the silverhawk story

Silverhawk Aviation guarantees the best value in private travel in the Midwest and has been serving its customers since 1991. With a fleet featuring a full line-up of Cessna Citation jets and King Air turboprops, we also have the fleet flexibility to provide you with the right airplane for all your travel needs.

Silverhawk’s focus is connecting Midwest customers with destinations across North America and the Caribbean. Whether customers fly privately once a year or would benefit from the additional savings or tax benefits offered from our Jet Card or Fractional Ownership programs, Silverhawk has you covered.

join our team

At Silverhawk Aviation, we’ve always known that you can’t create something special and distinctive unless you relentlessly seek out, hire, and retain amazing talent. We absolutely love customer-service oriented applicants who believe people matter, who will do the right thing for the customer (whatever it takes), and who want to develop their technical expertise. If this sounds like you, check out our available career opportunities below!

meet our crew


Mike Gerdes

Mike began his career in aviation in 2004 working at Silverhawk’s front desk while also learning how to fly.

In 2006, he helped launch a local flight school as a Certified Flight Instructor before returning to Silverhawk as a charter pilot in 2007. In 2008, Mike became a King Air and Citation Captain and company flight instructor, later adding accounting duties as the company Controller. He became Chief Pilot in 2010 and was promoted to Director of Operations/CFO and a Check Airman in 2011.

Mike became President and co-owner of Silverhawk in 2015 and currently serves as the Chairman. His vision for Silverhawk is to elevate each customer’s experience by offering great flexibility, extensive experience, and remarkable service. Mike enjoys snorkeling, scuba diving, biking, and spending time with his daughter Bree, and son Cam.

Chief Executive Officer

John Geary

John started flying in 2007 when he earned his Private Pilot’s Certificate in Bakersfield, California. He then attended Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University to receive his Bachelor’s Degree in Aeronautical Science. After a couple of years as a flight instructor at Embry-Riddle, he went to work at an international flight school where he trained European pilots to EASA standards.

With over 2,000 hours of instruction time, John decided he was ready for his next adventure. He left the Sunshine State and moved to McCook, NE to become an air ambulance pilot, flying the King Air 90. John eventually earned the title of training captain and became the base lead pilot at McCook. After almost two years with Lifeteam, he joined Silverhawk in January 2015. Since then, he has been involved as the training officer, the Chief Pilot, the Director of Operations, and now the Chief Executive Officer. When he isn’t sitting behind a desk or flying, he enjoys spending time outdoors and traveling with his wife Kelsey.

Chief Operating Officer

Joe Butt

After high school, Joe earned an associate’s degree from Southeast Community College and then continued on to get a bachelor’s degree in business from Peru State College.

He started flying in 1999 and earned a private certificate in February of 2000. In 2011 he took the plunge and fulfilled a lifelong dream of flying professionally. In the summer of 2015, he started his aviation career with Silverhawk Aviation flying King Airs. He progressed through the ranks from King Air SIC, to King Air PIC, Jet SIC, Jet Pic, King Air instructor, Citation instructor, Citation Check Airman, and Assistant Chief Pilot.  In 2021 he became the Director of Operations and is now the Chief Operating Officer. He and his wife Traci enjoy traveling to Disney World and the Caribbean. They also enjoy boating and just about anything outdoors when it is warm out.

Chief Marketing Officer

Dave Stanley

Dave Stanley joined Silverhawk Aviation in October of 2017 as the Director of Sales & Marketing. He is responsible for business development and marketing, including managing sales processes, customer relationship management, branding, advertising, social media, sponsorship, and web development efforts.  With more than 20 years of marketing experience, he is obsessed with analytics and optimizing sales and marketing processes to deliver positive measurable results.

Before working at Silverhawk, he was the VP of Sales and Marketing at HobbyTown Unlimited. During that time, he was responsible for providing a clear vision of the HobbyTown brand while overseeing all national and local marketing efforts for an omnichannel, multi-unit, retail franchise operation.

Dave currently resides in beautiful Hickman, Nebraska, and shares a home with his wife of 20 years Diana, son Benjamin, and two Boston Terriers, Pete and Daisy. In his spare time, he enjoys BBQ, movies, and is an avid motorcycle enthusiast.

Our Core Values

People First
Whatever It Takes
Never Settle