As the foremost technical resource available to the general aviation community, the Pilot Information Center strives to maintain the highest standards of professionalism and technical expertise. Our skilled group of pilots, medical specialists, and flight instructors has over 70,000 hours of collective flight experience and plays a pivotal role in AOPA’s mission and objectives. During the course of a given year, our specialists respond to over 200,000 member questions and thousands of e-mails and letters.
The AOPA Pilot Information Center puts some of GA's most experienced pilots as close as your phone or email. Call 800/USA-AOPA (872-2672) Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., Eastern time or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Aviation and medical certification specialists are available to answer questions on a myriad of aviation topics, including:
Pilot and aviation-related topics
Mike Filucci, Vice President, Pilot Information Center and Flight Operations, is responsible for the Pilot Information Center which is comprised of medical certification assistance, pilot services, and digital product support. Responsibilities include assuring the quality of member support via the 800 Pilot Hotline and e-mail. Mike’s department is also responsible for producing much of the technical information content on the AOPA Web site. On the Flight Ops side of the house, the aircraft management team handles the scheduling/dispatch functions, pilot training, and tracks and maintains the AOPA fleet. The team also provides support to the AOPA Foundation for the acquisition and sale of donated aircraft. Prior to joining AOPA, Mike flew with American Airlines for 28 years. He also had a military career with the US Air Force/Maryland Air National Guard, based at Martin State Airport. Mike has been active in the general aviation community, including the GA warbird community, for many years.
Toni Mensching, Director joined the Pilot Information Center as an Aviation Technical Specialist in 2007 after flying the DHC-8 for US Airways Express. She is an ATP pilot and Flight Instructor with multi-engine, seaplane, and instrument ratings. An alumna of Delta State University School of Business, Toni has an MBA in Commercial Aviation Management and a Bachelor of Flight Operations. Toni also worked with FedEx Pilot Recruitment prior to completing her graduate degree.
Ferdi Mack, Manager, Pilot Information Center, joined the Pilot Information Center team in 2011. He has a B.S. and M.S. in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University. Ferdi spent seven years in Silicon Valley as a hardware developer for companies such as Silicon Graphics and NVIDIA, before moving home to Frederick to pursue aviation. He spent his childhood flying with his parents, who are both private pilots. Ferdi holds a commercial ASEL/AMEL as well as flight and ground instructor certificates. He is a native of Frederick and has been involved at the airport since an early age, including most recently as a flight instructor.
Craig Brown, Senior Aviation Technical Specialist, joined the Pilot Information Center in August 1997. Craig holds A&P, ATP, and CFI certificates. In his 25 years of aviation experience, he has turned wrenches, flight instructed, flown traffic watch and charter, flown internationally, and has both fixed and rotor wing experience in 97 aircraft types. He has logged over 9,700 hours of flight time and over 100,000 member requests for assistance and information since starting at AOPA. Craig lives with his wife and children near historic Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.
Patrick Timmerman, Senior Aviation Technical Specialist, joined the Pilot Information Center in 2009. Patrick holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Communications from Western Carolina University. He is also a CFI and CFII and has given over 1300 hours of instruction and has over 2200 hours total time. Patrick has taught at several flight schools in southeastern Virginia and the beautiful Northern Mariana Islands. While out in the western Pacific he also flew Part 135 on-demand charter. Patrick and his wife Maria have two sons, Joshua and Matthew.
Rodney Martz, Senior Aviation Technical Specialist, came to AOPA in 1990 from the finance and banking industry. He is a 2,000-hour private pilot who started in aviation as a lineman during college summers back in 1969. Rodney has a diverse background including real estate, FBO operations, maintenance, finance, and corporate operations. He currently owns a D35 Bonanza and a Cessna 140, both of which are getting “long-term” annuals!
Mark Milkovitz, Aviation Technical Specialist, joined the Pilot Information Center in 2011. Mark has an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Flight Training from the Community College of Baltimore County and is working towards his Bachelor of Science Degree in Aircraft Maintenance Management from Embry-Riddle University. Mark has 8 years of experience as a flight instructor as well as 13 years of experience as an aircraft mechanic working on large transport aircraft, such as Boeing 727,737,757,767 and the Lockheed C-141. Mark completed most of his flight training in the Seattle area and currently holds a Single and Multi-engine Commercial License as well as CFI and IGI certificates. Mark is always looking to build his tailwheel time but will never turn down a flight in any aircraft.
Kathy Dondzila, Manager, Technical Communications, joined the Pilot Information Center team in 2001. Kathy is a long-timer at AOPA with 27 years of experience working in various capacities within the association, including the Air Safety Institute, Seaplane Pilots Association, and AOPA’s Marketing Department. Kathy’s background is in publications and much of her work in the Pilot Information Center involves writing about aviation topics for AOPA's web site. Kathy is an instrument-rated private pilot and holds an instrument and advanced ground instructor certificate. She has a Master's degree in Business Administration.
Eddie Tyeryar, Digital Products Support Specialist, came to AOPA in 2000 to provide Local Area Network and Telecommunications support for the entire association, and then made the move to the Pilot Information Center in December of 2007. Eddie has a strong understanding of software support and web technology troubleshooting, but admits that it’s "getting under the hood" and tinkering with hardware that he really enjoys. Eddie prides himself on having a very close relationship with the AOPA’s IT and Web Development Departments. It is a liaison position that allows him to provide valuable assistance to members on the full range of AOPA's digital products.
Ty Chaudhry, Digital Products Support Specialist joined AOPA in 2013. Ty has a Bachelor’s Degree in Aviation from the University of Western Sydney. He was raised in Canada and soloed before he could drive a car. He has flown for different airlines in various parts of the world including the USA, Canada, Asia and the Caribbean, enjoying landings in famous vacation destinations such as St.Barths and Saba. A 2200-hour commercial pilot with instrument and multi-engine ratings, Ty has flown a variety of aircraft from Beech Bonanza’s & Baron’s to Caravans, DHC 6 & DHC 8 Q400. He has a passion for aviation, enjoys working with computers and helping people – and brings that experience to specialize in digital product support in the Pilot Information Center.
Sarah Staudt, Aviation Technical Specialist, started flying when she was 18 in a late 1960s Cherokee at an airport near her parent’s home in Ohio. She graduated from the University of North Dakota in 2008 with a Bachelor’s of Science in Aeronautics with majors in Commercial Aviation and Flight Education. Her certifications include Commercial Pilot, CFI, and CFII. She has been flight instructing since 2008 in Part 141 and Part 61 schools and has been an instructor and check pilot for the Civil Air Patrol since 2010. Though all of her flying, she says her favorite “flight” was a paragliding ride in the French Alps! Her husband is also a private pilot and they enjoy outdoor activities especially camping and visiting National Parks.
Paul Feldmeyer, Aviation Technical Specialist, joined the Pilot Information Center in 2013. Paul has a Bachelor's Degree in Aeronautical Science from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. He is a 2,300 hour Commercial pilot holding a Gold Seal CFI with CFII and MEI ratings. Before coming to AOPA Paul was a Flight Instructor and Check Airman at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach. He has also spent some time flying Unmanned Aerial Vehicles domestically and overseas. A native of Western Maryland, Paul now lives in Frederick with his wife.