Growing up near Cocoa Beach, Fla., and NASA, Steve Gould wanted to enter the aerospace industry.
A brush with college calculus, however, changed those plans. Gould transferred to the airport management curriculum at Florida Institute of Technology in Melbourne, Fla.
His bachelor’s degree and initial certification from the American Association of Airport Executives, were factors in Gould’s selection to replace Eric Ramsdell as administrator for the Rock Hill/York County Airport. Ramsdell recently retired from the city after seven years and more than 30 years overall in aviation.
Gould, 30, was hired from a pool of 60 applicants, said Kevin Bronson, the city’s general service administrator. His first day of work was Monday.
Bronson said the city’s search committee was impressed with Gould’s overall knowledge of airport operations. He has worked for the past two years as director of operations for Collin County Regional Airport in McKinney, Texas, outside Dallas. Before that, Gould worked at the Sikorsky Memorial Airport in Bridgeport, Conn.
The committee said Gould’s work in keeping communities around the McKinney airport informed was a factor. Residents who live near Rock Hill airport in the past have complained they were not informed of changes at the field.
Ramsdell, who served on the search committee, said they were impressed with Gould’s academic training. He is the first administrator at the airport to have a bachelor’s degree in airport management, Ramsdell said.
Gould said his first tasks will be to meet with city and county officials to understand their goals for the airport and to study the airport’s master plan. He said it’s time for five-year review of the plan. Last year, the airport’s runways were resurfaced. Work on taxiways and the parking apron is scheduled for this year.
Gould said he applied for the Rock Hill job to be closer to his family and his wife’s family and because of the professional challenge. When the committee asked where he intended to be five or 10 years from now Gould said he responded, “Rock Hill.”
Don Worthington • 803-329-4066