Always smiling and a familiar face at aviation events in Anchorage Jamie Patterson-Simes has earned her place among Alaska’s finest flight instructors by attaining Master Flight Instructor status.
The National Association of Flight Instructors (NAFI) announced on Feb. 12, 2013 that NAFI member Jamie Patterson-Simes has earned accreditation as a NAFI Master Flight Instructor.
Jamie Patterson-Simes soloed in a Cessna 172 through the Civil Air Patrol in Washington State with 10.4 hours as a 17-year-old. Recounting her experience, Simes stated “It was eight days of aviation immersion, with all meals, ground school and flight instruction included until you soloed for $200 total.” Enamored with flying, Simes went on to attend Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Prescott, and after graduation started flight instructing in 1993. At the flight school, pilots would come down from Alaska to train for additional ratings during the winter, and she became enthralled with their stories of adventure.
In 1995 Simes bought a one-way ticket to Anchorage, and soon found a job flight instructing at the largest flight training center in Alaska. Here Simes’ duties involved teaching students, accomplishing mountain checkouts, and completing flight reviews, all of which helped her increase her hours quickly, especially since there was no official nighttime for five weeks during the summer. After flight instructing in Anchorage, she made her way 400 miles west to Bethel, Alaska; now as a Part 135 Pilot flying off remote village strips and specializing in off-airport landings for hunters and guides. After flying in Bethel, Simes returned to Anchorage and worked as a charter and flightseeing pilot flying to Mt. McKinley.
Beginning in 2007, Simes started working at the University of Alaska Anchorage, in the Aviation Department acting as a CFI, adjunct faculty member, and mentor for hundreds of students. In May 2013, she graduated with her MBA. Simes is actively involved in the aviation community, serving on numerous boards and attending meetings related to airport development.
Simes owns a Cessna 150, the same one in which she had flight instructed in 1995. She currently instructs independently, has started her own consulting company, and ferries aircraft from Anchorage to the Lower 48 and Mexico.