FILLING A VOID, GAINING A FOLLOWING
As a medical instructor and active personnel with the New York City Police Department (NYPD), Flying Aces founder and CEO Andrew (Andy) Bershad realized his skills and expertise were increasingly needed to fill voids in other NYPD divisions, additional law enforcement agencies as well as local, state and federal emergency services. Andy, highly regarded for his expert knowledge and experience, elevated the medical training standards of the NYPD and was continuously in high-demand for his exceptional instructing skills. While continuing to work for the NYPD as a member of the elite Emergency Services Unit, responding to high profile emergency incidents throughout New York City, Andy expanded from training medical and law enforcement professionals to providing first-class instruction in emergency services for corporations and educational facilities across New York State and around the country. As Andy’s brand continued to grow, he began giving keynote presentations at corporate events and industry conferences, increasing his following and further expanding his reach across the globe.
STARTING A COMPANY, CHOOSING A PARTNER
As the requests for Andy’s services grew, he decided to turn what was once a side project into a full fledged company. Shortly thereafter, Flying Aces Enterprises and Consulting was born. Inspired by and named in honor of the brave military aviators of both World Wars (and perhaps everyone’s favorite beagle in a red scarf battling the Red Baron), Andy set out to make Flying Aces a success. During this time of growth, Andy turned to his colleague Dennis Canale, a Physician Assistant who, when active with the NYPD, had renovated and expanded the Specialized Training School and Emergency Medical School of the NYPD Emergency Service Unit, to partner with him and help build the company. With Dennis’ experience in medical training and large scale rescue operations, they started a partnership based on respect and friendship. Assessing the needs of their clients and community, Andy and Dennis discovered that there was a high demand for organizational and facility consulting, executive and staff level training, and product and emergency equipment assessment and delivery to be offered all in one service.
This meant it was time to expand again.
BUILDING A TEAM, DIVERSIFYING SERVICES, EXPANDING THE BUSINESS
As the need for increasing development became more apparent, Andy and Dennis started to reach out to their trusted and respected colleagues to help expand the enterprise to include more consulting and product services in addition to training. Andy and Dennis recognized that their company would require a strong foundation of medicine and business. They turned to their long-time friend and highly respected authority in the field of medicine, Dr. Jeffrey Rabrich, Senior Vice President at Envision Physician Services and experienced regional medical director. Along with filling the need for a foundation in medicine, it became essential that Andy and Dennis received sound business and legal advice, so they requested the services of another long-time friend and expert in the world of legal business and long time medical provider, Steve Peluso, Esq. For strategy and planning, they recruited Steve Perrone, an experienced EMT and member of the Fire Department of New York (FDNY) who has an extensive background in critical incident management, counter terrorism response, equipment procurement, logistics and emergency medical instruction. Kimberly Zarrilli, a retired Detective Specialist from the elite Emergency Service Unit and an instructor for the police department’s Specialized Training School, joined the team at Flying Aces to handle logistics and orchestrate business operations. Retired Lieutenant Kevin Whelan was brought on board to conduct threat assessment and crisis management consulting after coordinating and overseeing the Counter Sniper Team and Weapon of Mass Destruction teams of the NYPD. Kirk Anderson, a New York City Lieutenant who coordinated the in-service tactical training of the department’s Training Bureau, was brought into the Flying Aces family to oversee curriculum research, development and delivery for the company.
The team Andy and Dennis have assembled is comprised of subject matter experts with extensive experience in law enforcement, fire, emergency medicine, and military service. Flying Aces now has an executive board of 12 individuals as well as a staff of more than 65 instructors, consultants and administrators. As Flying Aces continues to expand into the corporate and private sectors, their clientele has only grown. With the growth and progress of professional training courses, the organizational consulting options, and the company’s equipment sales and services, Flying Aces has served both civilians and emergency responders in providing training certifications, expert consulting and various equipment upgrades. Having gained clients in the corporate and private sectors, in 2021, Flying Aces launched their first official partnership with Citi Field, home of Major League Baseball’s New York Mets. Since that time, Flying Aces has continued to form partnerships around the globe, including the Vehicle Dynamic Institute (VDI), Atriade Consulting and product distribution for Stryker Medical, Boundtree Medical and First Tactical. Currently, Flying Aces has training and consulting projects in development for educational institutions such as Yale University and Arkansas University as well as organizations such as the Canadian Embassy for New York and St. John’s Hospital.
THE FUTURE AND PREPARING TO BE THE DIFFERENCE
As Flying Aces Enterprises and Consulting propels forward, they will prepare you and your team to be the difference. The difference between order and chaos; the difference between safety and danger; the difference between confidence and fear; the difference between life and death. They are committed to providing quality training that will result in more knowledge and stronger leadership during a critical incident, medical emergency or any other unforeseen event. Looking to the future, the team at Flying Aces will share their wisdom from their expert consulting capabilities to ensure organizational excellence for your company during a crisis as well as ensure you have the most updated and relevant equipment on hand for any response. The needs and desires of all clientele will be successfully filled by offering classes taught by real-world experienced instructors who will provide accurate threat assessment and analysis for your organization, Flying Aces will continue to grow into a global consulting company teaching leaders, companies and agencies both nationally and around the world how to prepare to be the difference and bring calm to chaos.
Are you Ready?