Bruce Whitman, Chairman, President & CEO of FlightSafety International, passed away peacefully at home in the morning of Wednesday, October 10 with his family by his side. He was 85.
FlightSafety said in an announcement:
“All of us with FlightSafety are deeply saddened by Bruce’s passing and have expressed our deepest sympathy and condolences to his family. Bruce will be remembered with great admiration and affection. He will be missed by us and his many friends and colleagues in the aviation industry and beyond.
Bruce was highly-respected and held in the utmost regard by all who knew him. While his loss will be mourned by us all, we also celebrate Bruce’s remarkable life and accomplishments. We are deeply indebted to Bruce for his many contributions to the aviation industry, his service in the United States Air Force, support of our veterans and those who currently serve, his contributions to Orbis International, and dedication to educate and foster patriotism among young people.
We are thankful for his outstanding leadership of FlightSafety and especially for his friendship, guidance, and vision. In addition to his many business accomplishments, which resulted in FlightSafety becoming the world’s premier aviation training organization, he created a culture within the company of customer service, quality, trust, caring, respect, and family.
All join in expressing our appreciation for our friend, mentor and remarkable leader. We are grateful for his boundless energy, commitment to excellence, and fervent dedication to enhance aviation safety around the world.”
Bruce Whitman Bio:
Bruce Whitman joined FlightSafety International in 1961 as Assistant to the President after two years as Senior Executive Assistant with the National Business Aircraft Association. Later that year, he was elected Vice President and a Director of the company. In 1962, he was named Executive Vice President. He was promoted to CEO in 2003.
He served on the Associate Membership Advisory Council of the National Business Aircraft Association and Board of Governors and Executive Committees of the Flight Safety Foundation and the Civil Air Patrol. Bruce is a former Director and Chairman of the Audit Committee of Petroleum Helicopters and chaired the Nominating, Compensation and Governance Committees of the Aviall Board of Directors and was Chairman of the Executive Committee of PASSUR Aerospace. He was also a member of the Board of Directors of FlightSafety Boeing Training International; Aerospace Industries Association; an Executive Committee member of NATA’s Air Charter Safety Foundation; former Board of Governor and President Emeritus of The Wings Club Foundation.
Bruce is Chairman Emeritus of the Congressional Medal of Honor Foundation; Chairman of the Audit Committee and member of the Executive Committee of Orbis International; a Director Emeritus of the Civil Air Patrol and the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum. He is on the Boards of the Corporate Angel Network, General Aviation Manufacturers Association and National Aeronautic Association; Trustee of the Air Force Academy Falcon Foundation and past Vice Chairman; Trustee of Kent School; a Trustee, founding member of the Board of the National World War II Museum, member of the Executive Committee and Vice Chair of the Development Committee; member of the Board and Audit Committee of Business Executives for National Security; and Chairman of the USO of Metropolitan New York.
Following graduation from Kent School in 1951, he spent two summers as a seaman with the United States Merchant Marine while attending Trinity College, where he was on the Varsity Tennis Team for three years, and a member of Alpha Delta Phi fraternity. Graduating in 1955 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree, he was commissioned a lieutenant in the United States Air Force and earned the triple ratings of pilot, navigator and bombardier serving in the Strategic Air Command. In 1957, he was appointed Assistant to the Commander, Homestead Air Force Base.
After active duty, he attended George Washington University Law School for two years. While at GWU, he flew as a Captain for East Coast Flying Service and was a pilot in the Air Force Reserve. During that time, he was Vice President of the Trinity College Washington Alumni Association. Later he also served as Vice President of the King School Board of Trustees.
Bruce was Commodore and a Director of The Belle Haven Club, Greenwich, Connecticut, having also been Vice Commodore, Treasurer, Secretary and Chairman of the Admissions Committee. He is also a former Chairman of the Board of Directors of The Belle Haven Land Association and was its President.