By Deb Smith
North American Jet, based at Chicago Executive Airport (formerly Palwaukee Municipal), has elevated its maintenance operation—about 7,000 feet. Ken Ross, founder, says the bold expansion to Aspen, Colo. is grounded in the company’s effort to provide world-class service around the country.
“We’re hoping to create a new destination point for both regional and local jets,” said Ross. “We’re really looking forward to the possibilities of helping stimulate growth.”
In May 2006, Pitkin County, Colorado approved a deal for North American Jet to sublet maintenance operations based at Aspen-Pitkin County Airport (ASE) from Atlantic Aviation. Boosting maintenance capabilities in the exclusive mountain town isn’t all Ross has in mind.
“We anticipate, in the near future, expanding our managed chartered program,” Ross said in a previous interview with Airport Journals. “We have a program put together that we’ve kept relatively quiet concerning the new VLJs.”
To support that program, North American Jet has placed a sizeable order with Eclipse Aviation. Ross indicated they will take delivery of their first Eclipse (serial number 0018) at their Midwest operation in Chicago, during the first quarter of 2007.
“With this, we plan to really open up the potential of private jet transportation to other markets,” he explained. “We’re probably one of the first in the Midwest to do so.”
Ross attributes this to the company’s early partnership with Vern Raburn, Eclipse’s founder.
Now entering its eighth year of business, North American Jet prides itself on delivering world-class aircraft maintenance, sales and management and charter services. Ross believes North American Jet’s standards of professionalism and technology will continue to set them apart from others.
North American Jet boasts some of the most comprehensive repair qualifications in the area and is a certified Part 145 repair station, offering a complete range of maintenance services, from the smallest repairs to airframe alterations.
North American Jet’s maintenance protocol cuts downtime with innovative and convenient mobilized vans that are fully equipped to handle almost any maintenance or repair job.
“We have a fine facility with great employees—people who really care about customer service and going the extra mile,” he said. “We’re a completely wireless company, in the sense of data and sophistication, which helps foster quick turnaround. Considering the size of the company, you’d be amazed at the computer literacy and sophistication of our staff.
Ross said their maintenance technicians carry laptop computers that are able to communicate directly with the dispatch center on behalf of the client, as well as upload information off the aircraft.
“On board, they have the equipment necessary to repair 90 percent of whatever breaks down,” he said.
North American Jet is also a preferred provider for NetJets and Flight Options. Now boasting 62 employees and three facilities—Chicago Executive (PWK), Kenosha Regional (ENW) and Aspen— North American Jet is poised for the future.
While Ross wouldn’t comment specifically on future expansion sites, he did say that many locations across the country have caught his eye, including New Mexico and Arizona.
“We’re always looking to expand in the right area, and a lot of locations have piqued interest,” he said.
For more information, visit www.najet.net or call 877-536-2376.