Meet the Foundation Aviation Team Gary Geis and Jim Eliason

James (Jim) Eliason – Chief Pilot

James (Jim) Eliason inherited his love of aviation from his father, a part-time flight instructor. Before he was old enough to learn to fly himself, Jim built model aircraft and even assembled a small radio so he could listen to transmissions from flight crews passing overhead. Every chance he had to fly with his dad was a treasured experience.

After earning his flying license in 1982 Jim has spent much of his time in the air. He began his career following in his dad’s footsteps as a flight instructor, gradually working his way up to multi-engine and jet aircraft, seaplanes, and gliders. Along the way he also became a commercial helicopter pilot, spending time in nearly a dozen helicopters. 

In November 2022, Jim joined Foundation Aviation with more than 40 years of experience in the aviation industry, including in Parts 91, 91K, 35, and 121 operations. He has worked as a flight engineer aboard Boeing 727s and has also flown the Beech-18, the amphibious Turbine Beaver, the Learjet 23 and 24, and even a World War II era B-17G Flying Fortress. Jim’s career has often taken him overseas, where he enjoys the added challenges of flying on other continents. 

Jim has known and worked with Foundation Aviation owner Tim Lomakin for nearly a decade. Clients can rely on his many years of experience and deep understanding of aircraft operations to provide an unparalleled level of comfort and safety on every flight.

Gary Geis, Director of Maintenance

Gary Geis joined Foundation Aviation in December of 2022 after an already impressive career. He has worked with the owner of Foundation Aviation, Tim Lomakin, for over 12 years at multiple companies across the United States.   

He was inspired to enter the aviation industry by his father, who was a pilot. Gary has more than 50 years of experience as an airframe and powerplant licensed technician. His attention to detail and thoroughness make him a valued part of the Foundation Aviation team. 

Prior to joining Foundation Aviation, Gary served for over 30 years as director of maintenance and manager of quality assurance for several charter flight companies in Southern California and beyond.

Gary appreciates the challenges that come with upholding the uncompromising maintenance standards of the charter flight industry. He draws upon his deep technical background to find timely solutions and provide clients with the safest, most comfortable experience possible.

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