Ken Blackburn – Leader, Fly-Off Team
Ken currently holds the Guinness World Record for time aloft for paper airplanes. He first set the record in 1983 at 16.89 seconds, then again in 1987 at 17.2 seconds, in 1994 at 18.8 seconds and finally (once and for all!) in 1998 at 27.6 seconds. He is currently an aeronautical engineer with Jacobs Engineering, and has worked for McDonnell Douglas and Boeing. He currently lives in Florida with his wife, two dogs and a horse.
Art Thompson – Lead Engineer, Build Team
Art Thompson is a jack of trades and master of all things aeronautic and impossible. His most impressive achievements include concept development and testing of the B2 Stealth Bomber and numerous other aircraft and acting as the technical director of the Red Bull Stratos Program. He has engineered, designed and built composite parts to support the X programs for NASA and the low orbital programs, he has fabricated and modified tail-cone assemblies for Raytheon Aerospace and developed an energy efficient building material used in over 37 states and 30 foreign countries. Art has fabricated projects, branded vehicles and/or effects for Nike, Pepsi, Pizza Hut, Pelon Hyundai, U-Haul, Skyy Vodka, Volkswagen, Audi and other internationally known companies. Art has designed, machined and fabricated numerous movie props, vehicles and effects for TV and movies like Die Hard With a Vengeance, Total Recall, Contact and Blade.
Aaron Fitzgerald established Airborne Images to deliver exceptional aerial production, helicopter services and photography for clients in Southern California, across the country and around the world. Airborne Images has provided Aaron the perfect opportunity to pursue his passion for flying and photography. Originally from Wenatchee, Washington, Aaron served in the U.S. Army as a paratrooper and artillery specialist in the famed 82nd Airborne Division. The California State Firefighter’s Association awarded Aaron their Medal of Valor in April 2000 for rescuing the crew of a downed news helicopter as it burned on the ground. Aaron and his wife, Melanie, live in Los Angeles. In his spare time, Aaron enjoys playing ice hockey, mountain biking and running.
Owner of GRECO DECOR. Current client projects include CIRQUE DU SOLEIL, DISNEY, NIKE, THE SCREEN ACTORS GUILD, SONY PICTURES, RED BULL. Co creator & owner of the Griffith Park based LOS ANGELES HAUNTED HAYRIDE. Co-owner of the Los Angeles based CLIFFS EDGE restaurant.
MARK BILLIK – Build Team
Mark founded BeCore in 1998. At that time Mark was responsible for creating the first professional in-line skating tour in the United States, Europe, Latin America, and Asia. He is recognized as a leader in Extreme Sports and a sought after promoter for the Action Sports Industry. Mark has worked with IMAX, Nestle, Qualcomm and Sports Illustrated. In 1999, he was named an “Entrepreneur to Watch” in The Sports & Business Journal (July). He has also been featured in Independent Business (March/April 1999) and the Los Angeles Business Journal (August 1998). Mark’s hobbies are surfing, golf and gardening.
KELLY VAUGHT – Build Team
As the CMO of BeCore, Kelly leads a team of forward thinking risk takers to create the most engaging solutions for their brand partners. He has spent his career dedicated to a single-minded focus on helping brands connect with their target consumer. He believes in over delivering on his goals. Kelly is a family man, father of 5 children. He enjoys spending time with family, playing music, surfing and traveling.
Stephen Miles – Build Team
Stephen is an East Coast transplant, who was lured to California by a desire to live in a place where you can surf and ski in the same day. Before coming to BeCore he worked in marketing in the financial, pharmaceutical and technology sectors. During his time at BeCore Stephen has been the Project Manager for Nike Retail Activation project, the Barefoot Wine and Surfrider Foundation trash mural program, and the Columbia Bryant Park Program. His favorite adventure ever was when he traveled to Peru to experience every climate in one month: he surfed the pacific, sand boarded the desert, hiked the Andes, and braved the rainforest.