Meet Tom

I have had the privilege of attending the United States Naval Academy and serving tours with both the Brazilian and Portuguese navies during my summer assignments. Upon graduation I received orders to flight school in Pensacola, Florida where I completed my flight training and received the designation of Naval Aviator. I flew the H-46 tandem rotor helicopter on Caribbean and Mediterranean cruises and attained the designation of Aircraft Commander.

Upon leaving active duty, I served in the U.S. Navy Reserve as an intelligence officer. I was also accepted to the Temple University School of Law, where I earned a Doctor of Jurisprudence degree and passed the Pennsylvania bar exam. Opening my own practice, I focused on real estate law.

Seeking a change in climate and a desire to combine my real estate and aviation knowledge, my wife and I relocated to Pensacola, Florida where I accepted the position of general counsel with an aircraft manufacturing company. Shortly thereafter, an old friend offered me the once in a lifetime opportunity to fly helicopters again, from a covert naval base in the Bahamas. Doesn’t get any better than that!

In 2011 I was offered a position with the U.S. Department of State Air Wing. As a lead pilot for the CH-46E helicopter program, I had the privilege of leading three dozen U.S. Marines flying the Marine Corps-configured version of the aircraft. We deployed on missions throughout Afghanistan in support of the U.S. Embassy and the DEA. It was a surreal feeling for me when I pulled pitch and took off in an H-46 for the first time in 30 years. My final assignment was back in the States as International Aviation Operations Director, responsible for worldwide operations of U.S. Government aviation contracts, including those in Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Afghanistan, Iraq, and numerous other locations around the globe.

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I have maintained my law license continuously since 1988. Upon returning to Florida in 2013, I took and passed both the Florida bar exam and the Florida Board of Bar Examiners' stringent character and fitness review. I am a member in good standing of both The Florida Bar and the Georgia State Bar.

I am an FAA Airline Transport Pilot, holding FAA type ratings in the Sikorsky S-61 and the Boeing BV-107 helicopters. I am also a certified flight instructor and instrument flight instructor, as well as an instrument-rated commercial airplane pilot. I hold an FAA Airframe & Powerplant Mechanic rating.

I established a helicopter world speed record for flight between Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, and West Palm Beach, Florida, USA, as certified by the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale and the National Aeronautic Association. I’ve twice had stories about my flying adventures published in Flying, the most widely read aviation magazine in the world.

I am proficient in Portuguese and hold dual citizenship in the United States and Ireland.