Let Virgin America Fly

Anyone who has known me for any amount of time knows that I've always harbored a life-long ambition to start an airline. If I was daydreaming at school or work, chances are I was daydreaming about starting an airline and all of the details like what food it would have and what the livery would be like. Well as fate would have it, I'm finally living that dream. I'm starting an airline.dl00087.jpg Since last August I have been part of the founding team at Virgin America. In fact I was the 79th employee. We're already closing on 200. In the months that I have been there I have been able to take part in the creation of what I know will become one of the biggest milestones in airline history. My official role is head of interactive marketing (aka the web guy) but I have been in pricing meetings, given my two cents about routes, interviewed people for roles throughout the company, and witnessed the creation of something I am humbled to be a part of. I've also never worked so hard in my life. A startup is a startup, regardless of the industry and I, like everyone else in the company, wear multiple hats. It has been an emotional journey too, with tentative DoT rejections, constant jabs from most of the legacy carriers, and the ever changing state of the US airline industry. But this week marked the most significant moments in my time at Virgin America. We revealed our cabin and in-flight amenities for the first time. This is what we've all been working towards. This is what it's all about. This is what I've wanted to tell you all about since I started working there but, for obvious reasons, was not able to. The most revolutionary In-Flight Entertainment system in the country (one might argue the world.) The most beautiful planes (inside and out) that I have ever seen. The most comfortable seats I have ever had the pleasure of sitting in. This is going to change the way people fly. This is going to set the new standard. But you might never get to enjoy it. For reasons that don't bear explaining here (if you want to read about it, go here) the Department of Transportation is having trouble granting us our right to fly. The tentatively rejected our application on December 28th and we replied to the rejection last week. For 18 straight days before that I, and some dedicated colleagues, worked on a campaign to let the public know about us and our situation, and to invite them to help. The end result was letVAfly.com. We created the site to show people what we're all about and allow them to help join our fight. Check it out. So I'm asking you to help. Sign the petition, write to congress, spread the word. Send this link to everyone you know...EVERYONE. Email it to friends, family, colleagues; post it on your intranet at work, post it on your blog or myspace or whatever. There's a lot at stake here.