By Don Desfosse 1035677
#519135 Team,

On February 3, 2013, I was entrusted to lead the VATUSA Division. We’ve come a long way, aligning behind and improving in each of the elements of my initial vision of culture, improved training, retention, growth, presence and balance, yet still have plenty of room for continued growth and improvement in each.

February 3, 2018 will mark my five-year anniversary in the Division Director role. Based primarily on my real-world obligations, particularly work and family commitments, that continue to grow and force me to prioritize, yet also taking into account my desire not to let the Division stagnate and give the Division and its members an opportunity to enjoy new, fresher blood, I have decided to provide a three-month notice of my intent to retire from the Division Director role upon completing my fifth year as Director of one of the best, strongest, most vibrant and fun Divisions in VATSIM.

The good news is that our bench is strong; I feel that there is significant leadership at the Division HQ as well as throughout the Division that can move around and up in order to ensure a healthy transition. I have served significantly longer than any other VATUSA Division Director, which has been excellent in terms of consistency of vision, strategy, leadership and execution, but it also introduces the peril of stagnation and the risk that our rapid-growth and improvement focus and results plateau. It also prevents those with excellent leadership potential from learning to lead at the Division level, and learning to become a truly excellent leader of an organization that currently numbers over 20,000 members.

My hope, by providing the notice that I have, is that a selection and transition plan can be accomplished in an orderly and healthy manner. Nic Felini, VATNA Director, has expressed his appreciation for the ability to have plenty of time to conduct a proper search and transition for a role of such importance to the VATSIM network.

I want to thank you for your faith, trust, loyalty, hard work and support over these last several years. Together, we have created a lot of the magic that I often talk about – let’s keep it going and growing!


By Ira Robinson 1100092
#519136 I know that all of the posts that follow this one will include all of the platitudes deserving of the situation, so I leave that to everyone else. Instead, I will simply say"thank you". Somehow that doesn't sound near enough, yet I know that it is.

Good luck Boss.

Ira Robinson
Deputy Director, VATUSA
[email protected]