School of Missionary Aviation Technology

Our mission is to equip men and women to serve God in mission aviation.

Board of Directors

Director Profiles

Jack Befus

Engineering Project Manager for GE Aviation. He holds a BS degree from Western Michigan University in Aviation Engineering Technology, and a Masters in Management from Aquinas College in Grand Rapids. His experience has included work as a Flight Test Engineer in Cessna Citations and as a Flight Test/Marketing Pilot for BF Goodrich Avionics Systems. He has 6000 hours of flight time, and holds type ratings in Citation, Learjet, Hawker, Airbus A320 and Boeing 767/757. Currently serving as Chairman.

Robert Damaske

Commercial/Instrument Pilot SEL, Airframe and Power plant Mechanic with FAA Inspection Authorization. Earned an ICAO Class 2 Licensed Aircraft Maintenance Engineer (LAME). Studied at Spring Arbor College 1970 -1972, graduated Letourneau College in Aviation Technology, Graduated New Tribes Bible and Missions Institute. Lived 5 years in Bolivia SA as a child with Missionary parents. Served with New Tribes Mission Aviation in the Philippines and Papua New Guinea working as an aircraft technician. Completed numerous aircraft factory maintenance typed schools, ranging from Cessna High Performance, Lear Jet, Pratt and Whitney PT6 engines to Falcon 2000EX MLG. Managed and owned Fixed Base Operations including a Cessna Single Engine Service Center. Worked as Director of Maintenance for several FAA Part 135 Air Charter operations. Currently employed as a Master Technician, by Duncan Aviation Inc. since 1999. Owner and manager for Hangar 20 Flying Club. Trainer for Brenco IA Training, Presenter on aircraft maintenance and FAA Regulations at the Great Lakes international Aviation Conference and the Ohio Symposium on Aircraft Maintenance. Served on the SMAT Board of Directors since 2009. Currently serving as Vice Chairman.

Peter Eggenberger

SMAT Board of Directors

Jeff Gillesse

Private pilot, single engine land with instrument rating. Jeff is the founder and Managing Member of Level Ten Consulting Group LLC in Ada, Michigan. He has over 36 years of experience in public accounting, executive management, corporate restructuring and turnaround consulting, litigation support, business valuations, and operations management in several industries and as court-appointed receiver. Jeff is a CTP (Certified Turnaround Professional) through the International Turnaround Management Association and is also a registered CPA and earned a B.S. in accounting from Ferris State University. Currently serving as Treasurer.

Mark Kotlarczyk

Currently serving as secretary.

David McCleery

Commercial/Instrument Pilot Single and Multi-Engine Land, Airframe and Power Plant Mechanic. Bachelor’s degree from Northwestern College, Orange City, Iowa, in Business Administration. Missionary Aviation diploma from Moody Bible Institute. Masters candidate from Eastern University in International Development. Currently serves as Regional Director – Latin America and Haiti for Mission Aviation Fellowship (MAF). Has served with MAF for 21 years, 12 of those years in Ecuador as a pilot/mechanic and 3 years as Ecuador Program Manager.

Michael McDonald

Multi Engine, Single Engine Land, Instrument. Bachelors in Business, MSU. President, McMahon & McDonald 1985-95, Sr. Vice President, Acosta Sales & Marketing 1995-01, Vice President Sales & Marketing, Old Orchard Brands 1995 – 2007. E.V.P./C.F.O. Wolff Group L.L.C. Sales and Marketing 2007 – Current. SMAT Board of Directors.

Ron Reitsma

A&P certificated with Inspection Authorization. Commercial, multi-engine, instrument pilot. AS degree in Business Administration from U of I Alabama 1963. USAF Vet/Pilot 1957-1963. Licensed Master Electrician, Owner /President Reitsma Electric, Inc. Aero club maintenance and operation.

Marvin Tyler

Private Pilot, Single Engine Land, Multi Engine Land, Instrument. Bachelors in Electrical Engineering, Tri State University. Masters in Occupational Education, Ferris State University. Aerospace Engineer, Collins Radio Co., Design Engineer, Heath Co., Instructor (retired) in Electronics, Math, Computers and Drafting, Grand Rapids Community College. One of the original members of the SMAT Board of Directors.

SMAT is nationally accredited by ACCET

ACCET Accredited