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Meet + Greet: Steve Owens, Aviation Business Administrator

Meet the Russ College’s new crop of faculty and staff members this year in this series of interviews, and stop by their offices to greet them in person.
 | May 22, 2018
Steve Owens

Meet + Greet: Steve Owens, Aviation Business Administrator

May 22, 2018

Steve Owens knew from an early age that he’d become a pilot. Now, after more than 35 years of civil and military aviation service, he brings his unique administration and flight skillset to the Department of Aviation.

Where are you from, and what brought you to Athens?

I’m from Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, but I’ve lived near Marietta, Ohio, for the past 10 years while finishing my military career. 

Where did you prepare for your profession, and what was memorable about your experience?

I applied, tested and was accepted for Army flight training immediately following high school graduation. After I finished flight training, I tried to rent a car, and they said I was too young!

Was there a moment or time you knew you’d become a pilot?

I’ve wanted to be a pilot since I was a kid. I failed ninth grade algebra, and the teacher asked me what I wanted to do in life. I told him I wanted to be a pilot. He pointed his finger in my face, and he told me I would never be a pilot without algebra. I didn’t take algebra again for many years, and I’d been an Army aviator for 12 years. I vowed then that I’d never discourage a young person from doing something.

What will you do at the Russ College?

I’ll work as the aviation business administrator, but I’ll also teach aviation and safety-related classes – I love teaching.

What’s your greatest professional accomplishment?

Completing nearly 36 years in the military -- including two-and-a-half years of deployments -- and coming here to give back to our students.

What do you do when you’re not creating for good?

I backpack the Appalachian Trail. I’ve completed 624.8 miles since my daughter and I started going when she was nine – we backpacked 86 miles on our first trip. I also keep bees, do some entry-level blacksmithing, hunt, fish and boat. 

What advice would you give students?

Never pass up an opportunity to learn, and be a reliable person. If you do this, life will provide you with many opportunities. I’m living proof of it.