TOPGUN Commander and Chief Operating Officer Join ATAC
NEWPORT NEWS, Va., May 17, 2011 /PRNewswire/ – ATAC (Airborne Tactical Advantage Company), the U.S. leader in outsourced tactical airborne services for 16 years, is proud to announce the addition of former TOPGUN Commander Thomas “Trim” Downing to its team, and experienced businessman Ralph Kunz as Chief Operating Officer. The addition of a highly experienced businessman combined with a former TOPGUN commander continue to show ATAC’s development of “best practices” in both military and civilian operations, ensuring growth to achieve ATAC’s vision “To be the recognized industry leader for tactical aviation training to US and allied militaries worldwide, delivering cost-effective, continually advancing capabilities.”
Trim Downing recently retired from the U.S. Navy at the rank of Captain where he served as the Joint Strike Fighter Requirements Officer for Chief of Naval Air Forces. Prior to the requirements position he was the Commander of Carrier Air Wing Eleven and led two deployments to the Western Pacific and Arabian Gulf. Trim also commanded VFA-136 and the Navy’s elite weapons school, “TOPGUN”. Mr. Downing brings his experience with over 4,000 hours in fighters including the F-14, F/A-18 and F-16.
Mr. Kunz brings a wealth of experience in commercial aviation. His previous position was President of SEI of America, a startup company for the Italian parent company. Prior to that, Ralph was on the leadership team at Keystone Helicopter, Vector Aerospace and led the development and manufacturing of missile flight controls at Parker Hannifin. His management expertise spans the full range of operational functions – engineering, operations, marketing & sales, program management, customer support and quality.
Operating since 1996, ATAC provides a fleet of more than 20 high performance tactical aircraft to the U.S. military in support of training missions, saving more than $80 million in annual training costs, or $400 million over the contract. ATAC has flown over 24,000 flight hours training U.S. Navy forces, providing cost-effective advanced training. ATAC is the only civilian tactical airborne services provider approved to train at the Navy Fighter Weapons School (TOPGUN) and the Navy Strike Air Warfare Center, and also is the only civilian entity approved to fly against U.S. Air Force F-22 Raptors. The company is headquartered in Virginia. To learn more, visit www.atacusa.com.