Russell K. (“Rusty”) Henson has been flying since 1974 and earned his first Instructor certificate in 1991. He purchased his first airplane in 1977, his first helicopter in 2000, a multi-engine aircraft two years later, and has amassed over 6,000 (accident-free) hours. Henson holds the highest grade of certificate, the Airline Transport Pilot, and is qualified to teach single engine, multi-engine airplanes, helicopters and instrument flying in all of these aircraft as a US FAA certified flight and ground instructor (CFII).
Trained as an engineer and working as an airport consulting engineer in the planning, design, and construction of airports, he received his Master’s degree in Civil Engineering in 1981 and retains his Registered Professional Engineer credentials in Illinois, Colorado, and New Mexico.
As a Resident Engineer with the United States Federal Aviation Administration, he was responsible for managing construction of aviation navigational aids: Instrument Landing Systems, Approach Light Systems, Terminal Radar, etc. Adding to his instructor credentials, Henson also received Cirrus Standardized Instructor Pilot (CSIP) training and certification at the Duluth, Minnesota factory in 2011. The Cirrus is a high performance Technically Advanced Aircraft (TAA) incorporating avionics and automation found in modern “state-of-the-art” cockpits. While teaching Mountain Flying courses in Eagle Colorado, Henson was also invited to attended ground school for high-altitude helicopter operations training at the Colorado Army National Guard facilities (HAATS).
Henson periodically participates as a volunteer Instructor in the Pilot Proficiency Program at yearly AirVenture events in Oshkosh, Wisconsin through his membership in the National Association of Flight Instructors (NAFI) and the Society of Aviation and Flight Educators (SAFE).
He has provided flight training, aerial photography services, flown aerobatics, and has flown for a Part 135 air taxi operation in Alaska. Traveling to southern Africa, he co-validated his US FAA license, rented an airplane, and toured several countries there. His flying destinations in the western hemisphere have included landings in every US state except Maine and several flights in single and twin-engine airplanes ranging from Nicaragua to the Arctic Circle. Also included in his resume is extensive mountain flying and high-altitude instructional experience in Colorado over the course of 25 years spent there.
Henson returned to the US from to Mexico after twelve years, during which time he was the co-founder of Jovenes Aguilas de Mexico in San Miguel de Allende, a youth-oriented program modeled after the Experimental Aircraft Association’s “Young Eagles” program (over two million children flown). As a volunteer pilot and event coordinator, he has worked to promote General Aviation in Mexico and has introduced hundreds of children to aviation since 1995.
Our company Alas de San Miguel (Wings of Saint Michael), LLC is based at the Santa Fe, New Mexico airport (KSAF) and is also available throughout the southwest to provide ground and flight training in owner’s airplanes or helicopters.
We look forward to flying with you!