Meet the Team

Dave Parker

Owner, Airport Manager, CFII, A&P IA

Dave Parker’s love of aviation traces back to buying his first 5-cent airplane on the way home from first grade.  Upon reaching 18 years of age he received his private pilot license through a Boy Scout Explorer post.  By age 21, he had earned his Commercial, Instrument, and Certified Flight Instructor ratings.  He had also built an airplane.  The 230 mile-per-hour Glassair sport plane was the 50th aircraft of its type to be built in the world.  Dave learned aerobatics in the plane and demonstrated it at air shows throughout the Northwest.

Dave now has over 10,000 hours flying with over 3,500 hours of flight instruction in many different aircraft.  He enjoys giving flight lessons, tracking wildlife, improving aircraft, and meeting all the neat people that make up the field of aviation.


Wayne Sommers

ATP, CFII, MEII, Tailwheel

Wayne and his wife, Claudia, moved to Bonners Ferry from the Coeur d’Alene area in 2001 to be closer to their children and grandchildren.

If you can name an airplane, Wayne has probably flown it.  With over 30,000 hours in the pilot seat as a freight pilot, charter pilot, and flight instructor, Wayne has more than a few good stories to tell.  To put 30,000 hours into perspective, it’s like spending about 3.5 years in the sky.

Wayne came to work at Northern Air in the summer of 2012 as a part-time relief pilot during fire season.  He now flies as our main Tailwheel pilot, and he lends his hand to help fly any machine that needs a qualified pilot.


Nicole Blackmore

CFI, AGI

Nicole’s first time in an aircraft, other than a big commercial airliner, was when she was 13 years old. On a family vacation, her uncle flew her around in a helicopter, and the idea of becoming a pilot first entered her mind. At 16, she experienced the freedom of flight at the EAA Pancake Breakfast. Accompanied by Dave Parker, who talked her through each step she needed to take when in the air, Nicole accomplished something she could only dream of. In those moments she knew she needed to be a pilot. “The experience was something I can’t describe; it’s something you have to feel to understand.”

Since then she went on to win the EAA scholarship and is now enrolled in ground and flight training. When she’s not flying or studying, she’s in the terminal building helping other students achieve their dream of flight too.      


Rick Durden

ATP, CFII, MEI, Tailwheel, Aerobatics

Rick started instructing at Northern Air in 2018. He has type ratings in the Douglas DC-3 and Cessna Citation and over 8,000 hours of flying time in more than 200 different types of aircraft.

When he’s not instructing he is engaged in his practice of aviation law, something he’s been doing for over 40 years, and writing for various aviation magazines including Aviation Consumer, AVweb, AOPA Pilot, Aviation Safety and IFR Refresher.

He is the author of The Thinking Pilot’s Flight Manual or, How to Survive Flying Little Airplanes and Have a Ball Doing It, Vols. 1 & 2. Copies are available at Northern Air.

Bill Lux

CFII, MEII, Tailwheel, A&P, UAS

Bill’s grandfather had a Stinson 108-1 parked in a shed on his farm. Bill spent hours pretending to fly the Stinson but, it wasn’t until he was 34 that Bill had the resources to pursue his dream of flight. While serving in the United States Army, Bill earned ratings after each of his deployments. Now retired from the Army, Bill literally lives on an airport and flies a variety of single and multi-engine aircraft. He views giving flight instruction as an opportunity to talk and fly. What could be better? Bill’s goals include becoming the best flight instructor he can be.


Phillip Heisey

A & P Mechanic with IA

Phil joined Northern Air in August of 2018. His background includes aircraft maintenance as well as flying. Starting his aviation career at Davis College in Toledo, OH, he earned his associates degree in aviation administration, as well as flight instructor ratings while building flight time teaching at the college.

From there, he joined Riley Aviation in Sturgis, MI, flying charter twin Cessna, and working as an apprentice in the maintenance shop. Following nuptials, he moved to South Bend, IN to fly right seat for Patrick Industries in a Saberliner NA-265. 

Phil and his wife left the Midwest and headed to southern Colorado for a mechanics apprenticeship. Phil spent 14 years working for Mountain View Aeromotive in Alamosa, CO growing his love for mechanic life, earning his A&P and his IA license while there. He enjoys working on aircraft and cherishes the time he gets to spend with his wife and two daughters.



Jim Chaney

CFII

Jim started his aviation career in the Marines as an aircraft mechanic/gunner in 1968 aboard the CH-46 Seaknight helicopter. Served two tours in Vietnam during his 5 year enlistment then transferred to the Air Force in 1973. During his tour in the Air Force as an aircraft mechanic he was later promoted to Flight Enginer on the C-130 Hercules then a few years latter to the C-141 Starlifter, spending most of his career at McChord AFB flying strategic worldwide airlift. He ended his career on the Wing Commanders Staff, retiring in 1994. 

Having accumulated over 10,000 hours as a Flight Engineer he came out of retirement (after a year of sailing) to work for American Trans Air aboard the Boeing 727 then latter the Lockheed L-1011 Tristar.

After the attack on 9/11 he was furloughed; out of an occupation and a job all in one day! Since he had a degree in education, decided on becoming a flight instructor because of his love for flying and teaching.

After completing his training at Aurora aviation in Oregon his first job as a professional flight instructor was at the PanAm Flight academy in Deer Valley Arizona, training Chinese Airline Pilots in instrument flying. When that 2 year contract ended he relocated to Tri Cities Washington teaching at Sundance Aviation in Richland until moving to Bonners Ferry in 2020.

Jim has over 4,500 hours in single engine airplanes, much of that time in the Piper Archers and Cessna 172’s flight instructing. His motto is: “if it ever quits being fun, I won’t do it anymore” well that sure hasn’t happened yet!


Cali Iacolucci

Office Manager

Cali grew up in Bonners Ferry and first flew on her 8th birthday. Since then, she has planned her future around aviation. Cali enjoys volunteering at EAA Pancake Breakfasts, and has been a recipient of several of their scholarships. In 2021 she passed her Private Pilot Checkride at the age of 17. She is now an instrument student at Northern Air and will talk about her love for aviation with anyone who will listen.

In addition to flying, Cali enjoys spending time with family and playing casual sports with friends.

Phillip Weaver

A & P Mechanic

Phillip moved to Bonners Ferry in 2020 to pursue his aviation dreams. He enjoys working on aircraft along with flying them every chance he gets. As a young boy he was always enthralled with airplanes and things that fly. He started flying remote control aircraft at around 12 years old and had his first ride in a real plane shortly after. This fully ignited the spark of passion he had for aviation. 

 At the age of 16 he took his first official flight lesson. It was then he knew that this was something he wanted to do someday. Phil finally earned his private pilot certificate in 2019 and since then has added tail wheel, high performance and complex endorsements, along with an instrument rating. 

Phil has worked in the maintenance shop since moving here in 2020 and has since earned his Airframe & Powerplant certificates.

Tristan Thomas

Apprentice Aircraft Mechanic

Andrew Foote

Office Assistant

Andrew has had a dream of flying since he was young, he used to watch planes fly over his house. His grandfather was a pilot, who would take Andrew and his family to airshows when he was young. He started by making planes out of paper towel rolls and landing them on sidewalk chalk runways. He gradually build up to building lego planes, and fly remote control planes and has recently graduated to piloting planes himself. Andrew took ground school here at Northern Air in 2023, and has since passed his private pilot written exam and completed his first solo flight.