Wednesday, July 20, 2011
Thompson chosen to manage Taos Regional Airport
By Matthew van Buren
The Taos (NM) News
John C. Thompson
The town of Taos has named John C. Thompson as the Taos Regional Airport's new manager. Thompson, a town human resources specialist, started his new position July 8.
He has worked for the town's Human Resources Department for more than four years. Thompson will be replacing Mark Fratrick, who was hired as the new administrator of the Village of Taos Ski Valley.
Thompson said he saw the opportunity to pursue his interest in aviation in Taos, and he is excited to begin his new position.
"(The opportunity) presented itself, and I debated it and applied for it," he said.
Thompson's résumé shows he has prior airport experience in Texas, including receiving his Airframe and Power Plant Mechanic Certification from the Federal Aviation Administration in 1988.
"I have always had great interest in aviation," he said. "My whole family has been in aviation since I was born, and it's always been part of my life."
Thompson said his father managed airports in Spearman, Texas, and Perryton, Texas, in the 1960s.
"He was a mechanic, pilot, flight instructor, crop duster, owned his own airplanes and did charter flights out of the Texas Panhandle," he said. "I also have two uncles who were pilots."
Thompson said he started in his first airport job at the Hutchinson County Airport in Texas at age 19. He said he was the equivalent of an airport maintenance specialist, including performing groundskeeping duties and fueling airplanes.
He has also worked for Albuquerque's Robertson Aircraft. Prior to working for the town, Thompson's résumé shows, he worked for Friday Motors, Checker Auto and Cottam Walker.
Thompson said he has kept abreast of developments at the Taos Regional Airport and plans to continue with projects Fratrick had been working on, including an environmental impact statement for the crosswind runway project, the airport master plan and a new airport beacon project.
He said he hopes the airport will be able to build a new runway under his management. As airport manager, Thompson's pay will start at $47,382.
At the Human Resources Department, he made $15.44 an hour, which averaged to $32,115 per year, according to information from the department.
Human Resources Director Loretta Trujillo said Thompson's position will not be filled, as the town is under a "managed hiring freeze" while it tries to eliminate positions through attrition for budgetary reasons.
On the Web: