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Live the Dream...Learn to Fly 

Skytrekker Aviation

Exciting News!  AOPA announced the winners of the 2016 Flight Training Excellence Poll, and I was one of 50 flights instructors out of 1515 that made the honor roll.

Alex, running free now...

Flying Lessons Bay Area

My story of becoming a Professional Pilot and Flight Instructor. I wanted to fly like Superman!

National Association of Flight Instructors - Master Certified Flight Instructor 2015

Dexter and Skyler

​My Special Friends

Professional Woman Pilot

of the Year 2012

Southwest Section Ninety-Nines Inc..

  CFI of the Year 2012

West Valley Flying Club

 Sue - Forest of Friendship 2014         California Flag and the Redwoods               Amelia Earhart Bronze  

     Sue-Inducted into The               Grounds of the Forest of Friendship                  Amelia Earhart                        Forest of Friendship                                                                                        Birthplace Museum

                                                                                                                                 Atchison, Kansas

This year for the second year in a row, I was one of 63 instructors out of 1500 nationwide to earn 

a spot on the AOPA Flight Training Excellence Awards Flight Instructor Honor Roll 2014  .

I was one of 69 instructors out of 956 nationwide to earn a spot on the  AOPA Flight Training Excellence Awards Flight Instructor Honor Roll for 2013Type your paragraph here.

The Seaplane Rating

Flight Instructing in the Bay Area

       Flight Instructing in the 90's                       Citation V - First Corporate Job                               American Eagle

           John Wayne Airport.                                                                                                    San Juan, Puerto Rico, Florida

                                                                                                                                               Bahamas, Cuba -- 64 Seat ATR

The International Forest of Friendship

The International Forest of Friendship is a living, growing memorial to the world history of aviation and aerospace. The Forest was a gift to America on her 200th birthday in 1976 from the City of Atchison, Kansas (the birthplace of Amelia Earhart); The Ninety-Nines (International Organization of Women Pilots), and the University of Kansas Forestry Extension.

The Forest of Friendship is a pretty amazing place in Atchison, KS. I truly felt honored to be among the women and men that have been inducted into the Forest. 

This June (2014) was my second visit, the first time was the year the 99s Museum of Women Pilots in Oklahoma City was dedicated in 1999.  That year I flew a Cessna172 to Oklahoma City and then on to Atchison...what an adventure. 

The accomplishments of the women being honored at the Forest of Friendship were nothing less than awe inspiring; from astronauts to a 35 year career veteran of United Airlines who retired as seniority position one – WOW. There were lots of 99s and several there from our Southwest Section, many in support of others being inducted.

Qualifications, certificates, and ratings

Certified Flight Instructor - Airplane Single Engine Land-Instrument
Airline Transport Pilot-Airplane Multi Engine Land
Airplane Single Engine Land/Sea-Commercial Privileges
CE-500 Citation V Type Rating

I instruct in the following aircraft types:  C152, C162, C172, C172SP, C172RG, C182, C206, G1000
I am a full-time flight instructor.  We can schedule your flying lessons on weekends or weekdays as my schedule is very flexible.

What will you get if you choose me for flight instruction?  The Top 5


    • I love to teach and am here to help you pursue and achieve your goals and dreams of flying
    • I teach according to the individual student based on each persons background, temperament, and unique ways of

          learning and absorbing material (I don't use a cookie cutter method)
    • I am committed to safety in every flight, as well as having fun and enjoying the thrill of it all
    • I am a career Full Time Flight Instructor and am flexible to meet your schedule
    • I have experience with the airlines, in the corporate flying sector, as well as thousands of hours of instructing

Awards

NAFI Master Flight Instructor 2015

AOPA Flight Training Excellence Award Flight Instructor Honor Roll 2014
Inducted into the International Forest of Friendship 2014
AOPA Flight Training Excellence Award Flight Instructor Honor Roll 2013
CFI of the Year - West Valley Flying Club 2012
Professional Pilot of the Year - The Ninety-Nines Inc. - Southwest Section 2012
Professional Pilot of the Year - The Ninety-Nines Inc. - The Santa Clara Valley Chapter 2008
Professional Pilot of the Year - The Ninety-Nines Inc. - The Orange County Chapter 2001
Pilot of the Year - The Ninety-Nines Inc. - The Orange County Chapter 1998
Most Outstanding New Member - The Ninety-Nines Inc. - Orange County Chapter 1997


Biography

I graduated with a degree in Ornamental Horticulture and immediately set out to pursue my passion for plants by starting an Interior Plantscaping company, Garden Habitats Inc.  I received my Landscape Contracting License in 1982.
 
After owning and operating a successful, “award winning” Interior Plantscaping company for more than 20 years, providing the interior plants for some of the largest and most prestigious companies in Southern California, and working with some of the most creative and talented people in the business, I was looking for a new and exciting challenge.
  
I had always wanted to fly, but that image had been of “flying like superman”.  Then one day while searching for this new challenge, I realized that maybe I could fulfill that dream, but in an airplane.  So I was off to the airport, found the perfect instructor, and 5 months later in 1996, got my private pilots certificate.  I joined the 99s – The International Organization of Women Pilots, and a whole new world opened up.  I was flying everywhere, meeting new people, flying in air races, and having a blast.
  
Next came my instrument rating.  Then in 1997 I decided it was time to sell my company and move on to new adventures.  I was bitten by the “flying bug” and I proceeded to get several more ratings, including my instructor rating, taught flying for a year, got a Citation Jet Type Rating, then got hired by the airlines and moved to sunny Puerto Rico to fly to 25 destinations in the Caribbean.  I was truly living my dream.
 
Then 911 happened and everything changed.  I stayed at the airlines another two years, flew throughout Florida, the Bahamas, and Cuba, and then resigned.
 
Realizing the industry changed after 911 and wasn't what I had hoped for, I left, only to discover that what I truly loved about aviation was flying small aircraft and the enthusiastic pilots and future pilots that can be found at local airports.
 
Sue Ballew
Certified Flight Instructor

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"In the beginning, I wanted to fly like Superman.  Many years later, I finally realized I could fly, but in an airplane"

                                            Sue Ballew

My Story - Learning to Fly