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Russ College welcomes new aviation business administrator

Colleen Carow | Apr 30, 2018

Russ College welcomes new aviation business administrator

Colleen Carow | Apr 30, 2018

The Russ College of Engineering and Technology has welcomed Steven Owens as aviation business administrator in the Department of Aviation. Owens replaces Mark Atkinson, who joined Jacobs, an international technical professional services firm, in April as division vice president for weapon system sustainment.

“In addition to the skills that Mark Atkinson brought, Steve is an expert and professional pilot in both fixed wing and rotary aircraft,” said Russ College Dean Dennis Irwin. “He possesses a unique skillset in both administration and flight, which is a combination the Russ College hasn’t offered before.”

Owens, who holds FAA Commercial Helicopter, FAA Commercial Pilot Multi Engine Land, Fixed Wing, Commercial Pilot, and many other certifications, was a sergeant and helicopter pilot for the West Virginia State Police, where he worked almost 17 years.

A member of the West Virginia Army National Guard since 1992, he has been on active duty since 2007, serving as state command chief warrant officer, and Army aviator and commander; and with deployments to Kosovo, Afghanistan and Africa. He most recently taught courses in homeland security global terrorism, and criminal justice, at Southern New Hampshire University; and courses in emergency management and planning, and public administration, at Upper Iowa University.

Owens praised aviation students for their attitudes, saying he looks forward to collaborating with them daily.

“I have found the energy and enthusiasm of the students to be nothing short of infectious,” Owens said. “They make it easy for me to come to work each and every day.”

Owens earned an M.A. with honors in homeland security at American Military University and a B.A. at West Virginia State University.