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ClearNav Team Bios



Richard Kellerman, President

I recently sold my interest in the Nielsen-Kellerman Co and am now semi-retired after purchasing the soaring business from NK.  My roles in CNI will include mechanical and user-interface design, and numerous other tasks which I used to pay others to do.  My management roles will be limited:  Gary Kammerer needs little in the way of management, and the rest of the team is largely unmanageable.  I plan to fly more, both in my ASG29, and in my C180 and look forward to being able to be part of a team committed to providing the best designed, best made, and best serviced soaring instruments available.

I have been a member of the SSA for 20 years, have served both as a Board member representing Region 2, and as Secretary.  I compete regularly, with modest results, and frequently act as contest weatherman, also with modest results.  I have all my badges, including a 1,000K diplome and I am fortunate enough to be a Hilton Cup winner.


Tim Welles, Vice President

I retired from Corning, Incorporated in 1999 after a career in manufacturing and engineering.  My last position was Vice President, Manufacturing Technology and Engineering.

I served as the Soaring Society of America Region Three Director for eighteen years, and post retirement, served as Chairman of the Soaring Society of America for 2001 and 2002.

I am addicted to soaring with more than 4500 hours in gliders and over 150,000 cross country miles.  I have my 1000 km diplome and compete at the regional and national level whenever possible.  In 2006, I represented the USA in the Club Class WGC at Vinon, France.

I am a member of the Harris Hill Soaring Corp. at Harris Hill, Elmira, NY, where whenever I am not flying my Ventus 2cxt (W3), I am probably giving cross country instruction in the HHSC Duo Discus.

Like Richard, I fly a Cessna 180, which is a great machine for long distance travel, except when you have to bring along a glider and trailer.

My role at CNi will focus on user interface design, task management and prioritization, and providing Richard with managerial challenges.

I have been involved with ClearNav development from the beginning on an informal basis and look forward to being part of the continued development and improvement of great products from CNI.  


Elsie Kellerman, Secretary/Treasurer

I’ve been married to Richard since 1968 and have been through the founding and growing and selling of Nielsen-Kellerman Company.   I will retire completely from that company as soon as a replacement can be found.  Meanwhile ClearNav books will be my job, probably also including receiving, billing and anything else that needs doing.  I don’t fly.  I ride and judge horses in dressage.  


Gary Kammerer, Customer Service

After graduation from Vermont Technical College in Electrical and Electronics Engineering, I worked for IBM in Vermont as a Failure Analyst for 9 years (dissecting fingernail size computer chips to determine the root cause of failure) and then joined Dave Ellis and crew at Cambridge Aero Instruments in Waitsfield, Vermont.  After 5 years in Vermont and another 5 years in Memphis, Tennessee with Cambridge Aero, I decided I missed the East Coast and joined NK Soaring. I handled soaring sales along with customer and dealer support at NK Soaring and will
continue these endeavors at ClearNav Instruments.


Chip Garner, Software Design and Development

I began soaring in 1969 and got serious flying a standard Libelle in the early ‘80s. and have been an avid contest pilot ever since.  I have won four US nationals and was 6th at the World Air Games in Torino in 2009.  I have represented the USA in four World Gliding Championships and in the first World Sailplane Grand Prix in Saint Auban, France.   

Contests have taken me all over the US, to both islands of New Zealand, to South Africa, Poland, Germany, Italy and to France.  I also love flying the Online Contest (OLC) and have contributed to several world level wins by the Albuquerque Soaring Club.  

I have served as  an SSA Director and Vice Chair.

I am an engineer by training and have worked on space instruments, space power systems, fusion and fission energy, radiation monitoring equipment,  a user interface based on a camera/projector pair, and sailplane instruments.  I connected a GPS to one of the first hand held computers and created Glide Navigator in 1990.  I wrote software for Glide Navigator II and for several Cambridge instruments including the L/S-NAV and the 302 before working on ClearNav.

I am very glad to be on the CNI team, for the opportunity to help create the best soaring instruments in the world.


John Good, Software Design and Development

I took my first glider ride in 1980 (in a TG-3, at Eagleville TN).  The hook was well set after a summer in Colorado that included interesting flying at Owl Canyon (at that time known as Waverly West) near Ft. Collins. I've owned a full progression of gliders: Ka-6, LS-4, DG-300, Discus CS leading to my current Discus 2a and DuoDiscus.

About 20 years ago I started the long learning curve of ridge flying.  I now hold several US National records set during ridge flights, and once held a World Record (since broken by Klaus Ohlmann in South America) - but I find I still learn much on every flight.  I live in the "ridge country" of central Pennsylvania, and think of Mifflin County Airport as my home field.

An early interest in contest flying - and organizing - led to a stint as the SSA Competition Committee Chairman and a long association with the SSA Contest Rules Committee.  I've served as an SSA Director, and as the Editor of Soaring magazine.  I've attended several World Gliding Contests, and in 2003 served as the US Team Captain in Leszno, Poland.  I've helped to organize the Mt. Washington Wave Camp, held each October in New Hampshire.

I was involved in early efforts at developing GPS-based flight recorders, and have long been interested in glider instrumentation. I look forward to pursuing this with Clear Nav Instruments.


David Masson, Software Design and Development

I had my first flight in 1979, started learning in 1981, and went solo on my 16th birthday.  I live in the UK, flying from Lasham and enjoy the challenges of the British weather.

For the last 10 years I have owned an LS6, competition number “LS6”.  I have made fairly good use of her, winning the UK 18m nationals in 2003, Enterprise in 2010 and doing pretty well in the BGA national ladder and OLC over the years. I hold the UK 15m distance record and have collected a few trophies for long distance flights.  I am determined to do a 1000km in her in the UK.   I’m now up to about 2,700 hours, with 600 hours in the last 3 years.

I do gliding forecasts throughout the soaring season.  They are supposed to be for the Lasham area, but a “few” others appear to take note of them.  I have also been the weatherman for a few national competitions. It’s funny - because I’m not a real met’ man!  Well, I’m self taught and have written software to help me.  As a sideline I now intend to redevelop that into something really good for aiding forecast and presenting soaring weather.

I have learned how much more quality flying I can do by working around the weather, not being too fussy and making the most of good weather when we get it.  If I had a saying it would be “Take off when it’s soarable and come back when it’s not!” 

I enjoy science, maths and clever algorithms and have been developing software for most of my life.  I’d claim to be good at writing well structured software that performs.  My first major job was dealing in accounting software.  For the past nine years I worked as a software engineer for a corporation working on a variety of projects including processing and presenting geospatial and aeronautical data.  You could say that I have geared what I’ve learned and what I’m good at towards being able to take on just such a role as I now have with CNi. 


Phil Schlosser, Hardware

Dave Ellis, Consultant, Variometry

My first glider flight was in a SGS 2-33 at Sugarbush Soaring in 1969.  The variometer face was so oxidized that I couldn’t see the pellets.  I asked John Macone if I could polish the plastic. One thing led to another, and I’ve been fascinated with variometers ever since. The interface between the physics of sensors and available computing power has been the center of my professional career since 1956. This has included an Electrometer for mass spectrometry,  a thin-film magnetometer, CW NMR spectroscopy, Carbon Dioxide and airflow sensors for medical electronics, and both mechanical and thermal airflow sensors for gliding.  As a consultant to Cambridge Aero Instruments  in 1979, and as owner from 1986 to 2001, I was present during revolutionary progress in silicon-based sensors and computing power.  Progress continues today, yielding once un-imaginable functions at tolerable cost for a glider variometer.

The combination of 1500 hours of recreational gliding and technology has gotten me into and out of trouble several time. With Phil Schlosser, John Good and Rick Sheppe, CAI introduced GPS-based scoring to the sport during the 1995 WGC in New Zealand.  The CAI 302 pioneered fast, high resolution pressure-based variometry.  Since 2002, I’ve focused on the role of air turbulence in vario performance.

I ‘m confident that new technology in the forthcoming CNI Vario will make a significant contribution to pilot’s enjoyment of the sport and to improved competition performance, and looking forward to working with the CNI Team on this project. (2011/01/01).


Ken Kochanski, Website Design and Content

I took an introductory glider flight in 1977 (after seeing news footage of the Space Shuttle approach and landing tests) and have been involved with soaring ever since.  I was very fortunate and lucky to start my training at Blairstown, N.J. - a great ridge site that has always been home base to a large group of avid XC and Racing pilots.

I started to fly in glider comps as soon as I had my ticket, learning how to race at the 1-26 Championships before moving into glass and Regional meets and the occasional 15 Meter Nationals.  Over the years, I picked up a few NJ state records, completed all FAI badges (except Diamond Climb) - all at Blairstown, and was the first pilot to obtain a 1000K Diploma out of New Jersey (Blairstown). I picked up my power ticket, instrument rating and taildragger endorsement in here somewhere as well.

Although I graduated from Rutgers with a degree in Psychology, I also have a fair technical orientation and have been working as a business software designer, developer and systems project manager for the last 25+ years.

I got involved in website design supporting the Sailplane Racing Association quite a few years ago, followed by the Philadelphia Glider Council and the Governor’s Cup sites as a volunteer. Richard thought my soaring experience, business systems background, and involvement in supporting soaring oriented websites could be a good fit for the CNi venture. I’m thinking he is right, and I’m very happy to be a member of the CNi team.


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