Our Founder’s passion for aviation is inspiring many others to
The Future Aviators Mission… Identity Motivate – Direct – Inspire – Mentor Future Aviators In America is a training, scholarship and inspirational aviation agency of Northco Development Incorporated. Future Aviators was founded by Donald Shorter Sr. He is an award winning Commercial Pilot, Flight Instructor and an educational aviation advocate for students, parents and adults, striving for success through education by utilizing the inspiration of aviation and aerospace. He is supported by the efforts of many dedicated volunteers and staff, filled with the passion to help youth to reach their dreams of aviation, engineering and aerospace through S.T.E.M. learning. Don Shorter is a man of vision, hope, motivation and inspiration, and he instills positive encouragement into the lives of those he touches. He is a successful businessman, a professional broadcaster, and the author of “Take Control of Your Thoughts” and “Winning Against All Odds”, as well as several other books. He is an Inspirational / Motivational Speaker, Leader and an Commercial Airplane and Commercial Helicopter Pilot. His desire is to spark the passion for aviation into students at an early age through various events and experiences.
How it all started…
Don’s fascination and passion for aviation began at the age of 7 while, living on military bases with his family. During the summers while playing little league baseball at a local army baseball field located next to the military airport, Gray Airfield – Ft. Lewis, Washington. This military airfield became used to transform his thinking, and for Don, it actually became his field of aviation dreams! It was through the sights and sounds of aircraft landing and taking off constantly near his home and later, the stories regarding the Tuskegee Airmen that he heard about that sparked Don’s passion for becoming a pilot. But, due to family financial setbacks while his family of eight lived on his father’s military income, coupled with growing up with little knowledge of how to become a pilot and while being discouraged by those around him about pursuing dreams of aviation, which constantly told him he would never qualify to become a commercial pilot because of the cost involved, eventually, he gave up his dream of ever flying aircraft. Choosing to pursue a career in television and radio broadcasting instead, Don worked his way up the professional broadcasting ranks quickly starting out at the age of 15 years old, and continuing into his adult life, and finally being positioned to have an opportunity to audition to host become the host of a new television program on the ABC Network affiliate in Seattle, KOMO TV Channel 4. However, in order to land the on air hosting job, he would have to compete with one of the Seattle Seahawks wide receivers, Sam McCullom who was also vying for the television hosting job in order to become the weekly host of the Emmy Award Winning magazine television program called ”Up-Front”. The new program was scheduled to begin with its newly appointed host by the summer of 1980, and would be aired on KOMO TV-Channel 4 in Seattle, Washington. Don won that audition and became the host of “Up-Front”. Still Don’s desire to become a pilot did not go away. All this occurring while simultaneously working as a radio announcer under his broadcasting stage name of J.J. Jackson, on KJR Radio Channel 95 Seattle while hosting his new television program also. It was during this time of broadcasting on the air in radio that Don was invited to take an actual media flight to conduct an radio interview with a team member of the Blue Angels, he was to take a flight in the Blue Angels Jet Plane Number 7. Don remembers taking off on that crystal clear early Northwest August morning from the Whidbey Island Naval Air Station in Washington state. It was during the first week of August, 1977, during Don’s, (J.J.’s), invitation only Blue Angel’s media interview flight which occurred during the Seattle SeaFair festival with Team Commander, Tony Less, that as part of the interview once in the air in Blue Angels Jet #7, the Pilot In Command surprisingly asked Don if he would like to take control of the Jet to demonstrate the jet’s power and maneuverability for the interview. Don quickly replied, “Yes!” So the as controls of the Blue Angels Jet were switched on at the co-pilot’s seat, located directly behind the Pilot In Command’s seat where Don was sitting. Don took control of the fighter jet as he gripped the control stick between his knees, and as he did, he immediately felt the response of the aircraft with the slightest movement of the control stick. Once at 10,000 feet, the Pilot in Command instructed Don to performed a few standard maneuvers with his guidance, including a 360 degree barrel roll to the right! That was it for Don, needless to say, this historic flight experience for him immediately ignited Don’s passion for aviation again, this time like never before, and he heard himself quietly saying under his breath, “I Can Fly!“ Once he was back on the ground, he was so excited and his passion to fly was once again ignited so strong, that he determined that he would learn how to fly both airplanes, and helicopters! That one inspirational experience inspired Don to pursue and receive numerous degrees, licenses and ratings in a number of areas of aviation, ministry and business. Presently Don holds an ATP and also a commercial pilot’s license in both helicopters and multi-engine airplanes and is an instrument rated pilot.
The vision is growing…
The vision of Future Aviators In America is to inspire every student, no matter their status in life, to pursue their dreams very early in life, and to never give up or quit and to continually work toward achieving their God given visions, dreams, or career goals with passions. The lack of encouragement in his early years which caused delays in Don’s and pursuit of his dreams in his own life for aviation, now fuels the entire Future Aviators Flight Team’s determination to help youth growing up like he did, with a passion to succeed, but, lacking the knowledge and finances to fulfill their youthful desire for their own success, in their own future career choices, but, especially in aviation and definitely in flying aircraft. The aviation inspired passion, motivation and desire, Don possesses is the core drive, behind the vision and efforts of the Future Aviators program… all designed to give all deserving young aviators of various ages and backgrounds an opportunity to succeed in aviation in America. Space in every Future Aviators In America event is made available for students that cannot afford the program or event, including camps, flying days, tours or other aviation events. Each event has a apportion of its admission set aside to be given away and is paid for by donors to allow disadvantaged students to receive free admission in the form of event scholarships while supplies last. Today, Dr. Don Shorter speaks to audiences of all ages through assemblies, seminars, camps and conventions across America and around the world, motivating audiences to pursue their God given passion in life. Don also serves as a Part 91 Corporate Captain and Pilot In Command (PIC) on commercial airplane and helicopter flights, for two worldwide nonprofit corporations he is part of, as well as for several businesses he operates. Don, (along with the assistance of his wife Kathy), also volunteer their time as Command Pilot and Mission Assistant for Angel Flights West, flying medical missions to transport patients and medical supplies for those in need of desperate medical care and cancer treatments. Being an experienced professional television and radio broadcaster and on air host for many years on such station as KOMO TV-4 (Seattle ABC Network Affiliate), KJR, KVI and KUBE-93 radio, KCMS, The TBN Television Network and many other stations, allows Don to draw on his broadcasting experience coupled with his ATP, Commercial and military airplane, helicopter and general aviation experiences to communicate a mixture of excellent life stories that has inspired millions, with each story geared toward simple success principles that both youth and adults can easily understand and use to win through many of life’s challenges. Each motivational message is rooted in simple practical steps, surrounded by Don’s passion for aviation. With a transparent down to earth practical approach to success, Don inspires, informs and entertains the hearts and minds of audiences from all backgrounds. Through his inspirational books, his weekly television and radio programs, webcasts and itinerate speaking engagements, he shares his passion of life’s success principles utilizing flying aircraft in a proper balance in his presentations.
Programs of the future making a difference in our nation right now…
Don along with his wife Kathy, own CoachMeToWin.com & Company Care Associates.com – Coaching and Family Counseling services in Bellevue, WA with office in Seattle, Tacoma and Portland. He is also the President of The Shorter’s Investment Company Inc, Don Shorter Aviation, MediaEliteProductions.com, a Commercial Television and Aerial Production Company. Don and Kathy are passionate founders of the nonprofit scholarship agency Northco Development Inc., home for Future Aviators In America an Kids with Big Dreams and the also the founder of Pacific Christian Center. Donald Shorter and his wife Kathy Lynette Shorter have been successfully married for over 40 years. Northco Development Inc. is known for its lifestyle enhancing programs for youth, singles, families. Future Aviators feature several areas of aviation involvement for students including: Aviation Accelerated Learning Camps, Aviation Fly Dreams – Documentary Student Film Projects, Aviation Hands On Tours, and Static Displays. For speaking engagements… Call Media Elite P.R. at (425) 646-2390 Email: MediaElitePR@yahoo.com
It’s finally here…
Hey, become a Future Aviators “Guys or Fly Girls” and get ready to fly early!
Join the upcoming Future Aviators Academy Preparatory Ground Program
No Risk Rusty says… “Hey, I believe I can fly safely!”
Future Aviators operates strictly on private and corporate donations and assistance. Donate Online Today!
Future Aviators In America
11900 N.E. 1st Street Suite 300
Bellevue, WA 98005