ROB SPORRER has been flying paragliders since 1995, and teaching since 1998. Rob holds an Advanced Paragliding Rating, Advanced Instructor Rating, Tandem Instructor Rating, and is both a Tandem Administrator and Instructor Administrator. Rob was awarded the United States 2002 Instructor of the Year Award from the United States Hang Gliding & Paragliding Association. Rob is also a certified EMT, and a member of the Sheriff Department's Santa Barbara County Search and Rescue Team. Rob teaches all over the world, and has been coaching The National Paragliding team at the world champions since 2009. He is also the chief instructor for ABLE pilot getting people confined to wheelchairs the ability to fly.
MICHELE McCULLOUGH is a well respected competition pilot, and that girl has got some acro skills as well. Michele has her own school in Northern California, and taught a handful of students up north. She spent here early days flying at Point of the Mountain in Utah. Michele brings her calm peaceful nature to her teaching. We are really lucky that she decided to move so Santa Barbara and share her experience and knowledge with Eagle students. Michele has a gift for teaching and it comes very natural to her. If you look up to see a glider SAT’ing down to the LZ it is likely Michele having some fun.
MARGE VARIANO has been flying with Eagle for almost 10 years. She has been on more tours with us than any other pilot. She loves this sport, and here energy and enthusiasm make her presence an important part of our team. She has been teaching at our training hill, and helping out in the mountains and tours. She is always there to take amazing photos of the students and the team. She has helped our local flying club organize into a very well operated club. Marge doesn’t miss many good flying days, and she is always there to help people in any way she can.
KEVIN HOWE has been working with Eagle since 2006. He has worked extensively with students at the training hill, and joined us as a staff instructor on many of our tours all over the world. Kevin has also played a big role in our SIV training. He has been a tow technician and boat driver up at the lake. He has gleaned a great deal of information with all his time at the clinics, and is a good instructor to talk to about maneuvers and SIV training. Kevin is a very patient teacher, and does an amazing job helping each student achieve their goals. He really understands flying concepts and does an outstanding job in communicating these concepts to all of his students.
BRUCE KIRK Bruce started apprenticing with Eagle Paragliding in 2004, and has taught exclusively in Santa Barbara since that time. He has more days teaching at Elings Park than almost everyone currently instructing. Bruce has wonderful energy, and his enjoyment in teaching a sharing flight with his students is very apparent. Bruce is an Advanced Instructor who has a knack for giving students of all levels exactly what they need in order to succeed. Bruce is also an accomplished paramotor pilot. Bruce doesn’t have a radio handle, but I like “Loose Bruce” or “Captain Kirk”.
ANTONIO CARDENAS is his given name, but we all know and love him as Kabir. He came through Eagle's program, and was a perfect fit to become an instructor. Kabir has experience with the distinguished National Outdoor Leadership School. He has been putting in lots of time as a Basic Paragliding Instructor at Elings Park getting many people up in the air on their first flights. He lives on the ridge line close to the Alternator Launch so be sure to call him for a condition report in the mountains. He enjoys surfing, spending time with his wife Corey, his daughter Talulah and his son Mateo.
TIM BARKER was born to teach. His parents have been teaching all their lives, and he is carrying on the family tradition. We are super lucky to have Tim on board, and he was a natural at connecting with people. We actually learn a great deal by watching Tim work with people. He is a pro. He started flying Hang gliders, but ended up switching over to paragliders, and hasn’t looked back. His family lives in the Owens Valley so he knows that area better than anybody, and I know he appreciates the perspective form above of the area that he grew up enjoying. Tim is a solid pilot, and enjoys many other sports.
LEE KAHN is quite an accomplished pilot and instructor. Lee is a captain for Skywest Airlines, and he flies both paragliders and hang gliders. He has been teaching windsurfing for years, but now prefers to rip it kite surfing. Lee came from a hang gliding background so he picked up on paragliding rather quickly. He has been teaching quite a bit at Elings Park getting students up in the air. Lee always seems to be the last one to land when we are flying in the mountains. How does he do that?
BRAD GUNNUSCIO is based in Salt Lake City, Utah. He is the best all around pilot in the United States. He is the #1 ranked pilot in U.S. Cross Country Competition flying, and is one of the best Acro pilots in the United States. Brad does all the radio coaching at our SIV/Maneuvers Clinics. He has made a name for himself with is maneuvers coaching skills, and the way he takes each individual student through a custom progression which matches their experience. He also travels with us on tours all over the world, and helps out at the training hill, and with tandems when he is in Santa Barbara.