Reza Karamooz – Chief Executive Officer
Mr. Karamooz is also the Founder and President of the Nevada Business Aviation Association (NVBAA), a 501(c)3 non-profit organization with over 450 members from across Nevada and beyond, working diligently on growing the business of Aviation, UAS, Defense and Aerospace in Nevada. In 2014 he founded the Nevada Chapter of Aerospace States Association (ASA) and manages the Chapter as its Vice Chair. Reza is the current Honorary Commander of the 547th Intelligence Squadron at Nellis Air Force Base, and the former Honorary Commander of 11th Attack Squadron at the Creech Air Force Base. He believes that it is critical to the National Security and economic well-being of our country to be the worldwide dominating force in Aviation, Aerospace and UAS industries.
Reza was born in Stillwater, Oklahoma and started his college career at The Colorado School of Mines and holds an engineering degree from The Penn State University. His industry knowledge spans Aviation, UAS, Defense, Aerospace, IT, Technology, and Energy.
Through GRADD and NVBAA, Reza and his team have started and sponsor aviation, robotics and math clubs at middle schools and high Schools across Nevada.
Marco van Viegen – Pilot – Flight Operations & Mission Planning
Marco van Viegen has spent 23 years in the United States Air Force and is a career aviator with over 7,000 hours of flight time. While in the military, Marco acted as a C-5 Loadmaster, C-130E and KC-10A Flight Engineer, and finally as a Sensor Operator on the MQ-1B.
Marco grew up in Chino Hills, CA and joined the Air Force after high school. He holds a B.S. in Business Administration from Columbia Southern University. Prior to his service to the military, Marco has had a long standing passion in aviation with 30 years of remote control aircraft experience.
Thitiya Karamooz is a Golden Key International Honor Society member awarded by the University of Nevada, Las Vegas in 2008 with 15 years of experience teaching AP Calculus and AP Statistic. She received a Masters Degree in Education (Mathematics Education) from University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) in 2009 and a Masters Degree in Education (Educational Policy & Leadership) from University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) in 2017.
What distinguishes Thitiya from others in her field of expertise is that she treats teaching as a series of fun activities. She believes that; “It’s simple to explain why, but if it isn’t fun and relevant enough, students switch the channel”. Thitiya has a special interest in STEM-based Aviation and Aerospace activities. She believes that on the road to success it’s important to keep trying, and trying. Thitiya received the Clark County School District 2015 Distinguished Educator Award.
Born in Chaiyaphum, Thailand, and now a naturalized American Citizen, she is determined to uncover the secrets of how successful teachers communicate with students.
In 2014 and 2016 the valedictorian from Sunrise Mountain High School were Mrs. Karamooz’s Calculus students. Mrs. Karamooz’s Krypto Math Club from Sunrise Mountain High School won the Southern Nevada 2014, 2015, 2016, and 2017 Competitions and her senior students’ Math Proficiency passing rate was one of the highest in the Clark County School District in 2014 and 2015.
She is the faculty advisor of the newly formed Aviation Club at Sunrise Mountain High School that won the 2014 National Championship in a STEM Competition – GAMA Build-A-Plane / Aviation Design Challenge, and achieved the 2015 National Top Score.
An immigrant-refugee to America from Vietnam. Ben is a Corps Member for Teach For America in the Las Vegas Valley at Sunrise Mountain High School (SMHS). He leads the SMHS Robotics Club, and is part of the GRADD-NVBAA STEM Education team. In addition to his placement as a 11th and 12th grade Physics Instructor, he also leads the after-school Robotics Team, and teaches the 1st ever Robotics Class at Sunrise Mountain High School.
In California, Ben served on the board of local non-profit, organizing bi-lingual community workshops for neighborhood projects, and grant writing for a brand-new neighborhood garden.