Al Spain

Aviation, Lecturer

Office: DSCH 305   |    Phone: (308) 865-8337   |    Email:

Al Spain


Al Spain brings over 60 years of operations leadership to UNK with a career traversing aviation, military, airline, and corporate flight operations. Professional experience includes Co-Founder and Senior Vice President of Operations at JetBlue Airways, Vice President of Flight Operations for Continental Micronesia Airlines, Designated Director of Operations for both Continental Micronesia and JetBlue, and a Chief Pilot for Oceanic Contractors, a privately owned airline operating in Dubai. As a combat pilot in Vietnam, he earned the Bronze Star, Purple Heart, and Air Medal for Valor. From the Federal Aviation Administration, he received the Wright Brothers Master Pilot Award for more than 50 continuous years of safe flight operations. He works with the Unmanned Aircraft System development and is a member of the Association of Unmanned Vehicles International. He is also a member of the National Academies of Science on the National Research Committee for the National Aviation Operations Monitoring Service (NAOMS) and Research and Development for Wake Turbulence, and an emeritus member of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics. At UNK he serves as Program Coordinator for the Federal Aviation Administration Safety Team (FAAST).


M.B.A., Business, John Molson School of Business - Concordia University
B.S., Professional Aviation, Louisiana Tech University

Area of Expertise and research

Aviation safety management
Federal Air Carrier certification
Domestic and international airline operations management

What do you consider the most important thing on your curriculum vitae?

Sixty-plus years of domestic and international operations leadership experience.

Why did you go into teaching?

To share that experience with the next generation of leaders who will face the challenges of the real world.