11th Annual Archie League Medal of Safety Awards

The ability to think quickly and remain calm under pressure while maintaining a situational awareness are all unique qualities that air traffic controllers possess. Without their willingness to jump right in to resolve complex situations, offer a reassuring voice to those on the frequency and coordinate their efforts with other controllers, this group of dedicated professionals wouldn’t be as successful as they are today at maintaining the safety of the National Airspace System.

While many controllers often feel that they are “just doing their job,” their hard work is often viewed by others as remarkable and extraordinary. Named after the first air traffic controller, the Archie League Medal of Safety Awards program highlights a variety of “saves” – some which involve a team of controllers working together and others which are the result of one controller’s efforts.

Air traffic controllers juggle a variety of variables and complex scenarios. Their ability to adapt to ever-changing situations while keeping their composure is a skill they have mastered. As a result of their commitment to perfection, our system is the safest in the world.

The 2015 Honorees

(Full stories and links to multimedia presentations of each flight assist can be found by clicking on the hyperlinked names below.)

Alaskan Region
Parker Corts, Anchorage Center

Central Region
Travis Arnold, Omaha TRACON

Eastern Region
Joseph Rodewald, Potomac TRACON

Great Lakes Region
Adam Helm, Justin Krenke, and Mike Ostrander, Green Bay Tower and TRACON

New England Region
Kelly Eger and Sarah LaPorte Ostrander, Boston Tower

Northwest Mountain Region
Matt Dippe, Mark Haechler, and Alan Passero, Seattle Center
Southern Region
Sarina Gumbert, Central Florida TRACON

Southwest Region
Hugh McFarland, Houston TRACON
* - Note: McFarland also won the NATCA President's Award, presented at the March 4 awards banquet by NATCA President Paul Rinaldi, as the year's top flight assist.

Western Pacific Region
Jesse Anderson, La Verne Brackett Tower

Media Coverage

KOMO-TV Seattle
KOMO-TV Seattle (pre-CFS story)
KOMO-TV Seattle - awards banquet coverage
KOMO-AM Seattle
KOMO radio Seattle (Feb. 25, 5:30 a.m.)
KOMO radio Seattle (Feb. 25, 7:30 a.m.)
KOMO radio Seattle (Feb. 25, 8 a.m.)
KIRO-TV Seattle
KOMO Radio Seattle - references awards banquet
KTVA-TV Alaska
Alaska Dispatch News
Juneau Empire
Orlando Sentinel
Orlando Sentinel (Editorial page feature)
WKMG-TV Orlando
WKMG-TV Orlando
WFTV-TV Orlando
WFTV-TV Orlando, story after the awards banquet
Central Florida Ch. 27 (Orlando)
Central Florida Ch. 27 (Orlando) coverage after awards banquet
News 13 Orlando
WLUK (Fox 11) Green Bay, Wisc.
Fox 11 Green Bay - coverage after the awards banquet
CBS5 Green Bay
Green Bay Press-Gazette
Lincoln, Neb., Journal Star

The 11th Annual Archie League Medal of Safety Awards Banquet

March 4, 2015
Rio, Las Vegas

Special 28-page book about the honorees and their stories.

Video of the entire awards banquet.

Photos from the banquet.

Video: The winner of the President's Award, Hugh McFarland; the award has honored the very best life-saving flight assists since 2005.

AOPA Air Safety Institute's Flight Assist Commendation Awards

Presented by AOPA Foundation and Air Safety Institute Past President Bruce Landsberg at the March 4 Archie League Medal of Safety Awards banquet.

AOPA.org story

Video of the awards presentation.


To view past winners of the Archie League Medal of Safety Awards, click on the year: 
20142013 •  2012 •  2011 • 2010 • 2009 • 2008 • 2007 • 20062005

For more information please contact Doug Church at dchurch@natcadc.org.

For NATCA members: To nominate a fellow member for the 2016 awards (all 2015 calendar year flight assists are eligible to be nominated), click HERE.