Tony Cortes


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As the Chair of the Department of Applied Aviation Sciences I serve 36 staff and faculty members who are dedicated to expanding knowledge and fostering learning in the exciting degree fields of Commercial Space Operations, Meteorology, Operational Meteorology, Air Traffic Management, and Aerospace & Occupational Safety.

As an Associate Professor I teach an introductory safety course and a graduate accident investigation course to the future professionals of the aviation industry. During the semester I stress the philosophy and ethics of accident prevention as prerequisites for industry profitability and the complex nature of accident multi-causality.

I have developed and taught courses in aeronautics, safety, and accident investigation for universities, industry, government, the U.S. Department of Defense, and international allies. My background includes being an Evaluator Pilot, Air Safety Investigator, and Flight Analysis Programs Manager for the U.S. Air Force. I was also an MD-80 pilot for Midwest Airlines, a safety representative for the Air Line Pilots Association, a flight instructor and charter pilot for Causey Aviation, and a consultant in flight deck human factors for NASA and industry.

My past research established a theory of false cognitive expectancies in airline pilots, developed a tactile simulation of airfoil icing, and determined precursors to aircraft loss-of-control events measurable through flight data monitoring. My current research focuses on creating a crowd-sourced interactive inventory of aviation hazards.

I have a Bachelor’s degree in Physics from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, a Master of Aeronautical Science Degree from ERAU, and a Ph.D. in Business Administration specialized in aviation management from Northcentral University. I serve as the Vice Chairman of the Advisory Council for the Bombardier Safety Standdown and my recognitions include the FAA Distinguished Service Award, the NASA Honor Award, the Tunner Award for the most outstanding airlift crew in the U.S. Air Force, the ERAU Outstanding Teaching Award, and the Aeronautical Science Outstanding Performance Award.