______  We are a team of Professionals who are passionate about increasing the knowledge of external-load operations in order to improve the safety in our industry.

We want our trainees to be the best so we have created a well-rounded team in order to better serve our customers needs, including mission specific operations. Our team is comprised of long-line and vertical reference pilots employed in various sectors of the external-load industry. In addition, our Instructor Pilots have trained pilots from around the world with a multitude of varying backgrounds within the long line industry.

Our Goal- Training With a Purpose!

Andre and Kim developed Volo Mission to create a company dedicated solely to training the long-line and vertical reference industry. Through research and experience, they believe there has been a lack of focus on building strong foundational skills and practice a pilot needs to confidently perform long-line missions. More importantly, Kim and Andre believe there is a lack of formal human factors training for this high-risk industry. The course was designed with a certain amount of practice and repetition necessary to solidify skills and decrease the chance of skill decay, as well as address the human factors external-load pilots encounter.

We want trainees to receive the best possible foundation across varied sectors of external-load flight scenarios. Training will be completed in the shortest possible time to maintain cost effectiveness while supporting a safe training experience for the pilot.

Andre and Kim are always working to further their skills, knowledge, and training in order to keep Volo Mission at the forefront of the industry. We are here to disrupt the vertical reference and long line training arena as you know it!!

Meet our team

Kimberly Hutchings
Kimberly Hutchings,
President & CEO
Kim is an entrepreneur, mentor, and helicopter pilot who is passionate about increasing awareness pertaining to the importance of human factors training for the external-load industry. Kim has a BA in Psychology from the University of Southern California (USC) and a Masters in Aeronautical Science with Specializations in Human Factors and Safety Systems from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. Kim is driven by her love of flying with her passion for helping others. With her psychology background and safety specialties she adds another dimension to the Volo Mission training program that is unmatched at an external-load training organization. When Kim is not working Volo Mission, she loves going on adventures with her family, training for the next fitness challenge, and mentoring the Spartan Girls!
Andre Hutchings
Andre Hutchings,
Director of Operations
Andre is an entrepreneur, command pilot, and Country Manager for Columbia Helicopters who is passionate for sharing his knowledge of long-lining to pilots who are entering (or reentering) the external-load industry. For over 25 years Andre has worked in the Helicopter Industry in a multitude of capacities ranging from fire-fighting, police, construction, logging, and oil and gas. Andre developed his passion for vertical reference and long-lining while working for Columbia Helicopters. He has observed others around the world in different long line jobs and used his experience and insights to create what was formerly the Los Angeles Helicopters long line course. When he’s not overseeing operations with Volo Mission, Andre can be found flying missions in Afghanistan as the Country Manager of CHI, or enjoying trips on his breaks with his family and a little time on the golf course.
Zach Pohl
Zach Pohl,
Ground Crew Instructor
Zach has worked in different customer service and production roles for several years however, in 2014 he decided to pursue his childhood dream of becoming a commercial helicopter pilot. In 2015 Zach joined the Volo Mission team as Ground Crew Instructor and enjoys the benefit of being able to meet such a diverse group of people from around the world, but what he enjoys the most is seeing his work and instruction improve and grow the skill set of the course attendees. When he is not busy working, you can find Zach on a hike with his dog, racing his car, traveling or spending time relaxing with his friends and family.
Luis Pinon
Luis Pinon,
Chief Pilot
Not only is Luis Volo Missions Chief Pilot, his primary job is a Command Pilot for Columbia Helicopters. He currently flies long line missions in Afghanistan aiding in the re-supply to soldiers in remote bases and moving heavy equipment for retro grade. Luis’s experience includes precision placement of loads, fire fighting, and logging. With his background as a Certified Flight Instructor and his experience long lining in heavy and light helicopters, Luis is an extremely qualified Instructor Pilot with a passion for the industry and for sharing his experience with pilots new to the external-load industry. When he is not flying for Columbia or Volo Mission, you most likely can find Luis off-roading in the desert or at his favorite combat sporting events!
Matt Romena
Matt Romena,
Instructor Pilot
Matt joined Volo Mission in 2014 as an Instructor Pilot but has been working as a Senior Pilot for Winco Power line Services for several years. Matt has a background in construction so it was a natural decision for him to want to remain in the field once he became a pilot. Power line construction projects are dangerous and very demanding both, physically and mentally. Matt’s experience enables him to explain first-hand the safety practices, human factors, and hazards in this type of unforgiving environment. If Matt is not flying or spending quality time with his family, you can find him hunting in the woods!
Luis Peña
Luis Peña,
South American Representative
After serving in the Peruvian Air Force, Luis joined Columbia Helicopters in 2007. As a Command Pilot with Columbia Helicopters working in the jungles of Peru, Luis has extensive knowledge of oil and gas operations and understands the qualifications needed by a pilot in this environment. He believes vertical reference and long line skills are a crucial standard for pilots working in the external-load industry and therefore, he is passionate about connecting South American Companies with the innovative training Volo Mission provides. During his off time, Luis enjoys spending time with his family, playing tennis, and surfing.