Tag Archives: People

Celebrating the U.S. Air Force’s Birthday

SkyWest is home to more than 3,000 Veterans and active-duty servicemen and woman, including hundreds who served in the U.S. Air Force. As we celebrate the Air Force’s 73rd birthday today, we asked a few of our MSP-based pilots to share how their experiences from the Air Force prepared them for working at SkyWest.

Adam Galloway, CRJ Captain, MSP
Galloway is a Major and is a C-130 pilot. When he is not flying for SkyWest or the Air Force, he enjoys working on his Stinson.

Adam Galloway

Adam Galloway

Galloway joined the Air Force after being inspired by his grandfather’s stories as a bomber pilot in WWII. He meet his wife his wife when they both were deployed.

Galloway started as a maintainer, and says this background makes it easier to draw the entire picture of what’s going on inside the airplane.

Although Galloway spends a lot of time flying, he says the differences in military flying and commercial flying keep him balanced.

“Military flying involves more stick and rudder, while commercial flying is almost completely instrument flying,” said Galloway.

Joining SkyWest in 2013, Galloway said he has enjoyed learning about the inner workings of an airport and all pieces that must be put together for successful commercial flying.

“Flying commercially allows me to meet a lot of new people and visit a lot of places I’ve never seen before,” said Galloway.

Mike Nelson

Mike Nelson

Mike Nelson, CRJ Captain, MSP
Nelson was a crew chief on the F-16 from 1994-97, flight engineer on the C-130H3 from 1997-03, and a flight engineer on the E-4B (747-238) from 2003-16.

Nelson always loved being around planes while he was growing up and took every opportunity to learn about them. He acquired his PVT, COM, INST, CFI, CFI-ME in 1992 and joined the Air Force in 1994, with aspirations of becoming a fighter pilot.

“Before I knew it, I was 21 and was too old to be commissioned to go through undergraduate pilot training. I decided to take another road to get onto the flight deck…flight engineer,” said Nelson jokingly.

When it came to transitioning from the military to a civilian career, Nelson says that SkyWest was the only airline he interviewed with because he was knew it was the place for him. Four years later he continues to be extremely grateful to be a “SkyWester.”

Nelson doesn’t feel his status as a Veteran makes him stand out more than any other employee, but he does wear his Air Force tie tack with great pride and dignity. He loves working with crewmembers who are also Veterans and enjoys the comradery and friendly banter between the different branches of service.

“When another one of my crewmembers is a Veteran, the flight is like hosting a family reunion, regardless of which branch of service,” said Nelson. “For the most part, coming from the military to SkyWest was a seamless transition.”

Adam Bixler CRJ First Officer MSP
“I am a third-generation military member,” said Bixler. “I joined the Air Force to do my part in serving and protecting our country.”

Adam Bixler (right) and his brother

Adam Bixler (right) and his brother

Bixler started his career as a Maintainer with the Air Force and noted that having a maintenance background gives him a unique perspective to the larger operations at SkyWest. In addition to flying at SkyWest, he is also a crew chief on the C-130 Hercules.

“There is an old saying, ‘without mechanics, pilots are just people with cool sunglasses,’” laughs Bixler, who then points to the entire team who makes up a successful flight.

“SkyWest is a family,” said Bixler, “They care about their employees. I have seen this proven many times over, and I intend to continue to do my part to ensure this tradition of excellence continues.”

“I have two of the greatest jobs that I can imagine.” stated Bixler, “SkyWest and the Air Force have each given me many opportunities and experiences for which I am eternally grateful.”

Thank you to Captain Galloway, Captain Nelson, and First Officer Bixler, along with all those who have or are presently serving in our military. We appreciate your service and are glad to have you as part of the SkyWest team. And Happy Birthday to the United States Air Force!



SkyWest CEO Named a Utah Business CEO of the Year Honoree

SkyWest congratulates CEO Chip Childs, who was selected as a Utah Business CEO of the Year Honoree for 2020.

Selected from over 200 nominees of top Chief Executives across the state, Childs’ leadership contributions in the state were recognized in March and officially announced in June for being a leader in the airline industry and for his work across organizations.

Chip has been known as a leader in the aviation industry for years, but this award recognizes the importance of his leadership in the state of Utah, with SkyWest is a key part of the national transportation system through its four major airline partnerships.

Part of his nomination for the award read, “Chip’s vision and strategy continue to drive success and helps support vibrant economies with air service in small to medium-sized communities connecting them to the broader national airspace. Under his leadership, SkyWest continues to set the standard for excellence in the regional industry.”

Chip was also recognized for his unique approach and transformative leadership, and for implementing a significant fleet transition plan for improved profitability and efficiency while continuing to enhance a culture of respect, teamwork and communication across the organization.

CFO Rob Simmons, stated, “he does an amazing job running the company with the numbers, but also with the heart.”

 Chip’s focus has always been the people of SkyWest. He said, “I’m just a lucky guy to represent the amazing professionals at SkyWest. It’s an amazing responsibility to “hire the best, train the best and treat them the best, and that philosophy is the backbone of what SkyWest accomplishes each day.”

Congratulations Chip, and thank you for your leadership! 

Mother Son Flying

Mother and Son Take Flight Together

Family Flying Together“Mom, secure the cabin.”

Trenton Crull’s announcement from the flight deck was a moment a lifetime in the making and a thrill for both him and his mom.

“I’ve had the privilege to fly both my mom and dad while they were passengers on my flight before, but being able to work with my mom as the flight attendant was pretty special,” said Trenton. “Being able to say, ‘Mom secure the cabin’ just made it all that more meaningful.”

Trenton is a SkyWest CRJ captain based in Colorado Springs, Colorado (COS) and Melodee Crull is a flight attendant based in Minneapolis, Minnesota (MSP), so the opportunity to work flight 4037 between Minneapolis and Bismarck, North Dakota together earlier this year was a rare treat.

“I told my passengers they were part of a very unique flight, as my son was one of the pilots and we were working our first flight together. ‘Mom, secure the cabin’ definitely brought laughter from the passengers,” said Melodee. “As I sat in the jumpseat upon takeoff, it was hard not to tear up thinking about my son flying the plane that I was working as a flight attendant. It’s not often that so many dreams come true in one day!”

Mother and son have crossed paths a few times since Trenton’s early days at SkyWest when he was stationed in Detroit, Michigan (DTW). Once Trenton moved to COS, their schedules got more difficult to coordinate.

“I have wanted to do this since I found out Trenton was joining me at SkyWest in November of 2017. Believe me, we’ve tried several times to get things to work out,” said Melodee.

“Luckily I had three weeks off waiting for my captain Initial Operating Experience and I found a trip to pick up in MSP,” added Trenton. “There was already a flight attendant on it, but my mom messaged her and worked it out to get on that trip.”

Melodee attributes her love of airplanes to her father, who worked at Cessna and Boeing in Wichita, Kansas when she was young. Being a flight attendant was always her dream, but for several years she filled her life with caring for a family. In 2017, the perfect opportunity came for Melodee to revive Mother and Son Flighther childhood dream and she interviewed with SkyWest.

“I love my crews. I have made so many great friends and anyone who has flown with me knows, I am a bit of a comedian and love to joke around and have fun. I also love interacting with my passengers! I have so much fun kidding around with them,” said Melodee. “I love that SkyWest has provided the opportunity to visit places I would otherwise never have got to visit.”

Her happiness at SkyWest influenced Trenton’s decision to come to SkyWest as well.

Melodee remembers her son aspired to be a pilot as early as the 2nd grade. A local pilot in the Crull’s hometown would take kids up on a flight as a reward for completing a school reading program every year and Trenton got to fly with him a few times.

“After that first flight I was hooked. I loved flying, but I didn’t know how to make it a career,” said Trenton. “It wasn’t until after I graduated high school that I started looking at how to pursue aviation as a career.”

Trenton completed flight training at the University of Central Missouri. He taught there for about a year after earning his certifications and then took a job flying private jets in St. Louis. When he earned the flight hours and experience to move to a regional airline, and with some urging from his mom, he applied at SkyWest.

“I remember texting him and saying, ‘YOU HAVE TO APPLY WITH SKYWEST! This company is amazing,’” recalled Melodee.

“She talked highly of SkyWest as a company and how fun the crews were and it was then that I started looking more in-depth at it,” said Trenton. “She was a big factor in my decision to come to SkyWest.”

“Trenton has recently finished his upgrade to captain and I couldn’t be more proud,” said Melodee. “He is a great person, with compassion for people and he truly loves his career, that’s what makes him a great pilot. I would be honored to fly with this captain any day.”

Thank you to all the moms like Melodee who inspire us to pursue our dreams in the aviation industry.