Tom Peghiny, president and founder of Flight Design USA (www.flightdesignusa.com), has enjoyed a front-row seat to some of the biggest developments in modern general aviation. As the U.S. distributor of the mega-selling and insanely popular CT series of German-manufactured, all-composite light-sport aircraft, Peghiny has watched an industry he helped create transform itself into the brightest spot in GA. More than hyperbole, such grand statements paint the picture of one of the most successful light-sport companies on the planet. And the company’s “secret sauce” has always been innovation.
A large dose of that innovation has come from Peghiny himself. “I watched hang gliders turn into ultralights,” says the unassuming Peghiny from his hotel room in Germany, where he’s busy flight-testing the company’s latest project. “Then I watched ultralights turn into light-sport and light-sport turn into general aviation; I’ve been very fortunate.” That fortune was propelled by his intense passion for all things aviation.