Air Group One Staff


Doug English



A native San Diegan returning to aviation after a long hiatus and joining AG1 in early 2014, he is involved in most of the Wing’s event planning and has served as Safety Officer.

He is also a member of the B-29/B-24 Squadron and tours the country on FIFI, CAF's B-29 Superfortress.

“Coming from a general aviation background” he says, “it is absolutely a dream come true to be involved in preserving aviation history in these WII aircraft.”

I am honored to be working around our professional staff and great volunteers to advance Air Group One and our mission to restore and keep our WWII aviation heritage alive and our aircraft flying safe.



Jim McGarvie



Jim McGarvie was born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area. He graduated from San Francisco State College in 1966 as the Vietnam War was heating up, and married Air Group One Adjutant Jan McGarvie. He joined the Navy and went to Aviation Officer Candidate School in Pensacola, FL.

After receiving his wings he reported to NAS (now MCAS) Miramar for training in the F-8 Crusader.

Following his second Vietnam cruise in F-8s he became an instrument instructor in TA-4s at Miramar before being released from active duty in 1971. He subsequently spent three years flying F-8's and the F-4 Phantom in the reserves.

McGarvie flew for Pacific Southwest Airlines and US Airways before opting for early retirement in 2000. He flew his first warbird in 1971—a Ryan PT-22—and in addition to his own Mooney is currently flying Air Group One’s SNJ-5 "Sassy", a P-51 Mustang and an F4U Corsair.

In 2008, Jim qualified as a Navy Legacy Flight pilot.



Alton "Boots" McCormick



Aircraft Operations, Ride Coordinator

"Boots" McCormick is an experienced commercial and military pilot, as well as a flight instructor. During his 20+ years aviation experience, he has flown fighters, tankers, surveillance aircraft, and helicopters, as well as any warbird he can get his hands on. One of his proudest moments is getting signed of in Air Group One's beautiful SNJ-5, "Sassy". 



Mike Dralle



Aircraft Maintenance & Restoration

Mike has been a member of Air Group one since 2007 and has worked primarily as the PX manager. If you see him at our Airshow or event he will be the guy at our trailer selling merchandise and espousing aviation history to any willing person.

As pilot he has over 600 hours in small aircraft and is an instrument rated private pilot, currently also flying our newest aircraft the Aeronca L-3.

Mike is also an engineer at General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Group which also builds aircraft for the US military.

He is also working on restoring the Stinson L-5 which he and many others in the group hope to fly soon. 



Darrel Cook



I started flying in 1991 when I got my PPL at Golden State Flying Club.  Because I loved flying so much, I wanted to share that joy with others, so I obtained both my CFI and CFII.
Since I have a passion for War Birds, I joined the CAF in 2006 and Air Group One in 2009. To help the public learn more about aircraft history and the contributions made by veteran pilots, I began helping with Wings Over Gillespie and with restoration of the L-5 and maintenance on the SNJ.

I feel fortunate to have been asked to become a sponsor and pilot for the SNJ and L3 and am happily flying to airshows and giving members and the general public flights.

Besides my work with the CAF, I have served as president of Coastal Fliers—a small, nonprofit, pilot-owned flying club.   

Since I never served as a military or commercial pilot, I am honored to fly with such experienced pilots in planes that I truly love.  It just goes to show if you love something enough and are willing to work hard, you can do almost anything!



Debbie English




Bob Finnin




Ricardo Brand



Originally from Venezuela, Ricardo has been always pursuing a career as a pilot since six years old. He graduated in second place in Aeronautical Maintenance at Simon Bolivar University, and has some experience in general aviation and commercial aviation maintenance operations. Working close to small business jets (such as Citation V) to transoceanic commercial jets (such as Airbus 330 series); he has a good glance of both worlds at an entry level. Being extremely passionate about aviation, aerospace and technology fields sometimes means spending his free time flying a DJI Phantom 4 exploring the emerging field of unmanned aircraft control and procedures.


Christopher Van Stelle



Air Operations, Director of Air Show San Diego, Aviation Events, FlyDays! Coordinator, Aviation Business Consultant & Web Design

If there's an aviation event in Southern California, Christopher is typically involved and consults on numerous aviation events each year.

Christopher is currently the Director of the MCAS Miramar Air Show and the Director of the Flying Leatherneck Aviation Museum. He is Vice President of the Southwest Council of Air Shows, a Regional Council of the International Council of Air Shows (ICAS) and was formerly the Executive Director and Air Show Director for Air Show San Diego, and had previously assisted on the: MCAS Miramar Air Show, Hangar 24 Air Fest and Davis Monthan AFB Air Show.

As a Pilot, he's planned and executed numerous aviation events including Commemorative Flyovers for the: Holiday Bowl, San Diego Padres, USS Midway Museum, and Borrego Days Annual Festival, as well as, on-camera performances for a Travel Channel series airing in late 2017. Additionally, Christopher produces FlyDays!, a monthly community outreach event with vintage airplanes, classic cars, live music and great food.

Outside the Aviation industry, Christopher was an Executive in the Financial Services Industry and has sat on the Board of several non-profit Organizations.