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University of Central Missouri
Administration 302
Warrensburg, MO 64093
Phone: 660-543-4640
Fax: 660-543-4943


Local Pilot, Businessman Monetti Will Lead UCM Aviation Programs, Facilities

Contact Jeff Murphy
WARRENSBURG, MO (July 3, 2012) – Looking for opportunities to strengthen the Max B. Swisher Skyhaven Airport as an education and community aviation resource, the University of Central Missouri has named Tony Monetti, Warrensburg, as the first-ever assistant dean of aviation and executive director of the airport. Members of the campus and local communities will be able to meet Monetti during an introduction ceremony planned for 11 a.m. Tuesday, July 10 at Skyhaven’s Hangar 2.

The announcement of Monetti’s appointment was made today by Charles Ambrose, university president, and Roger Best, dean of the Harmon College of Business and Professional Studies. They invite all interested individuals to attend the airport festivities, which take place prior to Monetti’s official start date of Aug. 1.

Tony Monetti
Tony Monetti

 “Since I arrived at UCM, our goal has been to identify leadership that will successfully blend the academic and community development assets of the airport together to benefit the community economically while also providing effective applied learning opportunities for our students,” said Charles Ambrose, university president. “Tony Monetti is an exceptional choice for this new position. He’s someone who will help the university build strong partnerships through our aviation facilities, faculty, and personnel.”

Best said Monetti brings to the job “great knowledge of the aviation industry, he understands the needs of pilots and has a strong grasp of what it takes to operate a business. He also has a passion for students, and is interested in the local community, which he has demonstrated through his involvement in several successful local projects.” 

After 24 years of service, Monetti is officially retiring in July 2012 as a Lieutenant Colonel in the United States Air Force, having directed operations from 2009-2012 for one of two operational B-2 squadrons at Whiteman Air Force Base. He served most recently as the 394th senior advisor – B-2 instructor and evaluator pilot of the B-2 school house. In 24 years of military service, the well-seasoned pilot and combat veteran logged more than 4,000 military flight hours, including flying a B-52 during the initial strike of Operation Desert Storm and the debut of the B-2 stealth bomber in Operation Allied Force. He was one of the initial WAFB pilots to be selected for the B-2 program in 1994, and his distinguished military career has also included flying the B-1,  T-38, and T-37. He has experience flying the Boeing 757 commercially, and is a part-owner of a small airline.

Well-known in Warrensburg, Monetti is the owner of Monetti’s Pizzeria Ristorante, and is active in the area’s community service through projects that have included leadership for improvements to Lion’s Lake, and founding with his wife, Penny, Big Brothers & Big Sisters of Johnson County.

Best said as assistant dean, Monetti’s duties will consist of bringing together the assets of the Department of Aviation and Max B. Swisher Skyhaven Airport and utilizing them in a manner that provides deeper benefits for and a greater impact on students and the local community.

 He added, “As director of a public use airport and one that houses UCM's flight program, Tony will be responsible for not only maintaining, but enhancing the airport's infrastructure and developing fully its economic potential.  As leader of the university’s aviation program, he will also ensure we have a modern, full-line fleet, create and maintain industry-based partnerships, and provide leadership for program faculty and students.  Tony will bring his vast experience and talents to a great airport and aviation team.”

Monetti, who took his last official flight in the cockpit of a B-2 July 2, said he was eager to begin his new UCM position after retiring from the Air Force. He actually retired from active duty three years ago, but then accepted a call back to service.

“It’s rare in life when you can have an opportunity like this to make such a significant contribution or make a change doing something you love. My passion has always been in aviation and working with people,” Monetti said.

He said his goals will include building a strong academic aviation program, where students will learn to be servant leaders; enhancing customer service at the airport; developing strong relationships with alumni, the aviation industry, and Whiteman Air Force Base; and improving the airport infrastructure to accommodate jet aircraft. This, in turn, will ultimately help further develop a strong revenue stream at Skyhaven, he noted.

 Another goal for Monetti is to continue to build the image of the university’s aviation program to one of Midwest and national prominence.

“I want our students to not only feel pride in their program, but I’m going to help get them future jobs. I’m going to work hard on recruitment and finding opportunities for them to get real jobs in aviation,” he said.

Monetti is a graduate of the United States Air Force Academy, where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in political science. He has a Master of Arts degree in operational art and science from Air War College: Air University; an MA in management from Webster University, and he also attended the Joint Professional Military Education: Joint Forces Staff College.