The Specialized and Proven Aircraft program office (PMA-226) welcomed a new program manager during a ceremony held June 20 in Cherry Point, North Carolina.
Vice Adm. Dean Peters, Commander, Naval Air Systems Command, presided over the change of command where Capt. (sel) Ramiro Flores assumed command of PMA-226 from Capt. Andrew Lynch.
Peters said he credits Lynch’s effective decision making and ability to “empower his people at the lowest level” and said his team “was driven to innovate and make mission-focused decisions in a program essential to the Navy.”
As the Specialized and Proven Aircraft program manager, Lynch led a diverse workforce of team members. When asked about the program office’s achievements during his tenure, Lynch’s response was that of a true leader, “the greatest achievement of the program office is the personal growth of the personnel assigned to PMA-226”. Under his leadership, the program office saw a number of great successes, such as the installation of upgraded ejection seats and glass cockpits in the F-5 aircraft (the latter using other transaction authority) and the use of a Multiple Award Contract for Contracted Air Services, which will allow the Navy to deliver a better product faster. All of these innovative approaches reduced contract cycle time, manpower requirements, and produced a better product for the fleet.
“This program’s achievements are not mine alone,” said Lynch. “Our team is made up of extremely talented people, and all of the credit belongs to them.” It is not just about mission accomplishment; it is about the care with which people treat each other. “It has been my greatest honor to be part of a team that treats each other which such care – care seen not only in the workplace but during hurricanes Matthew and Florence — and part of a team that has truly been the tip of the spear,” said Lynch. He said that he knows the program is in good hands and will continue the mission with urgency.
Lynch said, “The F-5 community is thrilled with the capability the Adversary Team has provided and will provide in the next few years, and the F-16 community at Naval Aviation Warfighting Development Center (NAWDC) will also soon see the Adversary Team’s ability to deliver new capability”. Thanks to PMA-226’s efforts, NAWDC is already enjoying the best strike-fighter readiness that it has had in ten years. During Lynch’s tenure, the Test Pilot School team brought the OH-58C into the Navy inventory and stood up a Fleet Support Team to support it. “These actions will preserve the capability of the Test Pilot School to educate the greatest testers in the world through the 2030s,” Lynch said. The PMA-226 FMS teams “continue to provide tremendous support to venerable aircraft” like the H-2, H-3, T-2, and A-4, said Lynch.
Lynch will retire from the Navy after 27 years of service.
In 2015, Flores was assigned to NAVAIR as the executive officer, deputy program manager for Automated Test Equipment (ATE) and integrated product team lead responsible for development, production and sustainment of Common Aviation Support Equipment, ATE and Test Program Sets for fleet utilization supporting the Aviation Support Equipment program office (PMA-260). He was selected as the Navy’s first F-35 Joint Strike Fighter Maintenance Officer assigned to VFA-101 “Grim Reapers” stationed at Eglin AFB establishing the Navy’s F-35C Training Command Squadron in support of the Fleet introduction of F-35C pilots and trained aircraft maintenance personnel.
His recent tour was as the Deputy Program Manager for Sustainment on the F/A-18 Super Hornet and EA-18G Growler program office (PMA-265).
Flores graduated from Embry-Riddle University in 2002 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Aeronautical Engineering, and in 2010 he received a Master’s of Business Administration from Trident University.
“Our mission at PMA-226 is to provide lifecycle readiness for a diverse portfolio of aircraft, and support our FMS customers”, said Flores. “I am excited to be joining this team made of such great people dedicated to that mission.”
PMA-226 acquires and provides full lifecycle readiness for our many different type/model/series (T/M/S) Specialized and Proven Aircraft, and provides Contracted Air Services in support of the Naval Aviation Enterprise and International Customers.