Meet our Team

NAME: Nick
POSITION: Founder, CEO & Chief Pilot (135)

Nick, founder and CEO of Heli Aviation was born in Germany. He graduated the University of Applied Science and became a Certified & State approved Economist. At the age of 16, he founded the company Herle Funkservice GmbH, which was specialized in mobile radio services for companies, airports, aircraft and public authorities. He strived and succeeded in making professional radio communication affordable for most people and financially weak firms.

Nick received his Pilot Certificate at the age of 17 and treasured most of his flying experience in Germany. Upon completion of his training, he achieved the EASA ratings to fly Robinson R44, Eurocopter (Airbus) EC120 and Bell 206 Long Ranger. In 2011, he moved to the U.S. to continue his flight training and started Heli Aviation. Currently, he holds an EASA and Instrument rated FAA Commercial Pilot Certificate, as well as an FAA Flight Instructor rating and flies and provides training in Bell 206 Long Ranger, MD500, MD600, Robinson R22/44/66, and Agusta A109.

NAME: Michael Berkitsch
POSITION: Chief Pilot (133), Chief Supervisor (137), Director of Safety

Mike was born and raised in Austria. With over 30 years flying experience of which he worked 12 years as an EMS Pilot and owned/operated his own Flight School, Mike is a great resource for Heli Aviation. In 2015, he was promoted to Chief Pilot (133) and Chief Supervisor (137) responsible for managing all operations and contract bid development. In 2017, he added Director of Safety to his role of Chief Pilot, responsible for the administrative oversight of the company’s Safety Management System (SMS) program.

NAME: Daniel A. Corleto
POSITION: Director of Maintenance, A&P IA

In June, 2016 Dan accepted the Role of Director of Maintenance, overseeing and controlling Rotorcraft Maintenance for Heli Aviation. His aviation career spans more than 25 years maintaining airplanes and mainly helicopter for large operators such as PHI, Inc. and Metro Aviation, Inc. His primary focus includes overseeing 135 compliance and operations, ensuring fast return of service of all aircraft, without sacrificing the quality and consistency of maintenance.

NAME: Gayle Sedwick
POSITION: Administrative Assistant

Gayle started with Heli Aviation in December 2017. This job was her first exposure to aviation. Gayle’s primary focus throughout her career has been to offer excellent customer service. In her current role, Gayle works closely with our CEO on various tasks including assisting with day-to-day operations and managing special projects. Her background and experience made her a valuable member of our Team.

NAME: Trevor Cummings
POSITION: Certified Flight Instructor, Commercial Pilot

Information about Trevor will follow soon…

NAME: Katie Freeman
POSITION: Certified Flight Instructor (-Instrument), Commercial Pilot

Information about Katie will follow soon…

NAME: Kenneth Gingerich
POSITION: Certified Flight Instructor, Commercial Pilot

Ken is a Sarasota native with an impressive resume in aviation. While working towards his multiple flight ratings, Ken spent three years apprenticing with Carter Aircraft, Inc. in Sebring, Florida, where he went on to obtain his aviation Airframe & Powerplant  (A&P) mechanic license. Ken also has his Fixed-wing and Helicopter flight instructor ratings, and began his helicopter flying career in the agricultural industry crop-dusting in Illinois. He now instructs at Heli Aviation, with the ultimate goal of becoming a missionary pilot in South America.

NAME: Manuel Vallaster
POSITION: European Program Manager, Certified Flight Instructor (-Instrument), Commercial Pilot

Manny was born and raised in Austria. As the European Program Manager, Manny works with our European students and has trained over 80 pilots who fly for major companies all over the world. Upon completion of his training, Manny was hired as a Certified Flight Instructor and later promoted to the European Program manager position. He handles everything from student housing to student support, prior to their training start in the U.S.