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Resources and Stories from Angel Flight West.

Wingspan: Welcome New CO/WY Wing Leaders!

We’re excited to announce new leadership in the Colorado and Wyoming Wings!

It’s my pleasure to introduce Stan VanderWerf as incoming Wing Leader for the Colorado Wing! 

Stan VanderWerf serves District 3 on the Board of County Commissioners for El Paso County and is presently the Chair of the Board. Commissioner VanderWerf also serves as a voting member, and the only elected official, to the Colorado State Board of Health which is responsible for the public health of over 5.6 million Colorado citizens. Commissioner VanderWerf is founder of several small businesses and previously served 28 years in the Air Force. He has 38 years of experience in scientific, program director, engineering, contracting, plant manager, and C-level positions in private industry and public agencies. 

Among his professional achievements, he is an award winner from the Colorado Springs Chamber and El Pomar Foundation. He has a Bronze Star for combat service in Iraq and a Legion of Merit for his military service. He holds national leadership awards from the Defense Contract Management Agency and is a former National Aviation Speed Record Holder from the National Aeronautics Association.

Stan’s hobbies include international expedition mountain climbing, skiing, and flying. He is an airplane owner and has an instrument and commercial rating with over 2,900 hours of pilot in command time and has served as a contract flight test pilot. Stan is married to wife Betsy and has two children, Erik and Carolyn. Stan has been an AFW volunteer since 2012 and has flown over 28 missions. Commissioner VanderWerf took his oath of office for his second term on January 12, 2021

<em>Stan left on a mission flying 8 month old Ridge to his treatment<em>

It’s my pleasure to introduce Serge “Pete” Joskow as our incoming Wyoming Wing Leader. 

“Hello, I am Serge Peter Joskow. I am a self-identified odd-duck.

My addiction to aviation started in May of 1956 as I watched a flight of Polish Air Force Mig-15’s taking part in a military parade over Warsaw, Poland. I wasn’t quite 3 years old, but the image is still vivid. I can still see the trailing white and red smoke overhead.

I was named Sergiusz Piotr at birth, (go ahead try to pronounce Sergiusz). So in 1963, upon arriving in the United States, I began using an American translation of my middle name. Piotr in Polish became Peter in English. All friends and colleagues are still urged to address me as Pete.

My family and I were naturalized in 1968, and my name (at the suggestion of the presiding judge) was “Americanized”, to Serge Peter Joskow. Since then, ‘official’ documents are addressed to Serge, and friends call me Pete. (I find that difference an easy way to identify the source of communications, official or friendly.)

In 1972, I joined the USAF. I re-enlisted in 1976. I served both enlistments as an avionics tech. (Basically: Uncle Sam wanted me to fix airplanes. Only the the officers got to break them.)

While stationed in Southern California, I decided to learn to fly. I earned my Private Pilot Airplane SEL in 1978. Later, as a civilian, I earned my instrument rating in 2001, and my Private Pilot Glider in 2007.

I love to fly. I have always looked for ways to justify the expense of the fuel burn. In 2001, while residing in Maine, I joined an organization named Air Lifeline, an Air Care Alliance member, whose mission was similar to the mission of Angel Flight. I never realized how gratifying using my skills as a pilot to alleviate the burden of another person fighting illness or disability would be.

In 2003, my family relocated to Wyoming. Reliable access to aircraft for missions was poor. I missed public benefit flying more than I thought I would. In 2017 I purchased my own airplane, and in 2018, I joined AFW as a pilot.

Recently, I found myself with a bit more uncommitted time, so I offered to support the organization in any way I could, and here I am.”

Pete and Stan will be taking over the WL controls and help us continue our mission of delivering health and hope in Wyoming and Colorado – and beyond!

Angel Flight West Thanks Outgoing CO/WY Wing Leader Bill Snodgrass

Our heartfelt gratitude to Bill Snodgrass for his support and leadership as he transitions off as Wing Leader for Colorado and Wyoming. Thank you, Bill, for sharing your leadership, talents, and dedication to Angel Flight West! Thank you!

Article by Ivan Martinez

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