External Aviation Advisory Board launches at Ohio State

Posted: May 25, 2021
Image of aerial view of KOSU

The Ohio State University Center for Aviation Studies and The Ohio State University Airport announce the launch of their newly established External Aviation Advisory Board. Spanning industry, aviation organizations and academia, the 14-person team will advance and further unify Ohio State’s aviation activities.

“Aviation studies at The Ohio State University spans the breadth of engineering, arts and sciences, and business, reflecting the dynamic and multidisciplinary nature of the industry,” said John Horack, center director and professor, and Senior Associate Dean of the College of Engineering.

“We must continually assess and understand whether our education, research and experiential offerings are optimally matched to the rapidly changing nature of aviation around the world.”

Members and a student representative have been appointed by the center director. The board will meet throughout the year to make recommendations on Ohio State aviation’s direction and provide oversight on high-level planning.

Air Transportation and Aerospace Campus Executive Director Stephanie Morgan shared the importance of the board to the airport. “The external aviation advisory board brings expertise from across the government, university and private-sector landscape, helping ensure that The Ohio State University remains relevant, that we are serving our students well and that we are helping to grow a positive, exciting and productive future for aviation.”

The new board held their first meeting virtually on March 31. At the meeting Horack presented four key components as a framework to guide the group’s navigation.

“This program – and I believe all of our activities at The Ohio State University – must focus continually on improving the student experience, strengthening the breadth and impact of our research, building stronger relationships and partnering across our entire stakeholder landscape, and building a better community by being better to each other,” said Horack.

“And in focusing on these four aspects, we need to make sure the work is beneficial, welcoming and productive for absolutely everyone.” 

Future action items for the team include goal-setting focused on current challenges in aviation and preparing students to meet them.


Current board members

  • Vanessa Blacknall-Jamison: AFB Change Management Services Group, Federal Aviation Administration
  • Mary Johnson: Professor, Purdue University
  • Sean Kennedy: Vice President of Operations, NetJets Inc.
  • John Mitchell: Captain (retired), American Airlines, Inc.
  • Scott Van Ooyen: Standards Check Airman, Southwest Airlines Co.
  • Andrew Pierce: First Officer, Delta Air Lines, Inc. and Lt. Col. U.S. Air Force Reserves
  • Adam Stiffler: Corporate Pilot, Cardinal Health, Inc.
  • Claudia Zapata-Cardone: Captain, United Airlines, Inc.

Ohio State members:

  • John Horack: Director and Professor, Center for Aviation Studies; Senior Associate Dean, College of Engineering
  • Stephanie Morgan: Executive Director, Air Transportation and Aerospace Campus
  • Rod Borden: Lecturer and Senior Advisor, Center for Aviation Studies
  • Shannon Morrison: Assistant Director of Academics and Assessment, Center for Aviation Studies
  • Brian Strzempkowski: Assistant Director, Center for Aviation Studies
  • Christian Studt: fourth-year student majoring in air transportation

To learn more about each member, visit the board member directory.