Ron Timmermans, CFI, CFII
BPT Ground & Flight Instructor
As a child, I would look skyward and dream about becoming an aviator. After my older brother gave me my first flight in a Piper Tri-Pacer, I was hooked. I knew that I would one day conquer the skies as a pilot.
As I began my professional career as an architect, I borrowed money to begin flight training. I completed the ground school and passed the knowledge exam on my own and successfully passed the practical check ride in the minimum amount of time.
My initial flight lessons were in a Cherokee 140 and a Grumman AA5A at Fort Worth, Texas Meacham Airport (KFTW.) That was a long time ago — and I will soon be eligible to apply for my Wright Brothers Master Pilot Award, some 50 years after my first solo in 1972!
It has been my privilege to fly many of the ASEL production aircraft (various models of Cessna, Piper, Mooney, Cirrus, & Beechcraft) and a few AMEL aircraft (mostly Beechcraft Baron, Travel Air, Duchess, & Duke.) I have precious little glider time and tailwheel time — which is something I need to work on.
I have enjoyed more than 7,000 hours of flying airplanes, but I get equal enjoyment in providing flight instruction. It is most fulfilling to help a pilot transition to a Bonanza or Baron from another aircraft. I enjoy helping someone maintain their proficiency by reviewing flight maneuvers, gaining a better understanding of aircraft performance characteristics, or improving instrument proficiency skills.
Several years after becoming a Bonanza owner, I attended a BPT (legacy BPPP) clinic as a client. I was amazed how much I learned about my Bonanza. I pledged that if I ever became an instructor, I would want to teach in that training program.
Fast forward several years: I earned a CFI & CFII certificates, auditioned for an instructor position with Bill Hale, and joined the BPT staff as one of its ground & flight instructors.
Since then, I have taught at many of the BPT clinic locations, met a large number of dedicated pilots, and have been privileged to fly in many great Beechcraft airplanes. I really admire the camaraderie of “the BPT family.” We are so much more than just a group of pilots & companions going through flight training.
New pilots, veteran pilots, and their companions can all benefit significantly from participation in BPT clinics. Reviewing the aircraft’s flight characteristics, its systems, how to fly various scenarios, learning from fellow pilots & mechanics, and understanding how to be a more informed companion are all beneficial outcomes when pilots & companions attend a BPT clinic.
Like many pilots & instructors, I also choose to support our aviation community. I frequently volunteer at AirVenture, Sun ’n Fun, and other aviation events. I provide ground instruction for AOPA through Rusty Pilot seminars, Safety seminars, and Flight Instructor Refresher Clinics throughout the country. As a FAASTeam representative, I frequently coordinate and speak at WINGS seminars in Florida. With the Florida Aviation Network, I serve as a Host conducting interviews of aviation personalities for recorded YouTube safety videos. I have earned accreditation as a Master CFI and a Master Ground Instructor. On two occasions, I have been honored to receive the FAA “Regional CFI of the Year” Award.
My wife, Barbara, and I often joke that she purchased a Beech Bonanza and hired me as her personal pilot. We both enjoy flying Bonanza N3215U from our home in Orlando and we have flown to many locations throughout the US, Canada, and the Bahamas.