Crew Scheduler’s Photography Catches the Attention of National Geographic

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“Pray for the Bees” was taken by GoJet’s own Nicholas Huber, and was featured on National Geographic’s website.

When he’s not on the job, GoJet Crew Scheduler Nicholas Huber is perfecting his photography skills.  “I picked it up as a hobby about a year and a half ago,” he explains. “I’m saving money to upgrade my equipment, but I got a digital camera and a couple of lenses to start with.”  Although he’s a relative newbie to the photography world, Nick’s work has already made waves among fellow enthusiasts, and has even been shared on National Geographic’s website.

So far on his photography journey, Nick has most enjoyed capturing nature photos, and it was a nature shot of a friend’s beehive that caught the attention of National Geographic. After showing the image to friends and receiving positive feedback, he decided to submit it to National Geographic’s YourShot program, which gives amateur and professional photographers alike the opportunity to share their photographs with National Geographic editors.  The best images are chosen to appear on National Geographic’s website and in National Geographic magazine.  To Nick’s astonishment, his photo was selected as one of National Geographic’s “Daily Dozen,” a daily showcase of the editors’ 12 favorite YourShot submissions.

“When they reached out to me and told me that my photo was selected, I was pretty amazed,” Nick recalled.  “It was the first time I’d ever submitted any of my work into a contest of any kind!”

Regarding Nick’s photo, National Geographic editor Matt Williams commented,

“Such an interesting frame, and I love the idea of you photographing this scene from the back. A great and creative idea when it comes to photographing a beekeeper and a bee hive. The light is excellent and I love how it reflects off of the beekeeper headgear and the honeycombs.”

In the future, Nick plans to put his employee travel benefits to good use so that he can photograph more unique and interesting places.  “I’m planning backpacking trips with friends to help familiarize me with more nature shots,” he remarked, “and I really want to photograph up and down the Washington and Oregon coastlines.”

Our Favorite Blog Posts of 2016 Revisited

With the year winding down, we thought that it would be the perfect time to put together a compilation of some of our favorite blog posts of 2016.  Here’s a sample of what our employees have been up to this year.

Piano Playing PIlot Delights Passengers at Chicago O’Hare

Captain Billy Hock isn’t just a talented pilot.  He’s also a musician and songwriter who spends layovers at O’hare playing the piano for passengers.

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GoJet Captain Billy Hock, meeting a fan after playing the piano at Chicago O’Hare

Pilot Recruiter James Douvier Explains What it Takes to Be a GoJet Pilot

In one of our most viewed posts of the year, pilot recruiter Captain James Douvier explains that there’s more to being a GoJet pilot than just being a great aviator.  James is looking for pilots who are going to come to GoJet and make a difference.

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Pilot Recruiter Captain James Douvier

Maintenance Control: The Unseen Face of Tech Ops

The majority of our passengers have most likely never heard the term “Maintenance Control.”  However, the safety and timeliness of our flights depends on this important group of GoJet employees.  This department is critical to keeping our airplanes safe, our flights on schedule, and our passengers happy.

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Maintenance Controller Steven Perez

Summer Interns Contribute to the Operation in Big Ways

During the summer of 2016, three talented young interns contributed to the operation in big ways.  Aviation students Morgan Hunlen, Jade Lubinski, and Alex Dupre all took full advantage of the opportunity to move their studies beyond the classroom, and had an abundance of new knowledge when they returned to school in the fall.

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Our summer interns getting a rare, behind-the-scenes tour of the control tower at Lambert-St. Louis International Airport.

GoJet Flight Attendant Wins First Runner Up in the Miss North Carolina Pageant

Our employees do some truly astounding things in their free time.  Take GoJet flight attendant Juanette Roache – when she’s not providing stellar customer service at 37,000 feet, she regularly volunteers at her local soup kitchen and homeless shelter, as well as mentors children through the Boys and Girls Club.  Her community service led to an opportunity this spring to compete in the 20160 Mrs. North Carolina pageant, where she was named the first runner up and received the People’s Choice Award.

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GoJet Flight Attendant Juannette Roache

We have no doubt that our employees will continue to impress us next year.  We can’t wait to see what 2017 brings.  Happy New Year!

Employee Appreciation Week Recap

Employee Appreciation Week is one of our favorite weeks of the year!  This week-long event, packed with food, games, and prizes, is our way of saying thank you to our employees for all of their hard work  This year’s festivities wrapped up last Friday, and everyone is still talking about all of the fun they had.

One of the best things about Employee Appreciation Week is the food!  In Chicago, Base Manager Tracy Ryan kept the crew room stocked with candy and other goodies throughout the week.  Her queso dip with chips and salsa was a huge hit!  Tracy also delivered Subway sandwiches planeside to crews with fast turns.

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The Raleigh-Durham base had a similar agenda, offering a smorgasbord of treats each day. All kinds of candy bars were available on Monday, while Tuesday featured “grab and go” breakfasts for the crew members.  Throughout the week, crews also feasted on nachos, cupcakes and pizza.

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At the St. Louis base, Base Manager Nikki Lutz worked hard keeping the crews fed all week, and even held a barbecue right on the ramp!

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In addition to the food and festivities, each crew base gave away a FitBit!

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  Flight Attendant Alyce Atkinson won the FitBit given away at our ORD crew base.

At the St. Louis headquarters on Tuesday, corporate leaders threw a “come as you are” breakfast (which was pajamas for many) for all employees, complete with a caricature booth and balloon artist.  The leadership team manned griddles and hotplates, and served up an impressive spread that included sausage, eggs, pancakes, and even a smoothie bar.  And of course, President Rick Leach and GoJet COO Terry Basham held their annual competition to see whose pancakes were the most popular  (we ran out of both, so we’re called it a tie!).

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Other events throughout the week included the very popular “Take Your Dog To Work Day,” a gourmet cupcake truck, and a friendly game of Family Feud that pitted GoJet employees against employees of our sister carrier, Trans States Airlines.

One of the biggest events of the week was the annual washers tournament.  This year was the tournament’s biggest year yet, with 35 teams participating.  Our Maintenance department has established a washers dynasty over the years, and many teams from other departments were eager to de-throne them. However, Maintenance remained dominant again this year, and we again had a Maintenance vs. Maintenance championship game!

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Maintenance remained dominant later in the week, winning the annual tug-of-war showdown between the Maintenance hangar and corporate office employees.

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The Maintenance Hangar defeats the corporate office employees in tug-of-war….again!

On Friday, employees enjoyed a barbecue,

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a mini-classic car show,

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and an afternoon of “knockerball.”

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One thing’s for certain – we’re already looking forward to next year!

Piano Playing GoJet Pilot Delights Passengers at Chicago O’Hare

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GoJet Captain Billy Hock, meeting a fan after playing the piano at Chicago O’Hare

The next time you find yourself at Chicago O’Hare, make sure to wander past Gate C17. If you’re lucky, you just might catch GoJet Captain Billy Hock serenading passengers with his piano playing skills.  Captain Hock is a regular feature at C17, where he often unwinds between flights by performing on the piano.

Captain Hock is a lifelong music enthusiast and has been playing the piano since he was a child.  While he envisions a lifelong aviation career for himself, he always makes time for his first love – music.  “I always plan on flying planes professionally, but music is my first passion,” he explains.

A piano playing pilot isn’t something that you see every day, and passengers have been known to share photos and videos of his playing via social media.  Passengers have also reached out to him directly to tell him how much they enjoyed and appreciated his playing.  One post to his Facebook wall says:

Thank you for the Chopin, it was heavenly and made my delay in ORD worth it. Would have loved to dance to it if I was alone. Keep sharing the beauty you see and feel. 

When he’s not flying airplanes or entertaining passengers on the piano, Captain Hock composes and performs his own original piano compositions, which are available on iTunes.  And his musical talents don’t stop at the piano – he also plays saxophone and guitar!

We’re proud that the multi-talented Captain Hock is part of the GoJet family.  We love it when our employees use their creativity to make unique connections with the world around them!

Delta Million Miler Impressed by Two Flight Attendants’ Creative Service

Flight Attendants Ashley Adams and Rachel Higgins put a creative spin on their inflight service that even a Delta Million Miler had never encountered.

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GoJet Flight Attendants Ashley Adams [left] and Rachel Higgins [right].
I am a Million Miler and someone who has flown Delta since the mid-1970s. I’ve done almost 1.75 million miles, and have seen good service during that time. I am writing today to acknowledge the performance of two Delta Connection flight attendants who went above the job requirements this past week.

I was traveling on a flight from Norfolk to Detroit and was bumped up to first class. At the end of the flight, each of us in the front of the plane were handed paper napkins with a personal handwritten thank you from the two flight attendants who were named Ashley and Rachel. I thought that was a nice touch and one that I had never experienced before.

Our flight attendants are constantly looking for ways to improve the passenger experience. If you have a passion for customer service, click here to learn more about becoming a GoJet flight attendant!