Avionics News September 2020 - 64

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David McDevitt is

the owner of Eagle

F

Aircraft.

or David McDevitt, founder
and owner of Eagle Aircraft,
a career in aviation came
later in life but a love for flying and
the industry started when he was
young. In his 20s, McDevitt learned
to fly and earned all three pilot
certificates - private, commercial and
air transport - within a few years.
He gathered experience along the
way, from serving as an electronics
technologist for scientists who
were designing and building test
and telemetry equipment for the
Defense Research and Development
Station at the Downsview Air Base in
Toronto, Ontario, Canada, to working
as product specialist and sales
representative for Texas Instruments.
At Texas Instruments, McDevitt
64

avionics news

*

september

2020

With...

David McDevitt of Eagle Aircraft

developed a talent for solving
technical issues in electronics. It
gave him the opportunity to help
some of the world's best-known
companies, including an airborne,
army and maritime electronics
manufacturer working on a Skunk
Works project.
In 1992, McDevitt opened Eagle
Aircraft at Billy Bishop City Airport
to provide maintenance and
avionics services for commercial
and general aviation aircraft.
Twenty-one years later, he opened
another location at Parry Sound
Area Municipal Airport.
Today, Eagle Aircraft joins
other Canadian maintenance
organizations in trying to keep up
with the demand for ADS-B even
as U.S. repair stations wrap up
installations. McDevitt shares his
insights on those challenges as well
as discusses how he transitioned
from electric motors to cruise
missiles to avionics.

When did you get
started in aviation?
My father was a chief
inspector at Trans-Canada
Airlines, which became Air
Canada, so aviation has always
been in my blood. I started flying
when I was 16 and couldn't
afford it. I waited until I finished
university and started flying in
my early 20s. However, I didn't
follow the aviation aspect of it
until later in my career.

If not aviation, what
did you pursue early in
your career?

I was really interested in
electronics starting in high school
and college. I studied electronics
technology, mathematics and
physics in university. After school, I
went to work for Texas Instruments
as a product specialist, which is
how I got into electronics.
Once in a while, I went out with
the salesmen. I was their technical
backup. They would bring me into a
company like General Electric when
they had trouble with their motors.
I would look at ways our product
could solve their issues. I noticed
that the sales guys were making a
lot more money than me. I thought
I should be on the road doing
this. I can solve my own technical
problems as I go.
After three years with Texas
Instruments, I went to work for
another company as a technical
sales rep, and I called on
companies like Raytheon, Litton
Systems and Westinghouse.
Especially Litton because I became
involved in the cruise missile
guidance system, which was being
developed at one of Litton's Skunk
Works in Toronto.
So that really got me involved in
aviation, and at that time I started
taking lessons and flying. While I
was on the road selling, I had a bit
of free time. I played hooky once
in a while. It took me about 1 ½
years to get my commercial and
ATP license. I enjoyed it so much



Avionics News September 2020

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Avionics News September 2020 - Intro
Avionics News September 2020 - No label
Avionics News September 2020 - Cover2
Avionics News September 2020 - 1
Avionics News September 2020 - 2
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Avionics News September 2020 - Cover3
Avionics News September 2020 - Cover4
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