit or the
cabin must be compatible.
"All our airplanes are heavily modified so we don't go
by the make and model, but by individual tail numbers,"
Davis said. "We're not one for bells and whistles to create
a perfect panel, but rather work to complete the mission of

what we've been hired to do."
These days, Davis will leave his desk to fly a mission if it
holds a particular interest for him or if the company is shorthanded. "There's nothing Phoenix Air owns that I haven't flown,"
he said. As an ATP with more than 16,000 hours, Davis also is a
helicopter and seaplane pilot, type rated in a range of aircraft, and
keeps current as a flight instructor by occasionally teaching a family member or friend.
He's hard-pressed to name his favorite airplane. "I like
them all so much - maybe the Learjet," he said. He personally owns a Duke and a Twin Comanche that are primarily
used for family trips.
Like many pilots, Davis is into motorcycling and owns a
Harley-Davidson Ultra Classic. He's a skier and avid reader
of historical novels and biographies, but sometimes current
fiction such as John Grisham. He has two grown daughters:
Bethany works for Gulfstream in Savannah, and Amelia is a
school counselor.
Davis informally sums up his job: "I'm the guy who makes
sure things are done properly, ethically and legally. We have an
amazing team here from the avionics techs to the pilots to administrative people."
Between the work he loves and flying incredible aircraft, Davis
said he must agree with his wife, Deborah, who often reminds
him, "You have no legitimate complaints." q
To learn more about Phoenix Air, visit phoenixair.com.
avionics news

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2018

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http://www.phoenixair.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Avionics News January 2018

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