The Reno Air Racing Association (RARA) is a 501(c)3 organization and produces the STIHL National Championship Air Races every September just north of Reno. An institution for northern Nevada and aviation enthusiasts from around the world, this even features seven racing classes, a large display of static aircraft and several military and civilian flight demonstrations.

The Board of Directors, a small year-round staff and more than 1200 volunteers make up the dedicated team which works to preserve this unique event. This group handles the thousands of details needed year-after-year, beginning planning for the next event before the current one is completed.

Board Members

Fred Telling

Fred Telling

Chairman/Chief Executive Officer

Dr. Telling has served as Chairman of the RARA board since October 2017, CEO of RARA since March 2018, and has been the President of the T-6 Racing Association for the past 12 years. Dr. Telling is also the Chairman of Oragenics in Tampa, Florida. Prior to retiring from Pfizer after 30 years in June 2007, Fred was elected a Corporate Vice President of Pfizer Inc. and its Vice President of Corporate Strategic Planning and Policy in October 1994.

Dr. Telling is a member of the EAA Warbirds of America Board and is an emeritus member of the Boards of several organizations with which he remains involved – the Smithsonian National Air & Space Museum, United Hospital Fund, EAA, ORBIS and the National March of Dimes Foundation. Fred is a member of The Metropolitan Club of Washington, DC.

Dr. Telling received his BA from Hamilton College and his Master’s of Industrial and Labor Relations and Ph. D. in Economics and Public Policy from Cornell University.

Dr. Telling resides in Daytona Beach, Florida with his wife Barbara. He is type rated in Citation jets and the DC-3, fixed wing (Commercial) and rotorcraft (Private) rated, and has a collection of North American Aviation aircraft – “Lady B” a P-51D, “Almost Perfect” a stock T-6G and “Baby Boomer” a T-6 racer.

Terry Matter

Terry Matter

Vice Chair

Terry Matter, prior RARA Director of Operations, began attending the STIHL National Championship Air Races in 1969 as a spectator before becoming a pylon judge in 1999. Terry joined the RARA Board of Directors in 2004, where he served as the Chairman in 2010 and 2011. Terry is a licensed commercial pilot and flight instructor with 57 years of flying experience and owns a vintage Cessna 182 aircraft based at the Reno-Stead Airport. Terry retired from the Northrop Grumman Corporation in 1998, after a 30-year career in Product Support Services and International Program Management.

Joey Scolari Headshot

Joey Scolari

Secretary

Joey is an accomplished pilot of both propeller and jet-powered planes. He has been a RARA Board member since 1993 and is the Secretary of the Board of Directors. Joey served as Chairman of the board in 2002 and 2003 and was named RARA’s “Man of the Year” in 2006.

Mark Bailey

Treasurer

Mark Bailey was a RARA board member from 1994-2016 and re-joined in January of 2019.  He previously held a multi-engine, instrument rating and has been a long-time supporter of the STIHL National Championship Air Races.

Currently, Mark is a Certified Public Accountant, and the managing shareholder of Excelsis Accounting Group in Reno, Nevada. Since moving to Nevada in 1984 from the Central Coast of California he has been active in the community, also serving on several Boards, including the Make-A-Wish Foundation and the Reno Philharmonic.  Mark graduated from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo after serving as an infantry officer in Vietnam. Mark enjoys hunting, fishing and hiking along with an occasional very bad game of golf.

Todd Donahue

Director

Todd Donahue joined the RARA board in January of 2019 and brings an expertise in accident prevention. He grew up in Cheshire Connecticut before moving to Worcester, Massachusetts to attend Assumption College. He graduated in 1991 with a Bachelor’s of Science in Politics. Todd has been a long-time fan and supporter of the STIHL National Championship Air Races. He began flying in 1993 and within a year became a CFII in Helicopters where he worked as an instructor and a charter pilot. In 1995 Todd was nominated as an accident prevention counselor with the Bradley FDSO.

Todd moved to Missoula, Montana in 1996 where he started Homestead Helicopters, Inc. (HHI), a FAR Part 135 and 133 On-Demand Charter company. HHI started as a charter \ scenic tour company but quickly evolved into a USFS contracted Wildland Firefighting Company operating several helicopters and airplanes. HHI was also the first company in the US to become a FAA approved part 141 flight training academy offering Helicopter Firefighting, Mountain Flying Course, and Vertical reference training. HHI has gone over 22 years without any accidents or incidents. Todd currently is the President, Director of Operations, Check Airmen, and Chief Instructor at Homestead Helicopters.

Sue Gardner

Director

Gardner served as the FAA’s National Aviation Events Specialist from 2000 to 2005, and again from 2014 to her retirement in 2018. Over the years, she has worked diligently to improve the FAA’s overall role in aviation events.
During her time as events specialist, Gardner spearheaded many initiatives to improve the FAA’s management of aviation events, including standardizing and updating the policy to accredit the Reno Air Racing Association and the Red Bull Air Races, as well as coordinating environmental policy pertaining to aerobatic practice areas.

On the heels of the 56th annual STIHL National Championship Air Races the Reno Air Racing Association added Sue Gardner, the 2019 Chairman’s Award winner, to their board of directors.  

Fay Gregory

Director

Fay Gregory joined the Reno Air Racing Association Board of Directors in 2017 and served as volunteer coordinator from 2017 to 2018. A fan of The STIHL National Championship Air Races since the late 1970s, Fay worked as Crew Chief and sponsor for T-6 racer “Bare Essentials” in 2012 and 2013.  Fay was also on the crew and sponsor for T-6 racer “Miss Fay” in 2014 and 2015. Fay has been a member and volunteer with the Experimental Aircraft Association/AirVenture since 1980. She is a member of the National Technical Committee – Aviation Maintenance Technology – SKILLS USA and served as its Chairman from 1986-1996. Fay also served as Airport Manager for Camdenton Memorial Airport, in Camdenton, Missouri. Fay is a current board member for the Lone Star Flight Museum and a former board member of Warbirds of America.

Tony Longoteta

Tony Logoteta

Director/Chief Operating Officer

Tony Logoteta is the current Chief Operating Officer of RARA and also a member of its Board of Directors. Tony grew up in northern California but has spent most of his adult life in Reno. After graduating from the University of Nevada, Reno’s Reynolds School of Journalism he moved away for some years, but always considered Reno home and eventually was able to move back. While not a pilot, he has always loved flying and enjoyed the event as a fan, and has always appreciated the great benefits the Air Races bring to the community he loves. A former small business owner, Tony brings an entrepreneurial spirit to the event and a passion for this community. In his off time, Tony enjoys spending time with his wife and four children.

Tony Marini

Tony Marini

Director

Former Hot August Nights executive director, Tony Marini, is lending his expertise to another major Reno event – the STIHL National Championship Air Races. The Reno Air Racing Association announced today that Marini has joined its board of directors. For the last several years Marini has served as director of casino operations for Eldorado Hotel and Casino. With deep Nevada roots, Marini is passionate about his community.

Mary Beth

Mary Beth Sewald

Director

Mary Beth Sewald is a single engine-rated pilot and prior Vice Chair of the RARA Board of Directors and served four years on the Air Race Foundation Board. She is currently CEO of the Las Vegas Metro Chamber of Commerce, serves on the boards of the Nevada Military Support Alliance, The Las Vegas Convention and Visitor’s Authority, the Southern Nevada Sporting Events Committee and City National Bank Advisory Board.

Bobbi Thompson

Bobbi Thompson

Director

Bobbi Thompson’s aviation career has spanned more than 40 years and is RARA’s current VP of Strategic Planning and a member of the Board of Directors. She is a 4,500-hour pilot (single and multi-engine and helicopters), Aviation FAI World Record Holder, has over 35 years of experience producing air shows, has been the airport manager for seven airports, FBO owner and manager, air racer and aviation consultant for more than 1,400 airports/FBOs. Bobbi is also the COO of ABS Aviation and the Minden Airport Manager. She also serves as a Board member and Chair for Nevada Department of Transportation’s (NDOT) Statewide Transportation Technical Advisory Committee (STTAC), past president of the Board of Directors for the Carson Valley Chamber of Commerce, past president of the Nevada Airports Association and served as their state lobbyist. She has also has served on the Carson Valley Visitors Authority Board and currently serves as president of the Business Council of Douglas County.

Volunteer Department Heads

A 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, the Reno Air Racing Association operates with a limited year-round paid staff and some part time contract personnel. The annual event depends primarily on more than 1,200 dedicated volunteers to handle the duties necessary to put on an event of this size. Those volunteers are managed by an incredibly talented and committed group of leaders who are vital to the success of the National Championship Air Races.

Owen Ashurst

Performer Air Boss

Robbie Burgess

Chief Starter

Jim Cassidy

Ramp Tow Chief

Sam Coleman

Chief Timer

Debbie Giese

Chief Scorer

Tony “Bear” Grady

Director of Flight Operations

Chris Johnson - Director of Operations

Chris Johnson

Director of Operations

Robert Johnson - Directory of Logistics

Robert Johnson

Director of Logistics

Jerry Limoge

Contest Committee Chief

Charlie Marks

Charlie Marks

NAHI Director

Terry Marshall

Military Coordinator

Bo Masuyama

Director of Safety

John Melarkey

Chief Pylon Judge

Duane Meyer

Director of Security

Andy Monroe

Media Director

Bill Reeder

Bill Reeder

IT Director

Tim Spencer

Chief of Emergency Services

Dan York

Dan York

Race Control Supervisor

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