Avionics News February 2021 - 45

Nashville, Tennessee, to work on maintenance, repair and
overhaul of commercial E Jets including the E170 with about
70 seats and the C190 with about 100 seats. His job was to
schedule the heavy maintenance and modifications for these E
Jets that had just been introduced and were the subject of plenty
of service bulletins.
After several years, he decided he missed the personal
interactions in business aviation at about the same time that
Embraer was opening service centers for the Phenom 100.
He knew a lot of people in the industry in Connecticut, so he
helped Embraer's managing director in Nashville staff the new
service center at Bradley International Airport at Windsor Locks.
He ended up doing maintenance sales for all three of the new
Embraer business jet service centers and moved to Phoenix,
Arizona.
After the U.S. economy began to recover from the Great
Recession, he moved to the Embraer facility in Windsor Locks
in 2011 and reached his goal by becoming the general manager
there. He thought this would be his last move and so did his
wife who was from Connecticut. The service center grew larger
until 40 people worked there, and the facility under Peterson's
leadership was winning lots of customer service awards.
Then Pro Star called because Harriman was looking for a
general manager. It was too good an opportunity to pass up.
What Peterson brought with him was what a company that
started out as a garage-band avionics shop was still missing -
some additional big aerospace company experience. Peterson
had learned his craft at Bombardier and Embraer and could fill
in some gaps on processes, procedures and the application of
standards.
Peterson worked on the implementation team at Embraer
on installing Quantum Control enterprise resource planning
software in 2007, so it was interesting when he arrived at Pro
Star in 2017 to see the same system had just been installed.
Based on his experience at Embraer, he saw ways to make
significant improvements. It was hard to get analytics out of the
system at the time, and a lot of data was not being loaded on
the system and was still handled in paper form. " We had to flip
the mindset of having everything done on paper, " he said. Not
only would this help him as general manager to use the analytic
features to understand how the business was running but also
to help the company manage its projects with real-time work in
progress analysis.
" The first thing we did was reimplement the software
program, " he said. Pro Star also established an employee
training lab to help the workforce become comfortable with a
new way of doing business. The company also cleaned up the
design of its business forms to remove extraneous information
so that a professional looking product could be presented to a
customer.
The company is also working to meet ISO 9100 standards for

quality control by the end of 2021. Pro Star is spending the time
and money now to prepare to complete an audit late this year.
The New Hampshire company has been doing work for BAE
Systems for 20 years, and it is now requiring suppliers to meet
ISO 9001.
Pro Star has worked on special-mission aircraft and dealt
with intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance systems,
self-protection systems, electro-optical, infrared, satcom
and radiation sensing systems. This work has been directed
by Donald Fleurant for 14 years. He is a former U.S. Army
helicopter mechanic.
Pro Star has also done supplemental type certificate and
organization designation authorization approvals on jobs like
these. The ISO 9001 qualification will help Pro Star with other
customers and perform quality control on all its work.
Peterson also launched the first marketing campaign for
Pro Star, which did not have one before he arrived. The new
primarily online advertising and marketing materials all tie into
the company website. He hired Jessica Power of Power Aviation
Strategies because she began her career in aircraft sales and
acquisition and worked for many year in sales and marketing
positions in the avionics industry. " She understands maintenance
and avionics and the aviation community, so our marketing
effort is spot on, " Peterson said. Power said she considers the
avionics industry her family and is busier than ever as the
pandemic has spurred interest in online marketing.
Pro Star also does over-the-counter part sales and sells STCs
it has developed. The STC business is already substantial
and will grow because Pro Star is obtaining European Union
Aviation Safety Agency approval to sell its STCs in Europe.
" We have sold quite a few STCs overseas, " said Peterson,
including in India.
The company recently completed its first modification of
an Embraer aircraft by upgrading the flight deck of a Phenom
300 owned and piloted by local celebrity Dean Kaman who
invented the Segway human transporter. Kaman has been a
longtime customer. He holds more than 1,000 patents and lives
in Bedford, New Hampshire, near the Pro Star facility. Peterson
said his company installed a Garmin 1000 NXi upgrade and a
new Garmin radar on the Phenom 300.
During the past two decades, Pro Star has served the
White House on several occasions during presidential trips
to New Hampshire by supporting helicopters operated by
Marine Helicopter Squadron One.
During the 2020 presidential race, the facility was used
twice for campaign rallies - one with a crowd inside the
company's hangar with Air Force One parked out front and
the other with the crowd outside and Air Force One as a
backdrop. q
To learn more about Pro Star Aviation, visit prostaraviation.com.
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http://prostaraviation.com

Avionics News February 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Avionics News February 2021

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Avionics News February 2021 - Intro
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Avionics News February 2021 - Cover2
Avionics News February 2021 - 1
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