Talking Flight

Mike Swanigan is his own guest on Talking Flight. His longtime friend, Tom Clark, interviews him on this podcast. Tom is a veteran broadcaster and he is the voice on the intro to Talking Flight. He is presently serving as the Commissioner of the South Carolina Film Commission.

Mike tells us how his aviation dream was almost derailed when he was a 16-year-old High School Student, and how he overcame many obstacles in his quest to become an airline pilot.

Direct download: Swani_Clark_TF.m4a
Category:Aviation -- posted at: 12:19pm EST

Captain Kevin Kay is the first former Fighter Pilot to join us on Talking Flight.

Kevin took an unusual path to become a USAF pilot. He was accepted to Air Force Undergraduate Pilot Training (UPT) after applying through the Air National Guard. 

Kevin tells us about how he built a network of connections at Air National Guard units around the country to help him figure out what it took to be selected for the program.

This is a great story about how hard work and perseverance helped Kevin to Achieve his dream job of flying the F-16. 

Direct download: kevin_k.m4a
Category:Aviation -- posted at: 12:03pm EST

We sit down with writer Beth Ruggiero York and talk about her new book Flying Alone, a memoir.

Beth's aviation journey begins in the mid-1980s when she started taking flying lessons and started a job as a line person at the local airport. 

Her book takes us on a wild ride that shows the exhilaration of flying airplanes and the dangers of having to work for a few unscrupulous aviation companies.

Beth shares her story with a striking level of honesty. She was not afraid to write about some of the flying mistakes that she made that could have taken her life.

The underlying theme of this book is how a young woman did all of the hard work that it took to be hired as a pilot for a major airline.

Direct download: beth.m4a
Category:Aviation -- posted at: 3:32pm EST

Today's episode is an interview with Alaska Airlines Captain Ron Limes. He is one of the two Chief Pilots at the Seattle Pilot Base.

Captain Lines shares his story about growing up in New York City, and how his 5th grade teacher got him interested in flying airplanes.

It was his High School Guidance Counselor who told him how to get his aviation dreams off of the ground.

Captain Limes also had a brilliant career in the USAF Reserves, ultimately commanding a C-17 squadron.

Direct download: Limes_Release.m4a
Category:Aviation -- posted at: 2:57pm EST

Mr. Nigel Sargent is the Director/Flight Simulation at Alaska Airlines. He is considered to be one of the foremost experts in the field of Flight Simulation.

Mr. Sargent grew up in England and worked on Simulators all over the world before joining Alaska Airlines. He started his career right after high school when he landed an intern position with the British company, Redifon. The company later changed its name to Rediffusion Flight Simulators.

Nigel tells us about his career and the exciting changes happening in the world of Simulators.

Direct download: Nigel_Final.m4a
Category:Aviation -- posted at: 6:15pm EST

Captain Phil Pope joined Alaska Airlines in 1964. He started in Ground Operations and worked his way into becoming a Flight Engineer on the Lockheed Super Constellation. He later flew the Lockheed C-130, the Boeing 727 and the Boeing 737. 

Phil tells us about his part in helping to build Alaska Airlines into the Major Carrier that it is today.

Direct download: Pope_release.m4a
Category:Aviation -- posted at: 3:58pm EST

Captain Mike Swanigan talks about how he helped his Niece get through a stressful day.

He would sometimes use the same strategy near the end of a long day of flying.

Direct download: Voice_Blog_2-_Do_Next.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 5:36pm EST

We sit down for a long-form conversation with Mr. Brad Tilden, CEO of Alaska Airlines.

Brad tells us about his life journey that eventually lead to him to become the Chief Executive Officer at Alaska Airlines.

We learn about how Brad approaches leadership, and how his late Father still has a profound influence on how he solves problems that come up at the airline.

Brad shares some excellent advice on how to be successful in business and life.

Direct download: Brad_Tilden_final.m4a
Category:Aviation -- posted at: 5:29pm EST

Captain Phil Parrish tells us about his amazing journey to become Captain for Alaska Airlines.  (Previously released in 2014).

Direct download: Phil_Parish.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:04pm EST

Captain David Mets is presently one of the two Seattle Base Chief Pilots for Alaska Airlines.


David tells us about his career as a USAF Pilot and about his transition to a Pilot career at Alaska Airlines.

We also learn that he had a three-year stint serving as Rocket Scientist at Cape Canaveral.

Several events that initially appeared to be disappointments, turned out to be some wonderful opportunities for Captain Mets and his family.

Direct download: Dave_Mets.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 7:50pm EST

This is this first in a series of short Voice Blogs from Mike Swanigan. Don't worry, we will still feature our usual long-form interviews. This is an added feature to our Talking Flight Podcasts.

A lot of people gave me some great advice during my career. I am trying to pay it forward by recording these Voice Blogs. If it helps just one person, it will be well worth the effort.

If you find any of this to be helpful, please pass it on.

Be Excellent to Each other


Direct download: Voice_Blog_1.m4a
Category:Aviation -- posted at: 12:28pm EST

Captain Kevin Nigbur is the first Horizon Air Pilot to appear on Talking Flight. He is currently flying the Embraer 175 Regional Jet on Horizon's route system.

Kevin earned an Aviation Degree in College, but he had to put his flying dreams on the back burner when he was needed in his family business.

Captain Nigbur tells us the amazing story of how he restarted his flying career after the age of 40. 

Direct download: Kevin_Nigbur_Release.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 3:49pm EST

One of the most complex pieces of running an airline is making sure that that qualified and rested pilots are available to fly the airplanes. 

We rarely hear about the men and women who are behind the scenes working to make sure that your flight is flown by a crew of qualified and rested pilots.

On this episode, we sit down with Ms. Trish Barney. She is the Duty Manager Pilot Scheduling for Alaska Airlines.

Trish tells us the background story of how she got into the pilot scheduling world and she gives an inside look at how her Pilot Scheduling Team works their magic.


Direct download: Trish_Barney_release_3.m4a
Category:Aviation -- posted at: 7:16pm EST