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About Us

Committed to Meeting Your Training Requirements

The Prevailance Aerospace Team is made up of highly experienced aviation professionals from various military and general aviation backgrounds. Our strength is derived from our breadth of aviation experience and our cohesiveness. We work and act as a team, taking full advantage of our unique flight experiences and areas of expertise to provide the customer with an unmatched product. Prevailance Aerospace maintains its reputation for professional excellence by demanding the highest standards from its pilots.

Our Instructors have:

  • Thousands of flight hours in a wide variety of aircraft types and models
  • Multiple aviation combat tours of duty while serving in our military
  • Significant experience in tactical jet aviation including the F-14 Tomcat & the F-18 Super Hornet
  • Graduated from the Navy Fighter Weapons School (TOPGUN), and bring that professionalism to the forefront of their instruction and flying
  • Extensive experience in the dynamic regime of Navy aircraft carrier operations and day/night carrier landings
  • Real world experience managing 'Startle' and 'Surprise'
  • A safety focus that supports everything we do
At Prevailance Aerospace we know that successful aviation endeavors are accomplished through an uncompromising commitment to safety, a solid vision, impeccable professionalism, tremendous attention to detail, and constant improvement. We look forward to bringing our aviation services to you.
 

Aerospace Team



Vanessa Christie
Chief Executive Officer

Vanessa is a US Navy combat veteran who spent the majority of her active duty time flying the F-14 Tomcat...



Mark Burgess
Chief Instructor

Mark is a U.S. Naval Academy graduate and career Naval Officer who flew four tours in F-14 Tomcats…



Chris Thomas
Instructor Pilot

Chris grew up surrounded by aviation… becoming a third-generation pilot with over 18,000 hours...



John Fristashi
Instructor Pilot

John served as a Naval Aviator for over 28-years. During that time he flew the F-14 Tomcat...



Renee Brilhante
Instructor Pilot

Renee grew up in Sequim, Washington where she began flying gliders at 14 years old...

Our training effectiveness is derived from thousands of hours of UPRT/Spin instruction


Vanessa Christie
Chief Executive Officer


Vanessa is a U.S. Navy combat veteran who spent the majority of her active duty time flying and instructing in the F-14 Tomcat. She has more than 2,000 hours in military and general aviation platforms, including the F-14 Tomcat, T-39 Sabreliner, T-2 Buckeye, T-34 Turbo Mentor, Cessna 150, Cessna 172 and now Extra 300 series aircraft. Vanessa is a qualified Forward Air Controller (Airborne) and Night Vision Goggle instructor. She joined Prevailance, Inc. in 2007 and subsequently led the creation and development of Prevailance Aerospace. She was selected as a Hampton Roads' 2012 honored ‘Women in Business', served on the Prevailance, Inc. Board of Directors, was awarded the 2015 Chancellor’s Award for Leadership in Philanthropy, and serves on the TCC Educational Foundation Board.

Mark Burgess
Chief Instructor


Mark is a U.S. Naval Academy graduate and career Naval Officer who flew four tours in F-14 Tomcats. He has extensive combat experience flying in Operations Southern Watch, Enduring Freedom, and Iraqi Freedom. Mark was an instructor pilot in the F-14 A/B/D and T-34C, and also served as the Navy’s lead F-14 Demonstration Pilot for the 2000 and 2001 airshow seasons. After retiring from the Navy in 2010, Mark joined the Warrior Flight Team and became the lead pilot flying the L-39 Albatross in airshows across the United States. Mark also flew the L-39 in contract support to the military for JTAC training, and instructs in the L-39, Cessna 172, and Citabria. Mark is Prevailance Aerospace’s Assistant Chief Instructor and teaches Upset Prevention and Recovery Training in the Extra 330/300.

Chris Thomas
Instructor Pilot


Chris grew up surrounded by aviation, developed a passion for flying at a young age and ultimately became a third-generation pilot. Chris was trained by his Naval Aviator father, and earned his pilot’s license at the age of 17. Chris’ professional career started with the Virginia Beach Fire Department where he was quickly promoted to Master Firefighter. After eight years of service, Chris made a transition in his career and entered the world of professional aviation. He currently serves as a Captain and Line Check Airman for a major commercial airline. While logging more than 18,000 hours of flight time, Chris has towed aerial banners, served as a flight instructor, and worked as a charter and night freight pilot while flying more than 95 different types of planes. Chris is also a member of the GEICO Skytypers Air Show Team and serves as the #2 Pilot/Right Wing.

John Fristachi
Instructor Pilot


John joined the Prevailance Aerospace team in 2017. He previously served as a United States Naval Aviator for over 28-years. During that time he flew the F-14 Tomcat, A-4 Skyhawk, F-5 Tiger, F-16 Falcon and F/A-18 Hornet and Super Hornet, as well as various trainer aircraft and helicopters. He holds Federal Aviation Administration Airline Transport Pilot and Commercial Airplane, Seaplane, and Remote Pilot ratings, and has been a Certified Flight Instructor in Single and Multi-Engine airplanes, as well as an instrument instructor since 1983.

Renee Brilhante
Instructor Pilot


Renee grew up in Sequim, Washington where she began flying gliders at 14 years old and Cessnas at 15. Commissioned in the US Navy through Naval ROTC with an Aviation Management and Flights Operations Major from Jacksonville University in Florida where she earned her Private through CFI certificates. While in college Renee competed in the International Aerobatics Club Competitions, where she began her respect for overcoming Loss of Control Flight. Post college, she served on the USS KAUFFMAN and COMPHBRON EIGHT, leading Naval Planning in missions from Counter Drug Ops to War on Terror and Flight Instructed during her down time. Currently, Renee is an Instructor at Prevailance Aerospace, First Officer for Republic Airline, and President of Chesapeake’s IAC Chapter competing in her S1D Pitts Special.
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