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A tale from of treachery...Staring Ken Ricci

Hogprint

If you aint Cav...
Joined
Apr 16, 2002
Posts
695
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A tale of treachery...Staring Ken Ricci

Reprinted with permission from the Original poster...

“I can speak to this first hand. I was with Travel Air back in 2002 when we were merged with Flight Options Inc to form Flight Options LLC.

At the time there was a drive to Unionize RTA but time was running out due to the impending merger. Ken Ricci sent us all a signed letter telling us "No one will lose Seat, Position, or Pay through the merger" in an attempt to assure us we did not need a Union.

During this time I was an Assistant Fleet Manager and Check Airmen in the [Redacted] Fleet. In Feb 02 I went to Indoc and it was reiterated by Ricci in person that no one would lose Seat, Position or Pay. At the end of Indoc the Check Airmen had a very what I would call "Hollow" meeting with Chief Pilot [Redacted]. I went home after that for 7 days preparing for the new 8/7 schedule we would be on.

About my third or fourth day off I received a call from [Redacted] {the Chief Pilot}. He was calling to let me know he had my new seat assignment????? Come again??? Yes new seat assignment, he was calling everyone in turn to reassign them. Ok, I said. I was then informed I could continue in the [Redacted] as an FO. Not Check Airman losing Asst Fleet Mgr, not Captain losing both FMGR and CA. No as an FO losing all three.

Well that's loss of two positions FMGR and CA. It was a loss of seat Captain to FO and a loss of pay about 20k/yr for all three. At that time I was around 85k/yr which was good for Fractionals. So I lost all three just a few short days after Ricci himself signed a letter and made a verbal personal garrantee. I was also offered Captain in the Beechjet fleet or Captain in the King Air fleet we had at the time.

We'll I thought I lost my job that day. I blasted my new Chief Pilot on the phone about their slimy lying B.S.. I told him I dont care so much about seat or position but pay affects my family who I provide for. The discussion was quite heated but then [Redacted] stepped back and said he would see what he could do. Keep in mind its non Union at this point and therefore self negotiated. The next day he called to inform me they were willing to freeze my pay but I had to choose a seat available. I chose the Beechjet Captain seat and picked up two type ratings.

So behind the scene what happened was they re-shuffled the seniority list which took me from around 150 to over 300 out of 1200 total. Pay was now by fleet so senior guys at RTA that were in the King Air jumped to the Hawker compounded by the fact that Ricci made the first 100+ senority numbers FlOps guys even though they didnt have the years on us.

I struggled there for a year while the company fired guys one by one from the former RTA fleet over various reasons some if which ended up in Law Suits. Almost one year to date I left as I felt my number was up and I had an opportunity to fly a GIII for a Pt91 op.

Ricci systematically continued to shrink the company selling assets and misappropriating 77 million in company operating capital that came over from RTA. Pilot numbers went from 1300 to a low of around 350. Now he has acquired Flex and the scenario starts all over.

They CANNOT afford to get rid of the Union!!!!!!!

Sorry so long winded but 16 years later I still have a bitter taste from that experience.”

End of Story

History has a way of repeating itself, especially when the same players are involved...
 
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cougar12

Unite Brothers & Sisters
Joined
Mar 20, 2008
Posts
136
Total Time
9000
Hogprint,
Ther are hundreds of pilots at Flexoptions that wish they would have left when you did. Some of us stayed and fight to make this a great place to work! However, in hindsight the lack of support from our fellow aviators has made any progress really long and contentious. So, here we go again another vote after even more pilots have left. Pretty soon the vote will only be among the chosen few!
 

GlorifiedCabbie

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 20, 2013
Posts
1,220
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15+
The chosen few will be working 24/7 just to pick up the slack for the mass exodus about to happen.
 

Hogprint

If you aint Cav...
Joined
Apr 16, 2002
Posts
695
Total Time
6000
Hogprint,
Ther are hundreds of pilots at Flexoptions that wish they would have left when you did. Some of us stayed and fight to make this a great place to work! However, in hindsight the lack of support from our fellow aviators has made any progress really long and contentious. So, here we go again another vote after even more pilots have left. Pretty soon the vote will only be among the chosen few!

To be clear, this was a reprint from a friend who I fly w at NJA. He was former Traval Air and this is his story. He originally posted this on our internal message board and I asked permission to share because I think it may help a brother on the fence so to speak. I should have been more clear on the original post.

I applaud all who have stayed and fought the good fight. Hang in there. One more battle to march into. I hope all the best for y’all.

As an aside, I applied to TA at the same time as NJA. I thought I’d be a shoe-in there. 2500hrs of Be200 time. They never called? NJA did.

This industry is all about luck and timing...
 
Last edited:

Casa212

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Joined
Apr 21, 2018
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Truck4.pngLook for the IBT 1108 Truck while in Dallas
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