About Us

More Than Brokers

 

Our Mente Group team of aviation experts and solutions enthusiasts go above and beyond to ensure your success. Mente Group is held by Aquila Aviation Ventures, an investment company formed to serve unmet industry needs and leverage resources across entities to scale for future growth.

Meet the Team

Brian Proctor

  • President and CEO
  • Headquarters

Brian Proctor is the founder, President, and CEO of Aquila Aviation Ventures. He founded Mente Group, LLC in 2009.

Brian has been serving private aviation clients for over 19 years. Having been involved in over $8 billion in aircraft transactions and over $7 billion in aviation business planning, Brian’s experience is sought by corporations and individuals, worldwide.

After serving for six years in the US Army as an infantry Ranger and intelligence officer, Brian left the military to pursue a career in the private sector. After working at Transamerica Corporation, Mr. Proctor served as consultant, COO and President of the world’s second largest consultancy and broker/dealer.

Brian serves on boards for: International Aircraft Dealers Association (IADA), Jet Aviation Advisory Board, and formerly, the Frontiers of Flight Museum in Dallas. He also previously served as President of IADA. He holds a BA degree in International Studies in Politics and Diplomacy from the University of Richmond and an MBA from Southern Methodist University.

Vince Restivo

  • Vice President, Operational Consulting
  • Headquarters

Vince has 37 years experience in business aviation starting with Gulfstream Aerospace in 1984. Over the next 25 years, he contributed successfully in various roles of increasing responsibility with Gulfstream, from Initial Phase Manufacturing to Flight Test to Completion Integration and Test Engineering, Vince gained vast experience and knowledge in avionics and cabin systems design, integration, connectivity, test and certification.

With the logarithmic advances in business aviation technology, Vince moved to Completion Sales, where the need for a strong technology background coupled with the ability to connect with customers was essential. Helping customers navigate the vast array of integrated high-tech systems as well as voice and data communications options became a refined skill that aligned with his passion to help people. With the importance of the aircraft interior becoming a priority in the purchase decision process, his combined avionics, technology and interior knowledge allows him to seamlessly communicate with customers from

While Director of Completion Sales, his passion for excellence in the customer experience and a discriminating eye for detail and quality led him to implement further enhancements in process, product offerings and systems capabilities. Vince actively participated in the development of Gulfstream interiors, cabin systems and completion process from the G-IV to the G650.

Leveraging his ability to quickly perceive customer needs and bridge the technology and interior systems gap, Vince was appointed Regional Vice President – Aircraft Sales for Gulfstream based in Singapore.

Recognized for his knowledge and experience in business aircraft interiors, technology, connectivity, design, process and customer experience, Vince was appointed Vice President – Completions for Hawker Beechcraft Corporation. Following the successful transition of the Hawker Completion Center in Little Rock, Vince founded Addo Virtus Advisors, an advisory firm specializing in completion management, business process and metrics focused on providing both operational and transactional value throughout the aircraft acquisition and ownership life-cycle.

Vince holds AS Degrees in Electronics Technology and Avionics. He has served as a panelist for the Arkansas Governor’s Aerospace Summit, been interviewed for various trade publications, appeared on “Wealth in the Sky” TV program focused on business aviation and has written white papers aimed at making technology understandable at the user level.

Vince and his wife Cynthia have three adult children and four grandchildren.

Michael Rodgers

  • Chief Financial Officer
  • Headquarters

Michael Rodgers is the Chief Financial Officer for Aquila Aviation Ventures.

In this position, he oversees all accounting, HR and corporate finance functions of Aquila and its portfolio companies. Prior to his current role, Michael spent more than 20 years in corporate finance, joining Aquila from JP Morgan where he focused on the Industrials sector. Throughout his career, he has specialized in debt underwriting, merger & acquisition advisory, and strategic consulting.

Michael received his MBA from the Cox School of Business at Southern Methodist University, and BBA in Finance from Texas A&M University.

Mary Belken

  • Marketing Manager
  • Headquarters

Mary is Marketing Manager at Aquila Aviation Ventures.

Mary manages all of the corporate brand and aircraft marketing, advertising, public relations and all event planning. In addition, Mary supports the operations of Mente Group’s aircraft transactions business.

Prior to Mente Group, Mary managed the marketing efforts for several other companies in industries including healthcare and direct mail advertising as well as being a business owner.

Mary earned her Bachelor of Arts in Journalism/Advertising from the University of Oklahoma.

Tracy Yeager

  • Contract Manager
  • Headquarters

Tracy Yeager is the Executive Assistant at Aquila Aviation Ventures.

She attended Midwestern State University, Texas Christian University and the University of North Texas.  She grew up in Texas and is blessed with an awesome family, including two sons.  Tracy has extensive administrative experience and is thrilled to be in the Aviation Industry and working with such an amazing team!

Sandy Carter

  • Controller
  • Headquarters

Sandy Carter is the Controller for Aquila Aviation Ventures.

Sandy is responsible for Accounting/Finance, IT and Legal. She has 30+ years of accounting, finance & operations experience, incl. 10+ years in aviation.

Prior to joining Mente, she was the Accounting Manager at Leading Edge Aviation Solutions, LLC. Sandy has also held positions as Accountant, Credit Analyst and Investment Analyst in the non-profit, banking and insurance sectors. She also manages her own business where she helps companies set up their accounting departments and processes.

Sandy holds a BSBA in Finance from Southeast Missouri State University.

When not working, Sandy enjoys outdoor activities and spends time hiking and zip-lining.

Stephanie Parry

  • Vice President, Human Resources
  • Headquarters

Stephanie Parry is the Vice President of Human Resources for Aquila Aviation Ventures.

Over the course of her 15+ year career, Stephanie has had experience in all HR functions including benefits administration, employee relations, and recruiting / onboarding, taking on increased levels of responsibility with each role.

Stephanie received her BA in Communication from Texas A&M University and her MS in Operations/HR Management from the University of Arkansas. She is a member of the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) and maintains two HR certifications – SHRM Certified Professional (SHRM-CP) and Professional in Human Resources (PHR).

Marissa Goodale

  • Office Manager/HR Specialist
  • Headquarters

Marissa Goodale is the Office Manager/HR Specialist for Aquila Aviation Ventures.

As the Office Manager, she oversees and supports the general organizational functions and activities at the headquarters office.

As an HR Specialist, Marissa is focused on all aspects of talent acquisition and human resource processes within the organization, including full-cycle recruiting and onboarding of new employees. She brings several years of experience managing recruitment teams and creating recruitment strategies, which she works closely with the VP of Human Resources on perfecting.

Marissa earned her Bachelor’s degree in English from the University of California Riverside. A California native, now Texas transplant, she spends her spare time with her husband and two dogs, Sammy and Bowman, cheering for the San Francisco 49ers.

Jim Lewis

  • Senior Managing Director
  • West

Jim Lewis is the Senior Managing Director of the West Coast at Mente Group, LLC.

Jim is a 45-year aviation industry leader with 24 years in operations & 21 years in aircraft sales/marketing/business development. His experience ranges from early days as a freight/charter pilot and regional airline captain, to chief pilot/flight department manager, to Beech Aircraft/Galaxy Aerospace sales demonstration pilot, sales manager, director and vice president. Jim’s sales and marketing tenure includes successful careers at marquis OEMs with more than $2.5 billion in aircraft transactions. He spent 16 years serving as the U.S. West Coast Director for Galaxy/Gulfstream and 2 ½ years at Embraer – responsible in each position for business development and new/active accounts, leveraging his strengths in aerospace technical aspects, aircraft operations, brand building and developed an extensive list of long term customer relationships.

Jim is a member and active with NBAA, CBAA, the Columbia Aviation Association, the Cascade Aero Club, the Cirrus Owners and Pilots Association, the Oregon Pilots Association, and is a frequent industry presenter-speaker. An active aircraft owner with an Airline Transport Pilot license, 8 type ratings, and over 10,000 hours of flight time, Jim volunteers his time and airplane for Veteran’s Airlift Command and Challenge Air missions.

Jim holds a Master’s degree in Aeronautical Science (Management Specialization) from Embry Riddle Aeronautical University and a Bachelor’s degree in Natural Science from Florida Southern. Jim serves twelve western states, western Canada and the Pacific region for Mente Group from his base in Portland Oregon, and enjoys flying, cooking, travel and golf.

Jay Bushouse

  • Managing Director
  • Midwest

Jay is the Managing Director for the Midwest at MENTE Group.

As a 20-year veteran in the industry, Jay has sales and operational experience for the aircraft manufacturer as well as the private sector. Most recently he spent 12 years selling new and preowned Cessna Citations and Beechcraft King Airs for the aircraft manufacturer. Jay received many accolades over his tenure that he attributes to the strength in customer relationships. As a Flight Instructor and Airline Transport rated professional pilot with over 4,500 hours flight experience, Jay has held multiple roles in his career including, Sales & Aircraft Demonstration, 135 charter captain, part 91 transportation captain, Banner Tow Pilot, fractional aircraft sales and management. He holds a Jet type rating in the Cessna Citation 525 series of aircraft. Prior to his Business Aviation focus, Jay was the Sales & Marketing, revenue management and planning director for a portfolio of commercial real-estate and hotel properties in the Chicagoland area.

Jay earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Commercial Aviation from the University of North Dakota. Outside of his passion for aviation, Jay is an avid Runner, Cyclist, and Ice Hockey player/Youth Hockey Coach. He calls Kansas City home where he resides with his wife and daughters.

Kyle "K.B." Bonda

  • Managing Director
  • Northeast

Kyle is the Managing Director for the Northeast at MENTE Group.

Kyle is a graduate of East Stroudsburg University with a degree in Political Science. While serving in the United States NAVY, Kyle found and developed his passion for all things aviation.

After a successful consulting career in the high-end luxury automotive industry, Kyle began his general aviation career in 2017 with Avjet Global as a Sales Specialist prior to moving into the role of sales director with NexGen Flight Solutions in 2021.

Kyle’s knowledge and experience in the industry includes aircraft sales and acquisitions, market intelligence, aircraft marketing, operations, charter and management. Furthermore, Kyle has held leadership positions within brand marketing divisions and international non-profit organizations.

Now that he is with Mente Group, Kyle looks forward to expanding his knowledge, network and ultimately, best serving his clients.

Jared Absher

  • Managing Director
  • South

Jared is the Managing Director for the South at MENTE Group, LLC. 

 

As a 12-year veteran in the industry, Jared has sales, engineering, and operations experience with Bell Helicopter, Mooney Aircraft, and Embraer Executive Jets. A lifelong aviation enthusiast and pilot, Jared holds two type ratings, flight instructor and commercial pilot ratings, and has experience as a demonstration pilot, charter pilot, and various part 91 operations. 

 

Jared holds a bachelors degree in Physics from the University of Texas at Arlington. Outside of aviation, Jared enjoys running, playing trumpet, and traveling around the world with his wife and son.

Steve Main

  • Vice President, Transactions
  • Planning & Transactions

Steve Main is Vice President of Transactions at MENTE Group, LLC.

An entrepreneur at heart, Steve’s drive is fueled by his life-long passion for aviation. His diverse background includes roles as CEO/business owner, President of a large charter company, Vice-President of Sales, and Director of Aviation for a fortune-500 company. In his previous roles, Steve has exceeded sales & revenue goals and has a history of leading teams to surpass performance objectives. Steve started flying at age 14 with his father, and has accumulated total flight time of 6,000 hours, with 3,100 hours as PIC as an Airline Transport Pilot. His previous flight experience includes mid-cabin and large-cabin Gulfstream and large-cabin Bombardier products. He was chief pilot for a Gulfstream operator, captain and line pilot for Atlantic Southeast Airlines and a flight instructor for FlightSafety International.

Steve has a degree from the University of Georgia and is also an accomplished guitarist & avid motorsports enthusiast.

Ryan Kahle

  • Market Analyst
  • Planning & Transactions

Ryan Kahle is a Market Analyst at MENTE Group, LLC.

Ryan is a recent graduate of Auburn University, where he earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Aviation Management, as well as a Minor in Business. While in school, Ryan also earned his private pilot certificate and instrument rating through Auburn’s Part 141 program in ASEL aircraft.

As a Market Analyst, Ryan will support the transactions team through the gathering and analyzation of market data. Ryan will also support the marketing and business development segments though report creation, presentations, and marketing specifications.

Ryan has a passion for aviation and is excited to start his career with Mente Group at the Frisco office!

Matt Rhoda

  • Market Analyst
  • Planning & Transactions

Matt Rhoda is a Market Analyst at MENTE Group, LLC.

Matt is a recent graduate from The University of Oklahoma, graduating with a BBA in Finance.

As a Market Analyst, Matt supports the transactions team in gathering and analyzing market data.

Matt is currently pursuing his Private Pilot Certificate and hopes to complete the rating by Summer 2023.

When Matt isn’t in the office, he’ll either be on a golf course, in a duck marsh, or in the air.

Mariana Santos

  • Vice President, Strategic Consulting
  • Planning & Transactions

Mariana Santos is the Vice President of Strategic Consulting at Mente Group, LLC.

Mariana brings 15 years of solid experience with aircraft OEMs, both in business and commercial aviation. Over the course of 8 years at Embraer Executive Jets, Mariana held multiple positions. Initially, as Product Strategist, she would build and recommend aircraft short- and long-term roadmaps. Later, she served as Sr. Sales Engineer in North America, developing aircraft technical and economic analysis in support to Sales. More recently, she co-created and managed their analytics-based fleet evaluation program tailored to Corporate Flight Departments. Between 2004-2010, she served as a Flight Operations Engineer at Embraer Commercial division where she would liaise with customer airlines’ Flight Operations and Operations Engineering teams, providing day-to-day technical support to a growing fleet of regional jets. Prior to Mente, she briefly ventured into the commercial supersonic world with Boom, the Denver-based start-up.

Mariana is a Brazilian native and has been in the US for the past 8 years. She earned her MBA degree in 2014 from Hult International Business School at San Francisco and her Bachelor of Science in Aeronautical Infrastructure Engineering in 2003 from ITA (Instituto Tecnológico de Aeronáutica), Brazil’s most prestigious engineering institution.

Jeff Dorrough

  • Vice President, Asset Management
  • Appraisal & Forecasting

Jeff Dorrough is the Vice President, Asset Management with Mente Group, LLC.

He is the lead appraiser and consultant for internal clients, as well as, external assignments. Jeff is a Senior ASA appraiser with the American Society of Appraisers in the field of Machinery and Technical Specialties with fifteen years of experience with business aircraft. Jeff is also a graduate of Southern Methodist University with a major in Finance from the Cox School of Business.

Mr. Dorrough was previously the Asset Manager and lead appraiser for Bombardier Pre-Owned Aircraft Sales from 2002 thru 2015 where he was directly responsible for managing the asset portfolio and valuation process. He was responsible for performing all aircraft valuations including, Comparable Analysis, Trade Value Calculations, Residual Value Projections, and Damage Assessments, while providing quarterly market commentary. Mr. Dorrough was instrumental in the writing and negotiation of trade policy for Bombardier Pre-Owned Aircraft Sales, and assisted in the creation of damage assessment criteria which has been adopted by ASA for their education curriculum, as well as, several private industries.

Mr. Dorrough conducts speaking engagements and is very active in many business aircraft societies such as: NARA, NBAA, NAFA and his local chapter of ASA located in Dallas Texas.

Craig Cox

  • Director of Asset Management
  • Appraisal & Forecasting

Craig W. Cox is the Director of Asset Management at Mente Group, LLC.

Craig is a Senior ASA appraiser with the American Society of Appraisers in the field of Machinery and Technical Specialties with thirteen years of experience with business aircraft.

Craig’s involvement with aviation stems back to where at the age of 17 he started taking flying lessons. During his flight instruction time, he worked at the Aurora Airport as line personnel.

As his interest evolved in aviation, Craig attended Rock Valley College in Rockford, Illinois, Airframe and Powerplant program. He also attended Waubonsee Community College for Business Development.

He began work at Aurora Avionics rigging and wiring Avionics for various aircraft until the industry started taking a down turn.

Craig went on to manufacturing management for ITW/Simco, a Fortune 500 company where he developed and refined his skills in sales and marketing. He was responsible for developing and maintaining a representative/ dealer base throughout the Midwest and Western United States. He worked closely with engineering in designing Ultra-Violet and Electrostatic equipment.

Mr. Cox was previously the COO and senior appraiser for SAI Valuations, LLC from 2005 thru 2018 where he was directly responsible for managing the valuation process. He was responsible for performing all aircraft valuations including, Comparable Analysis, Residual Value Projections, and Damage Assessments.

Mr. Cox has appraised more than 4500 aircraft and/or aviation related assets with a total appraised value of over 20 billion dollars.

Mr. Cox conducts speaking engagements and is very active in many business aircraft societies such as, NBAA, NAFA and his local chapter of ASA located in Chicago, Illinois.

Peter Finseth

  • Director of Business Analytics
  • Appraisal & Forecasting

Peter Finseth is the Director of Business Analytics at Mente Group, LLC.

Prior to joining Mente, Peter worked in the Financial Services industry for 20 years with a focus in the mortgage industry for the last 15 years. Most recently, he worked at Fannie Mae as a Senior Business Analyst supporting the REO Valuations business. Peter has a broad background including Financial Planning & Analysis, Financial Modeling, Business Intelligence tools, and programming experience.

Peter earned his Bachelor of Business Administration degree from the University of Texas at Austin. While working full time, he later earned his MBA from the University of Texas at Dallas. Peter is an active member of the North Texas soccer community. He started his own soccer club back in 2008 and actively coaches teams ranging in age from 10 to 17 years old.

Karan Mehta

  • Associate
  • Headquarters

Karan Mehta is an Associate at Aquila Aviation Ventures.

As an M&A associate, Karan will be focused on working with the CFO on modeling jet-as-service opportunities, evaluating M&A opportunities, preparing presentation materials for equity investors, developing more comprehensive KPIs for portfolios and much more.

He studied both International Studies and Biology honors student and obtained his degree from Baylor University. Upon graduation in 2018, he worked at a crisis center for troubled youth, driven by his innate passion for destigmatizing mental health and helping his community. After 1.5 years, he transitioned into a role at Merrill Lynch, where he was an analyst for different broker groups and helped forecast and create various, viable investment options for his clients.

When not working, Karan loves to play golf, hang out with Adelaide; his recuse pup, and is also on a top 10 rank BBC produced, cricket podcast based out of London. Between playing golf, talking cricket, traveling to over 40 countries, and being a published poet, he also has a love for culture and linguistics. This is shown through his sufficient ability to speak 4 languages.

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