About Jetpack America
In May of 2011, John Morris took his daughter Katie Morris to Fort Lauderdale, Florida to fly the Jetlev R200 at the Jetlev Headquarters. What started out as a father/daughter bonding trip soon turned into a business. Both enjoyed the flying experience so much they decided to become a distributor of Jetlev and set up a flight school in Newport Beach. They brought on partners Chis Herman and Ryan Eastman, owners of West Coast Yachts and, within a month, they opened Jetpack America. (formerly known as Jetlev Southwest), as an international distributor of Jetlev, an authorized flight center and training academy.
In September of 2011, Katie Morris recruited her college friend Dean O'Malley to work as the President of Jetpack America. With Dean on board, the business skyrocketed and has been growing steadily ever since, with locations in Honolulu, Hawaii and San Diego, California now open and another location with our own fresh water lake near Vegas set to open in 2014.
With over 10,000 customer flights in the books across the various locations and rave reviews coming from all over the world, the sky's the limit for the Jetpack America team. Come fly with us!!
Meet Our Staff
Dean O'Malley - President of Jetpack America
Like many people out there, I've always been drawn to adventurous activities that allow me to get airborne, whether it's jumping from a plane, snowboarding off a cliff or strapping a jetpack to my back. Through some amazing luck and good timing, I've been given the chance to live my dream of combining my love of flight with my business background. Since Jetpack America is still a very young company, I wear many hats, from Certified Flight Instructor to Social Media Rep to Marketing Manager, but my primary job is to help the world see just how much fun it is to fly a jetpack. My biggest satisfaction comes from the countless happy customers who come to me with positive feedback from their flights and rave reviews of all of our Jetpack America staff members.
Josh Hanson - Newport Beach Flight Center Manager
I live in Costa Mesa CA. Snowboarding and surfing are my two hobbies outside of JETPACKING for my job. My favorite part of the job is when people get excited from the experience, especially if they were nervous in the beginning. Flying during the breaks in the schedule isn't too bad either! Even the office has a front row view of the bay with large glass windows. Not too shabby when you get office duty here! My favorite trick is probably backwards donuts or side/back flips.
Morgan West - San Diego Flight Center Manager
Born and raised in sunny San Diego, I've grown up in and around the water and wouldn’t want to be anywhere else. I have jumped out of airplanes, swam with great white sharks, and traveled the world, but so far nothing compares to the feeling of flying the jetpack. I love to seek adventure and Jetpack America is now my next journey, I couldn’t be more excited to be a part of the family and am very excited to see what is in store for this company. There is a great satisfaction seeing first-time pilot’s start flying and the look on their faces when they get airborne is priceless!
Kate Cullen - Office Rep (Newport Beach)
I am from Pasadena, CA. My favorite sport is tennis, which I love to play and watch. Jetpack America is the best place to work! My favorite part of the job is hearing customers feelings before and after the Jetpack Experience. It is always awesome to listen to customers talk about how much fun they had when they get back to the office. One of the perks of being in the office is that it has a front row view of the bay. Who can complain when you can take a break looking out toward Newport Bay!
James Gibeson - Lead Instructor (Newport Beach)
Hi, I'm one of the instructors here at Jetpack America. I'm originally from Virginia, but have been traveling around searching for the endless summer. Outside of work you can find me working on my veggie powered van and surfing the local waves. If you'd like to come fly a jetpack, I'm your man. I've dreamed of flying my whole life and finally here's an opportunity to fly, hover, and soar in a safe way. My favorite tricks are Donut Turns because you can really feel the g-forces as you're flying horizontal above the water! My second favorite? No handed hovers! Come out and I'll teach you everything I know!
Chris Wilson - Certified Flight Instructor and Equipment Manager (San Diego)
I have been a water sports enthusiast my whole life, and have to give a huge shout out to Mom and Dad for making it all possible. Born and raised in North Carolina it all started with skiing, wakeboarding, sailing, etc. but now I happily add JETPACKING to the resume. The best part of my job is working with an epic team of people to help any and everyone experience the phenomenon that is human flight.
Claude Mokbel - Certified Flight Instructor (Newport Beach)
Hi, the name is Claude Mokbel. I'm 21 years young and a proud member of the Jetpack America team. Born and raised in beautiful Orange County, I spent many summer days hanging out on the beach catching sun rays and splashing in the ocean, so it was only right for me to fall into the hands of this wonderful team. I'm an avid flyer of the Jetlev and have never felt more free than when I am up in the air soaring above the homes on the harbor. This is my first "real job", so I'm forever grateful to have been given the opportunity to prove my abilities, while maintaining my sense of humor and fun in this casual atmosphere. My bosses as well as coworkers are all one of a kind, so if you decide to fly with us you will definitely have a great experience. My favorite part of the work day is that initial smile that springs onto a customers face when they first take flight. If you would like to know more of my story and share some of yours, I would love to listen; book a flight and come have a chat. Thanks for reading! See you in the sky!
Johnnie Cartwright - Instructor Assistant (Newport Beach)
I grew up in Central Oregon and it wasn’t until 3 years ago when I made the infamous move to California. While pursuing my dreams of becoming an actress/model I was asked to do some promotion work for Jetpack America. Somewhere along the way that became a full time position with the company. I was ecstatic! I may look like your typical city girl but I am far from it. I like to spend my extra time at home baking and cooking, sure, but you will probably find me at the beach surfing or swimming or easiest to guess, taking the jetpack out for a spin with the boys. I also love to camp, hike, and do mostly anything outdoors. On top of that I am just keeping myself busy with gigs and events! You can even find me on the latest California Tourism TV commercial flying the jetpack. Cheers guys!
Steve Ramsthaler - Certified Flight Instructor (San Diego)
Steve Ramsthaler 26 year old from NJ. Graduate of SDSU. I love everything action sports. When I am not being a CFI I am a snowboard instructor in big bear. Also film and produce an action sports tv show in big bear called bear action tv. Marketing and team manager for continuous clothing and SWAE watches. Favorite trick high speed doughnut turns.
Trevor Heard - Certified Flight Instructor (Newport Beach)
Growing up in Laguna Niguel about 20 minutes away, I have always been near the ocean and I cannot remember one summer I haven't spent on the water here in sunny Southern California. I thought skydiving was a fun until I flew with
Jetpack America. I love spending my day soaring the Newport skies and
teaching other people how to fly. It's priceless seeing the reaction on people's faces as they try to grasp
the concept when they hear I fly jetpacks for a living.
Coming from a family of art and racing with one side oil painters and chefs, the other racing cars and motorcycles in Singapore, I find my deepest passion lies in cooking and racing cars, learning at a young age many of the classic French cooking techniques and spending my later years racing cars at race tracks near Los Angeles. Aside from that, I enjoy hunting, riding horses, sailing, walking dogs, free diving, snorkeling, spearfishing, bodysurfing, surfing, tennis and traveling.
I encourage everyone to grab their wildest instincts and put them to the test in our Jetpacks. Something this fun shouldn't warrant any second thought, so suit up, strap in and take to the skies!
Tabitha Lipkin - Certified Flight Instructor (San Diego)
Hey There! I'm Tabitha and I am a transplant from Austin, TX. I graduated from the University of Texas with a degree in Broadcast Journalism and after working for a few years as a TV Reporter and Producer in LA, I found my way to sunny San Diego. It is safe to say that I now have the best job in the world as a Flight Instructor and Jetpack Pilot. "What do you do, Tabitha?- Oh, I fly jetpacks for a living". I love meeting new people and I travel as much as I can outside of "work". Like many of my fellow employees, I'm an adrenaline junkie and love pushing the limits. My #1 goal is to make sure you have an amazing time when you decide to become a Jetpack Pilot yourself. Come fly with me! Also, do you like craft beer?- Well I do, and we should grab a pint after your flight.
Jon Statman - Lead Instructor (San Diego)
Hey, I'm Jon! Originally from California, I've lived in Oregon for the last 20 years. I recently returned home, to paradise! Adventure is a must for me! Some of my best memories are climbing waterfalls in Jamaica, zip lining in Mexico, and ice climbing in New Zealand. My biggest passion though is flight! I'm a licensed skydiver, get into the wind tunnels whenever I can, and am fascinated by anything in the aviation industry. So naturally, flying a jetpack is right up my alley! The first time I saw it, I knew it was something I had to try. The first time I did it, I knew it was something I had to keep doing and master (I have a little work to do on that second part...) I'm so fortunate to be able to work at Jetpack America. When I first started here, I was immediately struck by the amazing atmosphere, especially by how much my coworkers really love what they do, and how they spread their enthusiasm to everyone who comes by, whether to fly or just watch. I mean, who can blame them? You can't beat getting out in the sun and water, meeting great people, and flying a jetpack to boot! I love seeing people get the hang of flying, and the huge smiles on their faces that I know are going to last for a lot longer than just their flight time! So come on out and give it a shot, you won't be disappointed! See you out there!
John Stanley - Certified Flight Instructor (Newport Beach)
I am a graduate from Chapman University with a degree in International Business and Spanish. I am originally from the Bay Area and have tons of roots in Southern California. I have also lived in Oregon as well as Spain and I currently live in Newport Beach. From as far back as I can remember I’ve had a liking for sports. I played just about every one of them growing up and continued playing baseball and football in college. I also did my fair share of extreme sports at a young age, like surfing, snowboarding, wakeboarding, cliff jumping, and plenty more, so it’s not by accident that I find myself working for Jetpack America. The best part about my job is, well, everything, because I fly jetpacks for a living. My favorite thing to do on the Jetlev is crash! Sure, doing 360’s, submarines and donut turns are fun, but nothing is more exhilarating than falling from 30 feet in the air!
Alexa Bilek - Instructor Assistant/Office Rep (Newport Beach)
Thanks for taking interest in our "Meet the Staff" page!! Hopefully I'll get to meet you once you come out to fly the World's first Jetpack with us! ;D My name is Alexa Bilek and I am a recent graduate from the University of Colorado where I majored in Environmental Science, emphasis in Climate and Energy, and minored in Business Management. I was actively apart of Boulder Freeride, the ski and snowboard club on campus, so my weekends constantly consisted of cinching down my ski boots and stomping into my double planks in the winter. My California roots never left me though! I still love going out to the ocean or the river where I can get behind a boat and wakeboard, tube, or wakesurf. I also love offroading, scuba diving, hiking, surfing, fishing, and pretty much anything else that has to do with the great outdoors! My dad took me to Jetpack America to come fly the jetpack with him last summer when I was visiting from College, and I absolutely LOVED IT!! I loved it soo much in fact, that when I moved back to California after graduating, I contacted Jetpack America and asked if they had any opening positions. And well, the rest is now history!! Whether you are an adrenaline junkie, like me, or you want to step out of your comfort zone and try something new, we'll help you get up in the air and fly like a superhero here at Jetpack America!